1) Nerines, mostly sarniensis hybrids, are a mainstay of our autumn rockery.
2) Instead of thinking buxus hedges, think instead about lines and definition in the garden. There are other ways to achieve a similar outcome without the blighted buxus hedge – Abbie’s column.
3) Our mild and dry autumn continues – weekly garden tasks and hints.
4) It may be six months until our annual Garden and Rhododendron Festival here in Taranaki, but dedicated garden openers are hard at work and counting down already.
Our rockery has two main periods when it is at its fullest and most colourful – in the early spring when dwarf daffodils, snowdrops and many other tiny treasures bloom and right now in autumn when the nerines and cyclamen hederafolium are at their best. My summer mission taking apart every pocket in the rockery has borne fruit with renewed vigour apparent throughout. Some may think the nerines on the garish side but we love their autumn display. We have a whole range of colours now from nearly apricot through coral, orange, reds, pastel pinks to highlighter pink and deeper, smoky colours bordering on purple. Felix Jury worked with the nerines, mainly sarniensis hybrids and he acquired some of the Exbury hybids over 40 years ago. Most of the cultivars in our garden are unnamed hybrids from that time although Mark has also had a play in his turn and did name one, Coral Star, which we have sold in the past. Felix’s preference leaned towards the smoky plum colours and he named two: Smoky Queen and Nelson’s Blood.