October in the Garden

It’s so lovely to feel a chill in the air in the early mornings, a sign that our heat and humidity are past and we can look forward to cooler and drier days.  Here and there are a few signs of autumn.


A few of my orchids which live outside most of the summer under the shade of some trees are starting to flower.


This one looks a fitting color with the lichens, silver bark and air plant.



Pink Muhly Grass always looks spectacular at this time of the year and lights up as the morning sun catches it.

Plumbago loves this time of year also and can usually be trusted to put on a show this month.  I have some in a big container in my back garden.



Plumbago is just that perfect shade of blue!

More blues from some Salvias with a few roses just beginning to flower again.




Lovely Leonotis and yellow Thryallis are flowering heavily in my front garden.  I have two big clumps of Leonotis out here but I think, being so big, they took a battering when Hurricane Matthew blew through Central Florida the other week.  Having lived through a really bad hurricane in North Carolina I was very worried about this one but it went a little further to the east than originally thought so we were spared the worst of it – just a lot of debris and branches to clear and pick up, but no major damage.

We had gone out to walk at the beach the week prior to the hurricane when it looked like this…


…But I would imagine the shoreline is less pristine now!

In my cutting garden I had planted a new crop of cut flowers in August and they have been giving me lots of lovely blooms to pick this month.




I have tried different Celosias this year and I have enjoyed their different shapes and colors.


This one is Celosia “Crushed Berries”.

Lots of branching sunflowers were planted too, both Valentine and Vanilla Ice


An August sowing of Zinnias has also been productive.




I love to be able to pick them for the house…


These are a mixture of Apricot Blush and Raggedy Ann Zinnias.

I have grown a lot of Cranberry Hibiscus from seed this year and it makes a lovely filler for vases.



Dahlias are a new addition to the cut flower garden this year.  It has been tricky to get them through the excessively hot summer this year but I have planted them in pots which made it easier to move them into shadier spots.  With the more comfortable temperatures they are beginning to respond and flower now.  As long as I can protect them from any frosts they should continue to flower until it warms up again in the spring.

I was happy to see the first buds open..





Cafe au Lait Dahlia

and my favorite one so far…


I had to pick it of course, just to celebrate the fact that I had actually managed to grow it!



Hopefully all the others will be flowering soon as well.

The Camellias are on their way with lots of buds beginning to open.



Gulf Fritillary Butterfly on newly opened Camellia

It’s a nice thought that we can finally be outside and make use of the gazebo we had built as it has just been too steamy to use it so far.


I have planted a lot of different Camellias in the little garden around it so hopefully there will be continual color from now until spring.  Hope you are enjoying some lovely autumn weather too! (or spring!)

Kate xx

28 thoughts on “October in the Garden

    1. Thank you so much! I’m glad you liked the Raggedy Anne Zinnias – they are so fun! I’m amazed by how many different types of Zinnias there are and already have some others I need to try for next year!


  1. Dear Kate ~ How wonderful to see what all is growing in your lovely gardens. Those little orchids are just beautiful!!! I love their coloring. I have some of the same plants as you growing in my own gardens. I think I better move my Leonotis from where it is, since it gets rather large.

    I’m glad your gardens suffered no real damages from Matthew. We have been having LOTS of wind and gray skies for the past week. Today we are supposed to get some much needed rain. I hope so, even though, I have a lot of overgrowth already that needs to be gotten rid of. 🙂

    Your post has inspired me to keep working in my own little gardens.

    Have a lovely weekend ~ FlowerLady


    1. Thank you so much Lorraine for your lovely comments. I really enjoy the orchids, not that I know too much about them but they are all so interesting. I hear you on the Leonotis as it does get really huge. I should have divided mine last year and paid the price with the high winds!


  2. Love your garden– especially the orchids. I am so in awe of having orchids outside lol! The gazebo is gorgeous– I hope you get to spend a lot of time out there! Yes, I need to think about zinnias for next year!


    1. Thank you Wendy! I really need to educate myself on the orchids – I’m afraid I tend to neglect them a bit but they don’t seem to mind! Yes hopefully now the weather is cooler we can spend more time outside and the gazebo is in a perfect spot under the trees. I think you would have so much fun with Zinnias next summer – so many different types and the butterflies love them! xx

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Chère Kate,
    Je viens de “rentrer” de la ballade dans ton jardin d’octobre. Quel bonheur ! Comme tout est délicieusement beau ! Kate, tu es une magicienne.
    Ici, c’est l’automne et rares sont encore les fleurs au jardin ; alors découvrir ces orchidées, ces zinnias, ces salvias, toute cette explosion de couleurs est un enchantement. Tes dahlias “café au lait” sont superbes et d’un rose qui donne envie de les manger !
    J’ai savouré cette promenade en faisant ma pause-thé de l’après-midi. Je ne pouvais rêver meilleure façon de me ressourcer.
    J’aime beaucoup ta gloriette (je trouve le mot anglais “gazebo” très rigolo) et c’est là que j’aurais aimé boire ma tasse de Darjeeling 😉 J’imagine que ce doit être merveilleux de se tenir là pour lire, papoter, ou tout simplement contempler le jardin …
    Merci Kate pour cette promenade d’automne dans ton si beau jardin !
    Les photos sont superbes, comme toujours, et nous font vraiment nous sentir chez toi, au creux de ton jardin. C’est là tout le talent et de la photographe et de la jardinière !…
    Virginie xxx


    1. Virginie you always leave me such lovely and extremely generous comments and of course, written in French it always sounds like poetry to me! Thank you so very much! I am glad you enjoyed all the color in the garden – it really is a lovely time of year here. I love the name Gloriette and I shall now call the gazebo Gloriette in honor of you! – it sounds so much nicer! xx


  4. Your photographs are so lovely Kate! I am glad you are able to get out in your garden again after the heat of the summer and I’m pleased that the hurricane didn’t cause too much damage. My husband grew zinnias this year and they flowered for weeks! They are definitely past their best now but we have decided to grow them again next year. I love the Celosias! These are new to me – I have only ever seen the larger cockscomb ones before. We have had a couple of much milder days but I have been so busy I haven’t been out in the garden. It seems such a waste to be indoors or shopping in the city on mild autumn days! I will have to see what I can manage tomorrow. Hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend. 🙂
    Clare xx


    1. Hello Clare! Thank you so much! How lovely that Richard had success with Zinnias this year. I think they are such a fun flower and it is lovely that they last so long – in the garden as well as in a vase. The butterflies love them here too. Celosia was a first for me here too and I would like to try the big cockscomb one for next year as it is so dramatic. Hopefully your mild weather continues for a bit longer – it will make for a much shorter winter! xx

      Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s all simply beautiful, Kate and so clear that you have thought it out well in advance to get this explosion of blossoms at exactly the right time. We rely on foliage for our autumn show, but your garden is just beautiful.


    1. Hello Patti! How lovely of you to visit my little blog! Thank you so much for your very lovely comment! I am not sure that I am really a very good planner, I just tend to plant a lot of very colorful things so maybe it just seems that way!! Hope your lovely autumn continues for a while longer.
      – Kate xx


  6. And it’s so lovely to hear from you! Nice pix, as always. what interesting orchids. And the lovely blue shade of the Plumbago at this time of year: I wonder if it would grow as a perennial in Southern Ontario.


    1. Hello Cynthia and thank you so much! The plumbago is such a lovely plant but it is a tender one even here. I bet it would be fine in your summer though if you would be able to keep it in a greenhouse or summer room perhaps?
      – Kate xx

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Kate! So much beautiful color! I too planted a few new Camellias last season. Can’t wait to see their blooms and your new ones too. Kudos to you on those lovely Dahlias! Isn’t it always more rewarding to grow the difficult plants? Have a wonderful fall. _Janice


    1. Hi Janice! Thank you very much! I think I am a bit crazy sometimes to take on so much in the garden but somehow I just can’t seem to stop taking on projects and the dahlias were definitely a challenge to me! Glad you didn’t suffer too much from the hurricane – aren’t we lucky now to be going into such lovely weather and to be able to look forward to those lovely Camellias – can’t wait to see your new ones! When I got mine home to plant I realized that they had taken the tags off and so now I have no idea which ones I bought!! :((
      – Kate xx


  8. Everything is so beautiful, Kate! I love your gazebo. I dream about adding one to my own yard someday. Yours is perfect, with such pretty details. And your zinnas and dahlias are a feast for the eyes. I really enjoyed this post–all the photos are just gorgeous!


    1. Hello Leslie! Thank you so much for visiting and commenting – I apologize for not being over sooner, but I will be catching up now. I lost my lovely cat Oliver recently which made me really sad 😦 I know you will understand as you love your beautiful cats too. I’m glad you like the gazebo. We waited ages to do this project but I’m so glad we have it now as it is such a lovely feature. I’m sure you would really enjoy one!
      – Kate xx


  9. How wonderful that you should have many pleasant months to enjoy the gazebo now 🙂 Your Dahlias are marvelous! I’ve been warned they usually bloom just in time to be fried by the dry heat here, so they’re rather low on my list of plants to experiment with, but I might have to give it a try someday… Meantime my zinnia seeds are waiting… 😉 I’ve not seen Raggedy Ann before; do you have a source for seeds? And how long can you keep the Plumbago in a container? It’s too big for a spot in any of my borders, but it’s such a splendid blue!

    I’ve just added your blog to my reader as I can’t get post updates using my new blogsite – hence my late arrival here! Hope you have a great week 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So sorry Amy – I just noticed your comment here. I am getting very behind! Thank you so very much. You are always so kind. The Raggedy Ann Zinnias have been really fun and have bloomed well. I believe the seeds came from Renee’s Garden seeds. I get a lot of seed from her. The plumbago has been in that pot for about 2 years. They do get quite big. I usually cut it hard back in late winter as it is a bit ugly by then. I’m not sure how long I’ll be able to keep it in there – If it starts to decline I’ll have to pull it out and plant it somewhere else. It really is a lovely blue isn’t it?! The Dahlias are an ongoing experiment and have been very challenging but now the weather is cooler they are responding quite well. The heat is really hard on them so they have had to spend the summer in the shade. I think it will be a question of me finding the best types for my climate as it appears there are some more heat tolerant than others. When the first flowers opened on the Cafe au Lait I was blown away so, at least for now, I will persevere!
      – Kate xx

      Liked by 1 person

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