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Plants for Bugs

RHS research project monitoring insects in native and non-native garden border plants.

Proper frost

Posted by Helen Bostock Plantsforbugs on 03 Dec 2013 at 03:22 PM


We're now in no doubt that autumn made way for winter recently. A particularly hard frost blackened our Mirabilis and fuchsias (see above). This year I've taken the decision not to apply a winter mulch of straw to any of the beds. It's a lot of hard work and hasn't, as a rule, guaranteed the survival of the borderline tender plants. They'll just have to take their chances!


A heavy frost is also very efficient at bringing down autumn leaves. My walnut tree at home usually sheds its entire load overnight when a heavy frost hits. This viburnum at Deers Farm appears to have done the same;



The wet autumn encouraged a late flush of weeds and growth, like this creeping Acaena microphylla (below) that has made a bid for freedom over the edge of one of our trial beds! Cutting it back wasn't too difficult but its burrs will attach themselves to fleece jackets. Anyone else noticed untimely growth?



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