September is one of the unsung heroes of the calendar. Stuffed with plants that look fabulous just when you have clipped your lavender, finished with your sweet peas and are beginning to realise that some roses do not bloom for ever.
As always these are plants that you absolutely should NOT BUY NOW. September is the worst time to month to buy and plant them as they are generally putting all their energies into flowering, fruiting or giving you an autumn show..
Much better to admire them - for real if possible - and then put them on your planting list for this autumn or next spring
...and the top 5 in the Stunning in September charts are:
Viticella clematis. We have selected Polish Spirit, because it is such an unbelievably prolific flowerer but the whole of the viticella group of clematis look good around now. The flowers are small and simple (4-5 petals generally), and the plants look much more delicate than their large flowered cousins. All of which makes them almost the perfect climber to run up through one of thos flowering shrubs that looked fab earlier in the year. Good hosts might include Forsythia, Ribes, Philadelphus.
Viburnum opulus is now gracing our hedgerows and the edges of copses with its large heads of translucent, ruby red berries. This is "just" a hedge plant, but the Guelder Rose (which is no rose at all) is also our most beautiful native shrub. As autumn comes closer, the foliage is pretty special too.
Pyracantha has to be one of the most underated plants we sell. It has something going for it pretty much all year round and grows in dry shade. However we are talking about September, and this is the month when you will see Pyracatha carrying berries in shades of gold throiugh orange to red. And not just a few berries. Plants can become so heavily laden that they look as if they will fall over.
Rosa rugosa, AKA the Ramanas Rose, is a suckering, shrub rose. It does not really repeat flower, what happens is more haphazard than that with the odd flowers appearing in late October. In September however, the hips are thing that catch your eye. Because of its flowering habit, there are ripe hips and tiny green things that will carry on growing through the autumn. The ripe hips are about the size, and colour, of small ripe tomatoes. Some approach medium sized tomatoes. The bushes are covered in them making this rose not only a delight to your eye but a feast for wildlife as well.
Virginia Creeper. Probably needs no introduction. Parthenocissus quinquefolia is a long suffering climber that is happy in most soils and situations and will quickly cover even a large wall, covering it closely with five lobed leaflets of bright green. It is excellent for a north or north-east facing aspects where the shade brings out its the best autumn colour which you can see at its best this month.