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August is what I call the relaxing month; a time when a lot of us are on holiday and the garden tends to quieten down with the end of the early summer flowering plants and the promise of the late summer flowers to come. 

So, here are my top 10 choices for plants to take you through to autumn…

1. Anemone x hybrida (Japanese anemone) ‘Honorine Jobert’

An elegant looking, white flowered, plant. This long lived perennial is ideal planted at the back of a border.  Consider leaving spent flowers on the stem so that birds can feed on the fluffy seedheads over winter.

  • Flowers August to September
  • Fully hardy
  • Grows up to 1.5m tall and 1m wide
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun or part shade
  • Sheltered site
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2. Buddleja davidii (Butterfly bush)

Who doesn’t love to see butterflies in the garden on a warm sunny day? This deciduous, shrub is very likely to attract them with its long tapering clusters of pink-purple flowers which flower over a long time during summer and into autumn.  It’s also drought tolerant and easy to grow making it the perfect choice for the busy gardener; all that’s needed is to cut back the shrub low in March taking off all the previous year’s growth which will then encourage the plant to produce lots of flowers later that year.

  • Flowers July to September
  • Fully hardy
  • Fast growing grows up to 4m tall and 8m wide
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun or part shade
  • Sheltered site
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3. Sedum (stonecrop) ‘Herbstfreude’

These undemanding, easy to grow plants are much loved by bees and butterflies.  Recently renamed with a bit of a tongue twister ‘hylotelephium’!  These will look great in most gardens whether you’re going for a cottage garden, wildlife garden or even a gravel garden.

  • Flowers August to October
  • Full hardy
  • Grows up to 60cm tall by 50cm wide
  • Well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Exposed site
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4. Helianthus (sunflower) ‘Lemon Queen’

This big, bright, lemon-yellow flowering perennial will happily compete with your annual sunflowers and comes with the added bonus that, despite being tall, it doesn’t need staking!  It’s vigorous and eventually forms good size clumps; ideal for the very back of borders.

  • Flowers August to September
  • Hardy throughout most of the UK
  • Grows up to 2m tall by 1m wide
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered site
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5. Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora (montbretia)

These reliable plants are an easy way to introduce late summer colour to the garden, with their arching stems of small lily-like rich orange colour flowers growing out from clumps of long thin leaves.

  • Flowers July to September
  • Hardy through most of the UK
  • Grows up to 60cm tall by 50cm wide
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered site
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6. Agapanthus (African lily) ‘Purple Cloud

Hailing from South Africa this half-hardy exotic will wow your guests with its large blue blooms which burst into flower in mid-to-late summer and last for weeks on end.  It’s perfect for both borders and growing in pots on patio as long as you can give it well-drained soil and a very sunny site.  If you’ve got heavy soil then mixing a lot of grit and some pieces of broken terracotta pots into the soil just before planting should help give it the conditions it loves.

  • Flowers July to September
  • Hardy
  • Grows up to 1m tall and 50cm wide
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered site
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7. Aster x frikartii (aster) ’Mönch’

There are loads of different varieties of asters to choose from and ‘Mönch’ is not only one of the earliest but also one of the longest flowering ones.  It’s a well-behaved disease resistant plant, forming a neat dome which rewards you with a constant display of large single, lilac colour daisy flowers well into autumn and is also much loved by butterflies and bees.

  • Flowers August to September
  • Fully hardy
  • Grows up to 90cm tall by 50cm wide
  • Well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered site
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8. Hydrangea serrata ‘Bluebird’

This is a lovely short shrub that does well in most aspects as long as it’s kept well-watered and grown in free draining soil.  It has large blue centred flowers surrounded by pale blue or pink (depending on your soil type) florets with the added bonus of a glorious autumn display of crimson coloured leaves.

  • Flowers July to September
  • Hardy throughout most of the UK
  • Grows up to 1m tall
  • Well-drained or moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun or part shade
  • Sheltered site
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9. Alstroemeria (Peruvian lily) ‘Indian Summer’

Most of us hope for a long hot Indian Summer and this aptly named variety sets the scene nicely with its bronze colour leaves and masses of burnt orange and yellow coloured flowers flecked with dark purple covering the plant for months on end.  Suitable for pots or planting in cottage garden style or cut flower borders.

  • Flowers June to November
  • Fully hardy
  • Grows to 75cm and width of 60cm
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered site
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10. Canna (canna) ‘Picasso’

This compact plant will grow well in a border or in containers on a patio. The showy yellow flowers are spotted with red speckles, giving an interesting impact. Deadhead them to encourage more flowering, leaving them to dieback in autumn.

  • Flowers August to September
  • Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK
  • Grows up to 1.5m tall by 50cm wide
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered site
Rose-petal-salad-2

Spring is here, see my post on spring pollinators:

Or check out my Pinterest board for more ideas:

spring pollinators
Spring pollinators
Pinterest
Pinterest Board


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