Don’t you just love this month? The long shadows, the golden sunshine during the day, the amazing night skies and super moons, and even the chill in the morning that makes you know you’re alive. The cooler nights have triggered deciduous trees to start colouring, and in our garden here at Macquarie Park the ornamental pears, tupelo trees and Boston ivy covered tower are all turning scarlet, lighting up the garden.
The shafts of sunshine are intensified by bursts of golden flowers. Yellow salvia, mountain marigold, Mexican tarragon, daffodil yellow Euryops daisy and golden chrysanthemums brighten the garden, and late flowering rosesthat have been flowering for months continue relentlessly – no wonder they are so popular. Golden foliage looks beautiful right now too, and the glowing leaves of duranta with its orange berries and other variegated plants like golden abelia really come into their own.
Late flowering tropical plants are also magnificent now, with birds of paradise, gingers, bromeliads and clerodendrons blooming, and Tibouchinas looking magnificent with their mass of purple flowers. Traditional flowers such as Camellias are coming into their own, and climbing dipladenias and mandevilleas, both wonderful for pots, vertical gardens, hanging baskets and balcony gardens, cope with sun and shade and flower for months and months.
In the native garden, banksia and grevilleas always great go to’s- bird attracting and hardy, whilst Gymea lilies are beginning to send their rocketing red flowers skywards.If you are still unsure of your plant parenting skills and want to go with an impossible-to-kill succulent, the fabulous Euphorbias look amazing from now through to winter, with the ‘Firesticks’ glowing red and orange as the weather cools, ‘Snowflake’ appearing like a dusting of snow in the garden, and poinsettias glowing red.
It is, of course, Mother’s Day in May, and flowering begonias, cyclamen and orchids are always winning gifts.
For more details on what to do in the garden this month, check out our garden diary for May.