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Autumn Sedums

The Autumn brings us spectacular colours as deciduous trees and shrubs prepare themselves for the winter rest. As well as coloured leaves, berries and stems there are also a few late flowering perennials that look particularly good at this time of year.

Asters were a topic I covered last year and found to my horror that they had changed their name to Symphyotrichum which really rolls off the tongue and causes no end of problems for my RHS students! I remember when Senecio greyii changed to Brachyglottis just after I’d learnt it and refused to use it! Botanists have their explanations of course and I completely understand why sometimes plants have to be re-classified but why such complicated names?

Sedum spectabile ‘Autumn Joy’

Such a good name and so descriptive.

A very hardy herbaceous perennial that is reliable and easy to care for. It is adored by bees and butterflies and flowers alongside Asters, (Symphyotrichum!) Helianthus, Helenium, Rudbeckia and many others. The heads look good over the winter and protect the newly emerging shoots throughout the winter. It can be divided and propagated in the Spring easily and reliably.

What not Sedum???

Walking around new Wisley last week up the meandering Piet Oudolf borders I was shocked to see that the beloved Sedum specabile ‘Autumn Joy’ (an easy to remember name from my youth and an easy to learn name by my RHS students) was labelled HYLOTEPHIUM!! I’m glad I found that out before this went to press………more fun and games in the plant identification tests!

I don’t think all Sedums have changed, just the upright ones as they evidently differ significantly from the creepy ones (?)

Cathie’s Gardening School Services

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1.Horticultural consultancy teaching you in your own garden. This includes identifying your plants (with the proper names!) and how to prune them correctly at the right time of year to help you work out a maintenance programme.

2.Cathie’s Garden Army team of horticulturists can transform your garden, often in a day, following a consultancy. You may prefer us to do the hard work for you and pruning according to season.

3. Maintenance by team members once the garden is maintainable depending on our availability.

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