The caramel-fragrant leaves of the Katsura tree have already fallen, as have those of three horse chestnut kin, the two Ohio buckeyes (Aesculus glabra) and the Yellow buckeye (A. flava). Both the Yellow and the Ohio buckeyes have similar foliage and pale yellowy-green flowers, and the only way I can distinguish betweeen them is by their fruit which are up to 6cm., dark mustard (Dijon?) and smooth in A. flava, and not more than 5cm., pale mustard (Colman’s?) and prickly in A. glabra.Both species have attractive yellow-scarlet fall colour, but their leaves fall early.
This is one of our favourite times of year, the canvas colours and languid tones of fall making it the ideal moment for appraising the shape of the garden and not just this season’s floral successes and failures.The Maple Bed continues its tangled brightness, colchicums multiply in the Jungles (Maureen insists their colours are more intense than usual), Cyclamen hederifolium continues to do well in the Anniversary Garden (though elsewhere small corms appear to have fallen victim to chipmunks), Sweet Autumn clematis fills the Driveway with its almond and vanilla fragrances, and the yellow-flowered C. rehdereana continues amazingly on the Front Porch. But what will be flowering here on our Open Garden day is uncertain; the year continues its wayward trajectory. “Time,” wrote that neglected poet, Sidney Keyes, “slips between my fingers like a leaf.”
See also Photos of Lilactree Farm, by You Grow Girl