Autumn Gathering


What a time to write about UK garden petal dyes, when the colour is all but gone from the flower beds.
At this time of year, I’m really all about the cake and less of the gardening work in this Autumn that is proving to be quite soggy - and nobody likes soggy cake!


I’ve been very lucky that some of my Dahlia’s and Chrysanthemum are clinging on just a little longer to give me some bonus bunches, and in appropriate autumnal colours too!

I found myself a little time to enjoy the process with Dexter the Dog for company.

While I know that there is often little control over the finished effect, I still love to decide to leave flowers while, to sprinkle and scatter petals abundantly and frivolously, of rip and chuck. And don’t know what leads those decisions, then unfold from my hands without conscious thought.

As long as the bundle is wrapped and tied before the baby awakes, I consider that a productive afternoon, and I can steam the bundle later when I cook dinner.

I savour and enjoy every part of the process, even the spent petals as they are shaken from my freshly dyes garment, soggy and sludgy.

if there a a pretty, translucent petal, I don’t pick it off from the fabric. It wall dry and fall eventually, but for the moment, I will let it be a part of the beauty until it decides to depart.

Charlotte Hardwick