Flaming foliage in the garden

Autum leaves orange banner

Flaming foliage in the garden

MAY 2015 | NELL CARR

 

 Mike Moores

PARKS AND gardens in Tasmania at this time of year are ablaze with a multicoloured

display of trees and shrubs, from the pale butter yellow of the 40m high Gingko biloba (Maidenhair Tree), to the diminutive, dark red spikey shrub Berberis thunbergii “Atropurpurea”.

Another of the same species, “Rose Glow”, is a brilliant orange. Other less common plants which colour up well before losing their leaves are the 15m Liquidamber, and Parrotia persica, a smaller tree of 9m. Nyssa silvatica is a small-leaved, drought tender tree of 20m,

which turns red, yellow and green at this time of the year.

Liriodendron tulipifera (the Tulip Tree), at 40m, is a striking bright yellow in Autumn.

As its name suggests, the flowers are reminiscent of tulips, appearing in summer, but as they are green, they are not easily distinguished from amongst a copious covering of large palmate leaves.

The slender variety of these trees, L. fastigiata, have been planted on the median strip of a section of Emu Bay Road in Deloraine.

The ornamental grape vine, Vitis vinifera, is easily propagated from the leafless winter twigs. Two or three of these, inserted two buds deep into a pot of clean soil, will sprout leaves when Spring arrives , and will quickly cover a fence or trellis or the walls of a building, and, so long

as they are in full sunshine, will turn copper, and then a brilliant red in late Autumn.

As with the fruiting grapes, they are pruned back to a few short leaders once their leaves have fallen.

In the vegie garden:

Experience has shown that cattle just love those sugar-sweet two metre corn stalks, so any reader who has a few weaners, or a house cow, or has a neighbour with some, they would no doubt be grateful for them.

They are too tough to break up small enough for compost, and such a valuable source of fibre

should be utilised.

Save seeds from the best tomatoes and dry out on a saucer in a sunny window.

Refrigerate when thoroughly dry in small labelled envelopes.