In the garden this week — Blackbirds and Nerines
Life & Style

In the garden this week — Blackbirds and Nerines

BLACKBIRDS: The crab apples glow in the hedgerows and in local gardens varieties of Malus, Sorbus and Rowan trees are loaded with berries in various hues and tints.

Most of the rowan group exhibit some good autumn colour, but certain species excel.

One of the most popular Chinese rowans is the superb ‘Joseph Rock’ with apricot berries which are set off by leaves that gradually darken and change to a rich, tortoiseshell hue.

However, many are already littering the ground beneath their spread and greedy blackbirds have arrived to feed like gluttons on nature’s beneficence.


Always the most pragmatic of birds, the blackbirds will take all that’s available as soon as it is ready and sometimes even before that.


NERINES have almost finished flowering having begun their autumnal display as far back as the first week in September.

In my book, that’s a full eight to nine weeks of bloom, something equalled by very few plants in the garden.

Part of this grand return I attribute to the removal of the bulbs leaves during mid-July and the odd feeding with the likes of tomato food.

Lift and divide overcrowded clumps after flowering. This becomes evident when the bulbs are pushing and lifting themselves one on another from sheer numbers.

Replant mature bulbs immediately and put the smaller offsets in new quarters or give away to friends or garden club members.