When the leaves begin to turn blazing shades of red, yellow and orange, autumn is here.
In my eyes there is no better sign of autumn than when the leaves begin to turn blazing shades of red, yellow and orange. I have started to notice this happening while I am driving to work over the past couple of weeks. The trees that you would drive past without giving a second thought are now suddenly flaming spectacles that really catch your eye as you go past.
I often find that during the summer, for many gardeners, trees simply fade into the background and can be overlooked in favour of all the bright and wonderful flowers that are in Bloom. In autumn however trees put on a theatrical display of colour that screams for attention as everything else in the garden becomes more subdued.
Over the past few weeks in CountryLife I have had a lot of customers coming in to find trees that add some intense autumn colour to their gardens. And really there is an endless list of great trees to consider planting for autumn colour. Before I start recommending trees to people however I always remind them that trees are not an impulse buy for the garden they are something that should be thought about carefully before buying.
Before I start recommending trees to people however I always remind them that trees are not an impulse buy for the garden they are something that should be thought about carefully before buying.
What to think about when buying a tree
The most important thing to think about is space. But not the space the tree will take up now but the space it will take up in 10 or 20 years’ time when it is mature.
You want to make sure the tree will still look appropriate at that time as it can be very costly to remove a tree and nearly impossible to successfully move a mature tree without re-mortgaging your house!
Different autumn trees
Once you are sure you have the space and right conditions for a tree in your garden the best part starts, choosing your tree. I have been reminded of a few of my favorite trees for autumnal colour.
One of the popular trees with customers for autumn colour is Liquid Amber. As the name suggests the leaves of this tree turn a rich amber colour as the temperatures begin to drop. Liquid amber comes from the eastern United States and grows well in mild areas on fairly dry soil.
Mountain Ash is another firm favorite with Irish gardeners and has been for many years now. The most common Mountain Ash you will see has rich dark red berries which form in great big clusters on the tree. However you can also get yellow, pink and white fruiting varieties that may be more attractive to some gardeners.
They make an attractive compact tree for gardeners who have limited space available for trees in their garden.
Those looking for some more bang for their buck should consider crab apple trees as you will not only get autumn interest thanks to the berries but in spring you will have a fantastic display of blossom too. Malus Gorgeous produces fantastic ruby red fruit in autumn that many gardeners who like to cook will use to produce crab apple jelly with.
Another iconic tree for autumn colour to think about is Japanese maple as they really make a great addition to any garden. Japanese maples put on fantastic firework display of colour in autumn and the colour seems to intensify as it gets colder.
They are slow growing which makes them great for small gardens or even to have in a large container on a patio. A stunning type of Japanese maple is Osakazuki, whose bright, vibrant colour is ideal for adding autumn colour to a garden.
We’re here to help
If you need any help with choosing the best trees or shrubs for your garden talk to any of our horticulturists in store. We’d love to help. It’s always very helpful to bring in some photos of your garden to help us visualise the space you are working with.