Gardening with Clive Sullivan of Cameron Landscapes and
Ballylesson Garden Centre
THE last trumpet of colour before autumn is being played out in
gardens all around us right now.
We are surrounded by shrubs
in full bloom, and they'll carry on for a long time yet. But
what happens next? Well of course after the flower comes the
fruit. All that frenetic summer pollination is creating billions
of new seeds; gift wrapped and colourfully advertised berries.
In late summer the native Rowan tree is laden with berries.
These Sorbus varieties offer a great selection of colours: Some
are light pink berries (Sorbus villmorinii) Bone red (Sorbus 'acuparia')
and some yellow (S. Joseph's Rock). You cannot beat a Sorbus
tree for sheer range of colour and interest anytime now through
to leaf fall. They really light up their leaves before waving
goodbye to them. Fully hardy, the Mountain Ash (as Rowans are
also known) was a sacred symbol to the Welsh. Funny then the
next Archbishop of Canterbury, a Welshman, should be called
Rowan Williams, isn't it?
At the Garden Centre look out for
Caryopteris 'Worcester Gold', a 3ft high aromatic delight with
golden foliage and lavender blue flowers. These look good with
herbs, or perhaps underplanting taller Roses, in groups of
three, but they are gorgeous in a gravel bed.
performer for this crossover time of year is the Beauty Berry;
Callicarpa bodinieri var. giraldii 'profusion'. Try saying that
after a few drinks l Despite its long winded, Latin name, this
is worth having for its striking purple berries; almost gem
like; small and sparkling. It has excellent autumn foliage too,
purple tinged foliage in spring, and purple flowers in mid
summer. Maybe' the artist formerly/currently known as Prince
should own one. This is ' best planted, in groups, to ensure
cross pollination, Put Cafficarpa at the back of your border
because it reaches 10 ft high and 8 ft wide, and the Beauty
Berry will really live up to its name.