There was a fine tracery of frost this morning.  It made the table sparkle.


The frost helped me to focus in on the finer details.  Like the dessicated flowerheads of Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’.  They remind me of lacework.


Raspberry canes are providing startling autumn colour in Thugs’ Corner.


Their pleated leaves enhance their colour.


I carried on along the fence that divides the garden from the allotment.  This is a Penstemon donated from my mum’s garden.  It is beautiful with the sunlight shining through, and with a twinkling background of Beautiful Bokeh.


This is the driest part of the garden, and only the toughest survive.  Salvia x jamensis ‘Nachtvlinder’ does well.  Nachtvlinder is Dutch for ‘moth’.  There is something a bit flittery about it.


Euphorbia characias subsp. wulfenii (Mediterranean Spurge) also thrives in dry conditions.  This spurge is not like the badly behaved Euphorbia amygdaloides var. robbiae.  It doesn’t send runners through the soil.  This was planted in the spring and has made good growth.  I am enjoying the glaucous blue-green foliage.


It looks lovely with the turquoise lichen on the fence.  Turquoise is a precious colour in the garden.


This is our bonus apricot tree.  It arrived with its leading stem broken off.  The suppliers sent a replacement, which provided us with one perfect apricot this year.  This is the broken tree, looking remarkably mended.  That’s the power of a little sunshine, a little water and a little love.  It may even fruit next year.


The frost has dimpled my rosehips.  Such is life.


Cornus alba ‘Sibirica’ (Dogwood) berries look like pulsating alien eggs about to hatch.


Dogwood benefits from the wetter soil at the bottom of the garden. I have two or three new plants from when I stuck pruned sticks in the ground in spring. All you have to do is make sure you stick them in the right way up. Now the new ones are interlaced with the old.  They will make a lovely display of bright red stems through winter.


These are the huge leaves of Catalpa bignioniodes (Indian Bean Tree).  The surface of the leaf looks as if it has been dusted with gold lustre.


This is Cercis siliquastrum (Judas Tree).  Somehow we lived here for four years before I realised we had a Judas Tree in our front garden.  I had lusted over mature Judas Trees in other peoples’ gardens without realising we had a little junior tree of our own.  Its blossom, which sprouts directly from the branches and trunk, astonished me in spring (see Cauliflorescence!).  To quote Mary Poppins, sometimes people can’t see what’s in front of their own noses.


As the leaves flutter off, I become more aware of the network of branches beneath.  Trees do postmodernism.  They show their inner workings in winter.


I love frosted fallen leaves.


Each of these veins has been transporting oxygen, carbon dioxide, water and nutrients around the tree since spring.  They mirror our own veins and arteries.  And rivers and streams.  And our transport networks.  Everything is interlaced.


These leaves will be collected to make leaf mulch.  It will be added to our homemade compost and will be fed back into the soil.  It is one of the many circles of life we see in the garden.


The leaves on the hedges are yet to fall.  I love the knitting together of species in this hedge.  This is Dogwood.


This is Field Maple.


It takes all sorts to make a good hedge.  Our hedgerows are typically made up of Field Maple, Dogwood, Elder, Hazel, Hawthorn, Dog Rose, Guelder Rose, Blackthorn and Crab Apple.  They are then interwoven with Ivy, Honeysuckle and Clematis vitalba (Old Man’s Beard).  It is this diversity of species that allows everyone’s needs to be catered for throughout the year: birds, insects, small mammals, fungi, lichen.

We are all part of the same Universe.  We are all interlaced.

Everything we do has a ripple effect outwards.  Whether it is calling out subtle racism or reducing our use of plastic, we can all effect change in the world.  Small actions make a big difference.

What small action have you taken today?  It might be a simple act of kindness, or an ethical purchase.  What difference might it make?

The Mindful Gardner aims to bring you a little spark of positivity in a confusing world.  To remind you of your vital place in all this, and how we are all connected.

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16 Comments Add yours

  1. Jackie Knight says:

    Very beautiful, love the posts.

    1. Ali says:

      Thank you Jackie, I am glad you have enjoyed them.

  2. bcparkison says:

    Frost does bring a sparkle to the garden. I love fading hydrangea….they dry so beautifully.

    1. Ali says:

      You appreciate the structure when the colour has gone, don’t you?

  3. janesmudgeegarden says:

    I love the photo of the Cornus berries. Such perfection with the soft palette of colours in the background. Even in the last days of Autumn you’ve found inspirational things in your garden, Ali. This morning MrMG and I walked into town for coffee. It’s a 6km walk, meant for exercise, but it also means we didn’t use the car, so I hope that counts as a small action.

    1. Ali says:

      Oh, yes, definitely! That is a good bit of exercise too. Tick, tick!

  4. Heyjude says:

    Love the frosty leaves! And the buttery Field Maple. Time that I had another wander along the lanes before all the leaves have gone.

    1. Ali says:

      They change so quickly, don’t they?

  5. Eliza Waters says:

    Beautiful autumn light casts everything in a warm glow. Love the deep veining in the fallen leaves – patterns everywhere!

    1. Ali says:

      There are! You can see where fabric designers get their inspiration…

  6. Your close-ups allow me to focus on the fine detail that normally I tend skim over in my own garden. All I see is a brown mess of frozen leaves still stuck onto branches and stems because a dry cold front moved in too quickly last week with sub-freezing temps. Although bright sunshine every other day warms the garden up a bit, the deep freeze returns in the night. Thank you for forcing me to look closer at the dogwood berries still red, rose hips bright against curled brown leaves, and herbs appearing frosted with “sugar”!

    1. Ali says:

      That is a really lovely comment to read. That’s exactly why I write this blog. Thank you. x

  7. Emma Cownie says:

    Beautiful photos – for catching the late autumn sunshine and the frost.

    1. Ali says:

      Thanks Emma. Frost is a beautiful gift, especially when there is still a bit of colour in the garden.

  8. Annette says:

    Your images celebrate the beauty of the season! Bravo 🙂 I find hydrangea flowers endlessly fascinating too as models. Hope the frost stays away for a while here as I’m still waiting for some latecomers to flower. Keep warm 🙂

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