Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – March 2015

Today is garden bloggers foliage day (GBFD) – a day dedicated to celebrating the backbone of the garden – foliage!

GBFD is hosted by Christine at Creating my own Garden of the Hesperides, and it’s a great time to check out the foliage in gardens all across the globe.

As summer fades into autumn, I thought I would share some of the last of the summer foliage trees before they start to change hue.

This year, I am most surprised by the little Copper Beech I planted (Fagus sylvatica ‘purpurea’) – it has had the most shimmery purple, almost black leaves all summer long. Normally at this time of year, the Copper Beech reverts to green before changing to the oranges and browns of autumn, but so far I still have almost midnight foliage.

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Copper Beech

You can just see the first hints of green creeping back into the leaves which have made it through the summer unburnt and remarkably only infrequently chewed.

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Copper Beech

As it has been such a slow grower (it has been in the garden for over a year and has not put on any new growth) I’ve religiously fed it with a liquid seaweed mix each week; that may have something to do with the healthy foliage – although there still has been no growth 😦

Not too far away from the midnight tones of the copper beech is the rosy burgundy shade of a Japanese Maple still in its summer leaf.

This one is Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’ :

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Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’

Its leaves are obviously more tasty to insects, but it still looks good with its summer coat 🙂

Happy GBFD and happy gardening 🙂

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25 thoughts on “Garden Bloggers Foliage Day – March 2015

    • Thanks Marion! Copper beeches need a cool summer to thrive; if the average daytime maximum is much above 86F then the tree really struggles; especially if the days and nights are humid as well. Here we have an average summer day-time high of about 70F, which keeps the leaves healthy, but it just needs to produce more!!!!

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    • Thanks Chloris – it certainly is a stunner – and it’s one of the few that keeps it’s burgundy colour all through the summer, it only goes green for about a week before it dons its autumn coat 🙂

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  1. Acer palmatum ‘ Bloodgood’ has a wonderful colour, looks the perfect contrast to the dark foliage of the beech. Thanks for sharing your foliage with us again Matt, I enjoy seeing what is happening in your garden on the other side of the world. I added the link to this post to your comment, you forgot to add it.

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    • Thanks for adding the link, Christina – I was in a bit of a rush to get out the door this morning 🙂 You often see silver and grey tones near each other, but I thought I would try something on an (ultimately) grander scale using contrasting purple shades…

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    • Thanks! It was one of the first trees I put in, so it would be about 1.5 years old…it’s definitely looking better this year than the first year I put it in – some insect had taken a liking to it and stripped almost 2/3 of its leaves overnight!

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    • Thanks – it’s definitely one of those trees that I have planted for the next generation to enjoy…it is just soooooo slow growing but once they get around 10 years it should be quite a handsome tree

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  2. I admire that Copper Beech. Unfortunately, it’s not suited to this climate and I guess I couldn’t grow it any way – it’s too tall to be tolerated by the neighbors. I do grow a couple of Japanese maples but they’re touchy here as they’re prone to leaf burn.

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    • I couldn’t imagine having to consider someone 10 houses away when I choose what to plant in my garden….you’ve the patience of a saint! When I lived in Sydney, I found that to get maples to stay looking decent during the spring heatwaves (which were hot & dry, just like your santa anna winds) I had to give them afternoon shade or else they would scorch

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    • One of my next door neighbours came over and commented that about 20 years ago (where I have planted the copper beech) a large pine tree had blown over…it could explain why this tree has shown so little growth. Although everything else in the bed thrives. As you say, it does happen!

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