Everything’s gone yellow – at last


I thought it might not happen this year. There are years when the trees barely seem to change colour, then all the leaves go slightly brown and fall off. With, of course, one or two exceptions like my Acer which is always reliable (but then it has a head start, being an ‘autumn colour’ all year round).


The blueberry is always good too, and that has been a lovely red for a couple of weeks. I like the shape of it and have made the decision not to net it next summer, but race the birds to the fruit instead. I’ll lose, but I’m prepared for that; the crop is never heavy and the cage is extremely ugly. Distracted by food. Ahem, back to autumn colours.

My ginkgo, usually a blaze of clear yellow, has let me down a little,


with most of the leaves falling off like this. Even the Rosa Rugosa hedges aren’t up to standard; the winds have ripped off most of the leaves before they turned. Those that are left are good, though, and the birches have finally done their thing too.


But the leaves are coming off with great rapidity – they’ll probably be stripped bare by the weekend, especially if we add cold nights to the wind. Not enough cold nights so far, that’s the problem.

Until now I have been disappointed by the lack of autumn shades on my regular runs through to Dolgellau (I’m having intensive physiotherapy at the local hospital there). But yesterday the drive along the Mawddach Estuary was amazing, even though it took place in heavy mist and drizzle. Again, like the garden, the colours have changed suddenly, so when I had to go again today I took my camera. Interestingly, despite the broadly better weather, the colours didn’t seem quite so assertive. Perhaps the more moody atmospheric conditions yesterday made the range of colours stand out in contrast, but it’s still lovely. Plus there wasn’t any low, mizzly, drizzle, though it’s probably working on that.

Just click on an image below for a slideshow (and to escape it, just click the faint cross at top left, at least that’s where it is on my browsers)…

I don’t know about leaf-peepers in New England, but I’m happy with the more restricted palette of the Mawddach (the first time I ever saw it, years ago, I thought I’d somehow strayed into Middle Earth – not surprising; it was one of the places that influenced Tolkien). OK, the colours aren’t so astonishing as in the New England fall, but I love the subtlety. Plus you don’t get stuck in those horrific traffic jams.


17 Comments Add yours

  1. Christina says:

    That’s pretty good colour. I’d love to go to see the colour in New England but it is such a long way to go for a few leaves!!!!!! Hope you’re OK BTW, nothing serious that needs so much physio?

    1. kate says:

      It’s not bad – could do with a bit more red, perhaps, but that wouldn’t be very native-tree-ish, if you see what I mean (though there is a lovely copper beech, but it’s shed all its leaves)… Physio for stupid old neck injury, exacerbated by recent fall, but could be so much worse. I’d adapted fine and then went to an osteopath for something else who unadapted me!

  2. wellywoman says:

    A friend posted a pic of frosted bay the other day and said there was snow on the mountains near where she works in Scotland. We haven’t had as much wind here so still lots of leaves on the trees but they are only just turning colour. With only 3 weeks to December it’s almost as if we haven’t had much of an autumn this year. Beautiful images – a lovely golden glow. Hope the physio is working and isn’t too painful. OH needs to see osteopath sometimes and the workouts he gets can leave him in more pain than before he went!!!!

    1. kate says:

      We’ve had some snow on the tops up here in t’north – on Snowdon and its neighbours – but not a hint of a frost lower down yet. I’m amazed at the speed with which the colour has come on this year; it’s almost as though the trees were trying to cram it in before winter proper begins. YIKES! I’d not worked out that it was only three weeks to December, which means three weeks to big professional craft fair near here, AGH AGH AGH, better get making more stuff…

      (Work? What work?)
      (Garden? What garden?)
      PS – Injudicious visit to osteopath got me in this situation… well, made it worse. He tried to make me right, but I’d adapted to being wrong.

  3. Andy P says:

    I never net my blackberries but still get about 60% of the fruit. This year a large wasp nest nearby meant I had to harvest in a beesuit, which gives an added edge to the produce it produces.

    1. kate says:

      That bodes well for my blueberries, then… Not so sure about the bee suit!

  4. Dobby says:

    I shall have to go for a drive at the weekend. It is dark going to and from work so need my weekend outings to see what is happening!

    1. kate says:

      I hate that morning and evening darkness thing – fortunately it doesn’t last too long. Yup, the way from you to Beddgelert should be lovely!

  5. croftgarden says:

    Sigh – oh the glory of trees!

    1. kate says:

      Oh dear, I hadn’t thought! A recent visit to almost tree-free Shetland reminded me how much I love them too. I’d dearly love to move back to the far north in many ways, but the tree situation – that’s one reason why I probably never will…

  6. Pauline says:

    Such beautiful photos, trees here have suddenly started turning too, at last we are having our autumn tints, even though they are about three weeks late. Hope you soon feel better and won’t need to visit the osteopath any more, it’s no fun when the skeleton doesn’t work properly!

    1. kate says:

      They are really last this year, aren’t they? I was just about to say ‘it’s still not cold enough’ when my typing was interrupted by hail rattling on the wondows, so maybe it is.

      Thanks for the good wishes – I think we’re on the final stretch now… and thank heavens for the NHS!

  7. Cathy says:

    We are indeed blessed in most of the UK (except for those in the northern extremities like Christine of Croft Garden, above) for trees – whether it’s in gardens, the countryside or avenues in grand houses, I love them all. It was good to see your lovely photos as a slide show – very clever. Hope your visits to the osteopath/physio prove to be successful, despite the pain, and that you get done whatever you need to get done before that craft fair!

    1. kate says:

      I’ve just discovered that slideshows are easier now, and I can’t help myself – you’ve been warned, I suspect this is the first of many!

      Aren’t we blessed? I get very disappointed when the autumn colours aren’t up to much, so I’m glad they’re finally getting a move on – better late than never, indeed. And the cottage hospital car park gives a fab view of woods on the other side of the valley, so there’s a plus to everything – I’d never have spotted that view if I’d not been going. Definitely a glass half-full person, me…

  8. Lovely colour – it’s been very late around here. They are trying their best! I hope your Physio is a success and those views on the way must be incredibly uplifting.
    I can’t have trees in my garden – too many telephone lines over head.

  9. hillwards says:

    Beautiful views, they really draw you into the changing seasons. I do love Britain’s autumn tapestries of trees, even if they often don’t have quite the drama of North America.

  10. Love the slideshow, about time WP made stylish ones easier! Lovely subtle buttery yellows, I am glad you took your camera with you, I’ve been missing Autumn this year, lots of “turn brown and drop” happening, not enough colouring up. And how wonderful to have those views to enliven the trip to and from the physio, much better than struggling through traffic in a city. My acer is glowing in a corner of the garden like a mini firework display, but I think I will need to go further afield to find true Autumn colour in any quantity, not much on view the other day when we drove to Amlwch, and there aren’t trees in the middle of the Island, really. Will take a detour on the way to the butchers in search of pretty leaf colour!

    PS Hope physio soon no longer necessary.

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