Into September

The Time of the Grass is over. The bank is cut, and the last load is waiting to be burned. Newly shaved, and missing the top layer of moss, the bank looks as bleached as a savannah in the dry season, but it will be green again within a few days. I’ve cracked half a bottle of champagne to ease the ache acquired by inching crabwise across the slope, swinging the Stihl in 18 inch arcs. I suppose it’s all good exercise, and certainly cheaper than going to a gym and doing something futile with weights, but, frankly I don’t want to see a hay rake again for several months.In compensation, the whole house is faintly scented with grass smoke, and I step outside at midnight for a last sniff of the aroma on the night air.  Tonight the volcano has obviously hit a thermocline. There’s rain on the way.

The colchicums show up well against the mown slope. They are early this year…usually I manage to get this section cut before they are through the ground, but I had to clear round them by hand, as they were already in flower. I ought to split them up and spread them – but I’m never sure when is the best time to do this, which is a good excuse for doing nothing.

September is a swing month – not summer, and not yet Autumn. But already there are signs of colour: Berberis darwinii is starting to redden. I planted this bush at the back of the pond about five years ago, having seen it in its full Autumn glory somewhere, but it has never really performed. Maybe this year it will?
Things are shaping up for a promising Autumn. There are more fungi around than usual, and I found a basket of field mushrooms for the first time in years. The cotoneasters are covered in berries. What we shall need to bring out the best colour are some early frosts and no gales to rip the trees bare before they turn.


12 thoughts on “Into September

  1. Congratulations Kininvie, you conquered it! And I happen to know that you were planning on the champagne, aches or no. (I suppose the chance of no aches was rather small.) Haggis and champagne? (Guessing not.)

    The autumn crocus are so pretty. I wish I could remember to plant them whenever one is supposed to plant them. Must work on that.

  2. congrats on another mammoth seasonal job completed and you’ve probably discovered more muscles than you every thought you had. A wistful post especially with the smoke signalling. Aren’t Colchiums best left to their own devices if thrivining so well and only lifted it showing signs of problems – after leaf die back and immediately replanted? The Autumn promises to be a bumper berried, fruit, nut and fungi season

    • Hi Laura – Whenever I do get round to digging up Colchicums, I discover they have formed great nests of bulbs – most of which have no room to grow. They don’t seem to spread out naturally – especially in the thick grass. So I really ought to help them on their way. The problem is that their leaf die back happens at the very busiest time of year – just when I don’t want to think about bulbs…..But I should, I really should

  3. It seems you could have some time to relax now. You deserve it. As much as the champagne. I know these are things that must be done but I use to prefer the slope before. I bet the grass will grow very fast though.

    • Alberto – Relax? You are joking! It’s primula splitting season. As for the bank – if it wasn’t cut, it would be a horrible mess of dead grass in Spring, and you wouldn’t like that, I’m certain.

  4. Ah, another Scottish garden blogger. Now that was one mammoth task, no other work outs necessary with jobs like this to do. As you say it wont take long to green up again, especially living in this part of the world. I will look forward to seeing more of your garden in future posts.

    • Hello Alistair, and thanks for visiting. I love your blog, which I’ve looked at a lot – trying to decide whether Aberdeen is a better growing environment than Livingston. I reckon it is (I certainly can’t grow agapanthus out of doors)

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