November seems more like October this year with the glorious autumn colours carrying on well into what is usually a dismal month. I always used to dislike this gloomy time of the year in the garden, but that was before I discovered hardy chrysanthemums. They start blooming in September but I seek out the later-flowering ones which start in October and carry on into November. They light up the garden in rainbow colours, but they are also long lasting in a vase. I still have dahlias in bloom but most years I rely on chrysanthemums for vibrant late colour.
I set them off with a few plumes of various grasses. This rare Chrysanthemum ‘Buxton Ruby’ is the darkest one I have. It has sprays of frilly little flowers with a yellow daisy centre.
Autumn colours are here with the apricots, orange and yellows. Chrysanthemum ‘Picasso’ is rather rare. It is fully double with masses of small apricot flowers. It makes quite a compact plant .
As well as oranges and bronzes I have quite a few yellow chrysanthemums, the one I used here is Chrysanthemum ‘Cottage Lemon’. It is still going strong although the asters in the photo which I took a few weeks ago are over now. So the clump no longer looks like a fried egg, sunny side up.
The vibrant bronze one in the centre is perhaps my favourite chrysanthemum of all. It is the peerless Chrysanthemum ‘Chelsea Physic Garden’ which has double flowers with golden lights on the backs of the petals. It lasts late into the year and I sometimes pick it on Christmas Day.
I have popped a few pinks in the vase; I probably wouldn’t mix these colours in summer but at this time of the year I am happy to have a kaleidoscope of clashing colours. One of my favourite pinks has quilled pink flowers and was discovered in a garden here in Suffolk. It is called ‘Mavis Smith’ and makes very vigourous plant.
I have just one white chrysanthemum and it has lovely raggy white double flowers. It is called ‘Edelweiss’. It really lights up the vase.
For the dining table I made a little arrangement in a little Danish vase which I am rather fond of .
I used some sprigs of Mahonia x media ‘Charity’ which always blooms in November and various salvias which are still lingering
Chrysanthemum ‘Marion’ has a lovely, semi-double coppery-orange flower with a yellow ring round the centre
The pink double one in the above photo is a Jaapanese chrysanthemum called ‘Kei Kyo’. It looks lovely growing with blue Salvia uliginosa annd the red butterfy flowers of the China Rose ‘Bengal Beauty’ which is in bloom for months on end.
If I still haven’t persuaded you to try growing chrysanthemums to fill up your October and November vases, then here are a few more.