Six on Saturday – Fall Colors – October 26, 2019

Every year it seems I despair of the lack of fall color. And every year it comes…just later than I expected. We were in Baltimore twice this week as I had cataract surgery on my left eye and the next day a return trip for the post-op exam. The trip to Baltimore involves highways with lots of trees and in the two weeks from the first surgery we now saw lovely fall colors. And the really great news is that I could see the brilliant colors without glasses.

My two beds at the St. Michaels Community Garden have been cleaned out and black plastic stapled over the raised bed frames to keep the weeds from germinating. I didn’t get any fall greens planted this year and it’s too late for seed germination now. I’ll start planting in March if weather permits.

My own garden is winding down. Leaves are falling and the grass is going dormant. But there are things to see.

  1. Berries on the Major Wheeler honeysuckle.

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2. An azalea bush in the foreground is beginning to show color. The Sheffield mums are in full bloom; their color is perfect with the fading rust of the sedum Autumn Joy. On the to-do list is wrapping the Jan Kirsch avocado for the winter.

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3. A crepe myrtle in the front yard is blazing.

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4. The white flowers have fallen but the Abelia shrubs are fading into autumn colors.

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5. The New England asters were pummeled by last week’s rain, but the garden in general has perked up with the moisture.

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6. A photo from this time last year. Even hosta leaves provide fall color. They are not as pretty this year because of the drought. In this photo it looks like I spread fireplace ashes in the garden and I couldn’t figure out where they came from. Not our fireplace. Then I remembered my neighbor was moving and had a large metal pail of ashes and I snagged it. They really seem to help to deter slugs.IMG_7646 (1)

That’s my Six on Saturday, photos of my garden once a week, a meme started by The Propogator, a UK gardener.  This is the link to the rules if you’d like to join in. #lovemygarden

Six on Saturday – In Every Corner – May 11, 2019

There’s something happening in every corner of my garden. The window boxes in the front have been planted and the drip irrigation placed in the boxes. The drip system in the back in my raised beds and the gardens around them has a geyser, but an oops plug should fix it. We’ve had more rain so I am still in my chicken boots walking around. The  roses are beginning to bloom.

  1. The Golden Showers rose that I planted two years ago has multiple blooms this year. I love the closeup photo.

2. The straw bale now has the baby volunteer potatoes inserted into it. There is a turn off valve before the part of the drip system that used to go into my purple wheelbarrow. I may need to tweak this as the wheelbarrow is history. But for now it’s been so wet, I don’t have that part of the irrigation system turned on.

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3. Last year the cornflowers I grew from seed last year didn’t do much. Just a couple of blooms. This year the plants are full of buds and this is the first open flower. In another week or two that part of one of my raised beds will be spectacular.

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4. A white peony… the roots given to me by a friend. I don’t know the name. This year I managed to get support around it early so the blooms didn’t end up on the ground. The azalea in the left foreground is Rosebud. If I was an artist I would try to paint one or these peonies as a watercolor. The gray tones against the cream are gorgeous.

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5. Last weekend’s rain filled the Jan Kirsch avocado. Just beyond it and in the foreground are Martha Hitchcock azaleas. My favorite. I lost three large Martha Hitchcocks in another area of the garden this winter. I think it was just too wet. These plants are in a drier area. However, this year that’s a relative term.

6. In another corner of the garden the hardy orchid, Bletilla Striata, is just coming into bloom, a compliment to the clematis Abilene. The black pot on the left has hyacinth beans planted in it. They have not germinated so I will try again. The pot is near one of the supports on which the hyacinth bean vines climb.

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That’s my Six on Saturday. There is something happening in every corner of my garden at this time of the year. This meme was started by The Propogator, a UK gardener.  This is the link to the rules if you’d like to join in.

Six on Saturday – Cold on the Cusp – November 17, 2018

It’s colder, but we still haven’t had a killing frost. A lot more rain last week so the yard is too wet for the guy who runs the big mower that will mulch and collect the leaves for me. There are a few outdoor tasks remaining but we did get the Avocado sculpture wrapped for the winter and the drip irrigation system shut down and the timers removed. The hose has been rolled and the sprayer removed. I don’t bring it inside. The water that’s left inside can freeze and expand without rupturing the hose. There are a few pots to be moved closer to the house. They will survive the winter — or not.

  1. I got a flat of yellow pansies and planted them in some pots. They’ll give me a pop of color on these drab days.

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2. The potted dwarf Alberta Spruce is on the deck ready to be wrapped in fairy lights. I leave the lights on it until spring because it’s so pretty at night. I’ve had Alberta Spruce in the garden before. Lost one to red spider mites and then planted two on the other side of the garden flanking steps leading to the deck. One succumbed to mites and the other looked healthy, but my sense of symmetry was bothered so I dug it up and gave it to Laura Ambler, my writing partner, for her garden.

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3. A month ago a sunken area in the garden was filled with bags of top soil and seeded with grass. I bought a seed mixture that was incorporated in mulched newspaper last spring because a guy in the check out line at Lowe’s told me he used it. I had it in the garage and hoped the seed was still viable and it seemed to be. After I put the mixture down it rained and rained. I thought the seed might rot, but it germinated.

 

4. I remembered to harvest seed pods from the thread leaf amsonia hubrictii this morning. Now I just have to get them into a container and label them before I forget what they are. The good news is they are now in the garage, not still in the garden. These thread leaf amsonia don’t self-seed like the other variety I had. I want more of the golden fall color.

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5.  Hairy Balls Milkweed aka Family Jewels Milkweed

A friend brought me some flowers that contained a stalk of these. I dried them out and will see if I can raise some from seed. Apparently the Monarch butterflies like them.

 

6.  We emptied out the water in the avocado sculpture, put a beach ball in it to keep the tarp raised and fastened the tarp with bungee cords.  Last we had some fall color from the small maple on the left, but nothing this year. The leaves are holding on. The random pieces of paving were thrown there and never got properly placed. A job for spring.

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That’s my six for this week, a meme started by The Propogator, a UK gardener. I learn something every week from the participating gardeners. This is the link to the rules if you’d like to join in.