Seen at the Festival of the Tree

...if you would be happy all your life, plant a garden ~ Chinese proverb

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Tree Following With Lucy: September


This month my ash tree forms the backdrop to the plant activity happening below it. As in other years, the plants growing against the garden fence have stretched themselves upwards to meet the lower branches of the tree. These are the ones NAH is so sure he wants to get rid of.

The thin, diagonal 'branches' you can see in the foreground are from my Rosa 'Rambling Rector'. This rose certainly lives up to its name and makes regular bids for freedom beyond my garden. I often have to untangle it from the ash tree at this time of the year.

The main plant you can see is Clematis 'Kermesina', a more delicate looking clematis of the viticella type. Don't be fooled, those stems are quite wiry and just like the rose it strives upwards in its bid to bend other, more sturdy plants to its will. This clematis always surprises me as it's usually hidden amongst the rose, then it pops out into the open in the autumn. I love its rich red blooms, especially when the dappled afternoon sunshine begins to shine through them.

The proximity of the ash's lower branches to my rose/clematis combo means I'm having a think about the future of the plants along my fence. More on that anon.

Have a look at Loose and Leafy's Tree Following entry to find out how Lucy and the rest of this year's tree followers are getting on this month.

14 comments:

  1. When the picture first came up I thought the hips were fruits of the ash and went off into thoughts of Rowan. (Lots of Mountain Ash where I've been in Wales.) This scene is going to look very different next month!

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    1. We have rowan and hawthorn further along Lucy and the colours do indeed echo the clematis flowers. Sadly the ash only has lots of seeds which I then have to pull up every year! Autumn's here already - the maples have changed and I've had to sweep our front drive this week. I reckon it's the earliest I've done that.

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  2. Do you cut the clematis hard back each year?

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    1. Hi Sue, yes I do. It happens whilst I'm cutting the Rambling Rector back really hard as I'm using the rose a its support.

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  3. The clematis look so lovely climbing up your ash tree, so pretty.

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    1. Thanks Pauline - I was admiring it in full sunshine this morning :)

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  4. The clematis is beautiful, and I've heard good things about Rambling Rector as well. No doubt it's tricky keeping them under control though, especially once they've got high up out of reach.

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    1. Rambling Rector is very vigorous, so was a great choice for clothing a long fence which needed to keep people out of the garden. However, it's just slightly too vigorous and the promised hips aren't happening as well as they should. Hence my reluctant rethinking of what needs to go there.

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  5. I love the look of a clematis or rose climbing a tree as long as the tree likes it too.

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    1. Good point Donna - some roses e.g. Kiftsgate can overwhelm a smaller tree, though they do look spectacular draped over larger subjects. I don't let my clematis and rose get to that stage.

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  6. Lovely to see flowers growing up through the tree. I've tried to do the same with a clematis growing through my cherry tree. The clematis did very well this year, it's second; I'm wondering now whether the cherry tree will be big enough for it next year. Can clematis be transplanted, do you know?

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    1. HI Caro, I've never tried it. I think it should be possible in the autumn if you dig carefully to keep as many roots as possible and then keep it well watered whilst it settles down. Worth a try?

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  7. Do you find that the ash seedings come up everywhere? I used to have one in my old garden and it drove me crazy with carpets of young trees.

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    1. I do indeed chloris! One of my previous Tree Following posts showed how I miss some of them too. I had a 5ft high tree grow before I noticed it was there :o

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