The flat red seeds have all gone leaving empty pods curling like strange little sculptures by the pond.
The fading light danced on the water behind the burnt-orange papery pods.
A few splashes of colour still remain in the prairie planting. Two black cats joined me as I wandered and had a close look at some of the fluffy seed heads. It was a bit too dark to get decent close up photos.
How far round does this cat's head go?
Some of the seed heads are dark (almost navy blue) and crispy - one seed hangs like a little star. I liked the contrast of the inky blue seed heads against an orange fallen leaf.
The gardener had cut back some of the overhanging stems making it easier to follow the paths among the flower beds.
Is this the last look at the banana flower - I wonder every time I go there now. It reminds me of a Russian Doll or Billy and his barrels (a vintage stacking toy). Each time a pair of petals open, the remaining "bud" in the centre gets smaller and smaller. I wish I could see what is in the very middle but I'm pretty sure that the plant will be cut down and wrapped with its winter protection before that happens.
Under the banana tree a shrub is producing new growth. The pattern on the leaves reminded me of the stains on leather boots after walking in salty slush after the snow.
It's a great pattern - with a red central vein running down the middle.
The new growth floats above the rest of the shrub on long stems. The leaves look red from the underside and contrast with the older purple-tinged green leaves below.
Bare trees - only a few days ago there were quite a few leaves left.
Leaf covered ground in the woods.
A favourite acer - the top is bare but a few lower branches are still hanging on to their leaves.
There are buds on the rhododendrons.
One of several trees with very big leaves - the backs feel a bit like suede.
Big leaves on the ground under the tree and I think the almost bare shrub is an azalea.
The light green tiny leafed acer with just a few leaves still dotted around on a lower branch.
A few days ago there were so many more leaves on these trees.
The red acer really stands out - it seems to be holding on to more leaves for longer than most of the others.
The fading light caught these leaves and their parallel arching stems - and then I noticed the vicious thorns.
Not long ago this was a thick green arch - now it's one sided as the plant on the left (possibly a magnolia) has shed its leaves.
Just around the corner an orange acer stands out against the green shrub underneath.
Some of its leaves are dry and crinkled and over-ready to drop.
The big beech tree is almost bare.
Orange leafy reflections in the pond.
The big gunnera leaves are low to the ground. I couldn't tell if they had been cut or if they had just crumpled and fallen there.
Thank you for joining me on this little journey.