October’s plant of the month is the autumn flowering crocus or Crocus speciosus. This is a small deciduous perennial which grows from a corm. Also known as ‘Naked Ladies’ it has linear leaves usually with a silvery central stripe, and goblet-shaped, sometimes fragrant flowers which appear in autumn. Crocus speciosus has silvery lilac-blue flowers in autumn, with darker veins and a white throat; leaves develop after the flowers have bloomed. It likes a sunny position in well drained, gritty, fertile soil. Plant in summer for an autumn display. Ideal for flower borders and beds, gravel and rock gardens and in containers.