August is a bittersweet month since, while it consistently brings some of the best weather seen in England, it also signals the beginning of the end for summer. Like the knowledge that every Sunday must precede our return to work, so our enjoyment of August is always slightly tainted by that fact, but, to help combat these feelings of melancholy, we’ve created a list that will heighten your appreciation of summer’s ending, much like the glorious sunset before nightfall.
Here’s a short list of our favourite shrubs for later summer flowers:
1. Abelia grandiflora ‘Sunshine Daydream’
This is a bushy, evergreen with a spherical habit with variegated foliage and fragrant, tubular, white or pale pink flowers deepening in colour with age as autumn progresses. Prefers full sun, but well drained soil.
2. Ceratostigma willmottianum
This compact, bushy and deciduous shrub has a tendency to spread with growth and has vibrant blue flowers through summer and autumn. It is also extremely hardy and will thrive in either sheltered or exposed conditions with full or partial sun.
3. Fatsia japonica
One of the more understated on our list, Fatsia has bold, palmate, dark green leaves along with clusters of candelabra-like, creamy white flowers and small, dark berries. Prefers a sheltered spot but will also grow in shade.
4. Hebe ‘Autumn Glory’
What a wonderfully fitting name since glory throughout autumn is what we all crave once summer begins to fade. Produces columns of clustered purple flowers on upright stems complemented by a dark green foliage edged with red.
5. Hibiscus syriacus
Often known as Rose Mallow, this deciduous shrub produces blue, pink or white, trumpet-like flowers with crimson stamens forming a sort of bullseye among its emerald, lobed foliage.
Thus concluded our list of late summer flowers – one that hopefully will have you savouring the transience of the passing season and the transition to autumn, leaving you better prepared to appreciate next year’s summer.