Let there be light!

The clocks have gone back and the evenings have been plunged into the depths of darkness.

The light in the office starts to diminish from around 4pm and we leave work in the dark. I need to use my phone torch to assist me to my car without tripping over or alternatively walking into something.

As I peer out my dining room window, I can no longer see my garden unless I turn on the garish patio light which illuminates the garden in a mottled mustard yellow - not the most attractive setting and does not do my newly cultivated beds any justice.

I have been meaning to buy some soft subtle lighting for the garden especially for the winter time. I like the idea of hanging lights along the back fence or some large patio lanterns!

In the meantime and without the assistance of electricity, batteries or LED lighting, what can we do to brighten our gardens during November?

Which plants will be our bright sparks during the colder and darker days?

Penstemon are the most reliable plants that will flower from May to November - if we are lucky they will often flower a little longer. This variety in particular will boast divine colour, perfect to brighten up the back of your borders. Another fabulous feature to our Penstemon pals are that they seem oblivious to rain, which is fantastic news considering our often wet climate.

Chimonanthus praecox will not only dazzle your beds and borders but they will make exquisite cut blooms for within the home, releasing a highly sweet scent whilst fashioning unique splendor in your jugs and vases. Being fully hardy, these glorious blooms will greet you from November to March enabling you to absorb colourful grandeur throughout the cold and grey winter months.

Alstroemeria are famous for providing an exotic touch to your garden throughout November and will provide warmth on a grand scale. Just look at how this variety boasts tropical tones and luxuriance, etched with golden hues. You may also treat your home to a touch of the tropics by filling oodles of vases with these gorgeous flowers.

When I look at these blooms I think of Spring - although you should not be fooled by their fresh-faced appearance. Anemone japonica Rosenschale will bloom proudly and reliably throughout summer to the very end of November. Large showy pale pink flowers make the perfect addition to an autumnal garden.

Asters will burst into a frenzy throughout summer into late autumn to provide autumnal colour on a grand and luxurious scale. These stunning bloom heads will brighten up any dull space to create unprecedented colour and vibrancy when companion plants settle down to slumber.

These are the stars of the show for winter baskets. Abundant, lush green foliage will bubble beneath vibrant two-toned petals from October to April. These are a personal favourite of mine due to the stunning rich purple tones and the dash of bright yellow. I love how these colours complement one another to create a wondrous and beautiful bloom.


Maybe I just need to add a few of these blooms, rather than artificial lighting?  What do you think? 

What plants do you have in your garden that will brighten up your November beds, borders and pots?

I would love to hear from you, as always! 



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