Alluring Autumn Beauty

The time of year that Keats called the ‘Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness’, autumn is a season famous for its harvest times, turning leaves, cooling temperatures and darkening nights.

There is something quite magical and beautiful about this time of year; the sounds, the smells, the long, invigorating walks through fallen leaves and, of course, the colours. The fields and gardens are still green, the heather paints the mountainsides purple, and the trees are dressed in reds, yellows, oranges and golds, providing a breath-taking backdrop to your adventures.

In the cold nights, early sunsets and damp mornings, we can all recognise the tell-tale signs of that seasonal transition. Though we lament the end of summer, we look forward to the autumn – perhaps the most beautiful time to be in the UK.

During winter there is not enough light for photosynthesis to occur, so as the days shorten throughout autumn, the trees begin to close down their food production systems and reduce the amount of chlorophyll in their leaves.


Chlorophyll is the chemical which makes tree leaves green and as it declines other chemicals become more prominent in the leaves.

These chemicals are responsible for the vibrant ambers, reds and yellows of autumn. They are responsible types of flavonoids, carotenoids, and anthocyanins.

Did you know some of these chemicals are the same ones that give carrots (beta-carotenes) and egg yolks (luteins) their colours?

In Greek mythology, autumn began when Hades abducted Persephone to be the Queen of the Underworld. In distress Persephone’s mother, Demeter (the goddess of the harvest), caused all the crops on Earth to die until her daughter was allowed to return, marking spring.


After the glory of summer, autumn can be a tricky time in the garden, as plants start to die back for the winter. But the autumn garden need not be a damp, brown, spent space. With a bit of clever planting, you can make it a vibrant place to enjoy into November and beyond.

There are some of the most common autumn plants:

  • Anemone
  • Aster
  • Colchicum
  • Cyclamen
  • Helianthus
  • Hesperantha
  • Liriope muscari
  • Pennisetum


Category: Flowers
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