The colours seem to intensify in autumn.  When the sky is blue, it is intensely blue.

Walnut tree in October

When the sun is shining, there is clarity: a crispness; definition.

Judas Tree in October

The trees are drawing in, gathering themselves, pulling resources in to their core.

Peach tree foliage in October

They don’t have to leave us with this gorgeous display, but they do.  They give it for free, and it is up to us whether we notice.


We think of autumn as being misty, and sometimes it is. When the mists clear, we appreciate what we see.

Bright Border in October

There are so many shapes and textures in this border, I get a bit lost in them.  I have to focus on one area,

Rosa ‘Thomas a Becket’

and then another,

Euphorbia griffithii ‘Fireglow’

before I can pull it all together.

Bright Border in October

There is complexity and subtlety in the colours too.  I love the mountain ash’s ombre of russet, vermillion, gold and green.

Bright Border in October

And the burst of deepest purple from Salvia ‘Amistad’.  Purple isn’t a colour I associate with autumn, but looks fabulous against the sunset tones.

Salvia ‘Amistad’

Some trees have lost their leaves already, and so we get different views across the garden.  I am enjoying our neighbour’s copper beech, seen through the bare branches of our amelanchier.

Rose Garden in October

I can choose where to focus my gaze: on the foreground, or in the distance.  Right now I’m enjoying the fiery peony foliage with the purple Salvia x jamensis ‘Nachtvlinder’.

Looking from the Rose Garden to the Walnut Tree and Cutting Patch

There are a few plants to be divided, some weeds to be pulled, some bulbs to plant.

Cutting Patch in October

Once I get started it is a pleasure.  One thing leads to another.

Rose Garden in October

This is the best kind of gardening.  Pottering in the sunshine, and then standing back with a cup of tea in my hand, to just drink it in.

Being outdoors, pottering in the garden, listening to the birds, noticing colours and textures and patterns, enjoying a cup of tea… These are all forms of self-care.  They are nurturing for my soul.  They help to recharge my batteries so that I can manage my life in other areas. Self-care brings clarity.  I am refreshed, and can see things more clearly. 

What do you do for your own self-care?

If you would like to receive a regular dose of self-care, then you can click on the ‘Follow’ button at the bottom of this page.  You will receive an email each time I post.

Life is full of burdens, and it’s good to have a little space in the day to recharge, and be in a positive space.  That’s my intention with this blog.



10 Comments Add yours

  1. excellent images/observations. I enjoyed a circular rainbow @ the sun this week due to ice crystals of cirrus high clouds moving in advance of the front predicted to drop rain for several days. Fall gives us the opportunity to slow and savor as we rush to do final tasks before winter. See Ruth Stout’s ideas re. no-till gardening. She is an inspiration. Many videos at You Tube.

  2. Beautiful photos, Ali, especially against that gorgeous blue sky. Such wonderful colours, I love the impact of that salvia. I always feel autumn gives us a chance to see things differently in the garden and nature, literally ‘in a different light.’ What better self-care is there than being outside and enjoying it with mindfulness? For me there is also something very special about the robins’ autumn song – even if they are just waiting to do a worm raid on freshly dug ground!

    1. Ali says:

      I have been enjoying the birds again, and have started feeding them again. They are such a lovely presence popping in and out of the apple tree.

  3. susurrus says:

    I love the idea of ombre in the foliage – I haven’t heard it put that way before.

    1. Ali says:

      I have a slight obsession with the word!

  4. bcparkison says:

    Here in the South we don’t get the blaze of color some do but eveything changes in some way. Even the weeds.

    1. Ali says:

      Yes. There is a change in form here, which is less obvious. Everything goes a little more skinny and diaphanous; lighter and more twinkly.

  5. Chloris says:

    Your autumn garden is gorgeous. Yes, potttering in the garden is heaven, there is nowhere else I would rather be and nothing else I would rather be doing.

  6. Heyjude says:

    It certainly makes me feel happier when I have a blue sky and sunshine. Pottering is much more pleasant.

  7. I’ve noticed the intense blue of the skies, too. Amazing. Love ’em.

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