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Autumn Colors

The growing season is closing, but it brings coolness, gorgeous colors and the biggest plus, no mosquitos! The photo below is our garden next door.

Featured plants are the giant wild fleabane, pink muhly grass and the forsythia hedge.

In Spring 2016 we transplanted forsythia "babies" from our front yard to create this privacy hedge which provides year round interest. This is the view from the backyard.

Here's the view from the street which is a lower elevation than the backyard. I think we have reached fruition. Now there is privacy from the street and beauty for everybody.

I love the western view from my backyard now. Earlier in the season we have verbascum and zinnias in this bed. The verbena bonariensis also loves this garden. It continues to self seed.

The giant fleabane is like a small tree this year, but it supports many pollinators. Next year, I will give it a Chelsea chop to limit its growth. The Pearly Crescent butterfly is very happy in the sea of flowers.

This shouldn't be blooming now, but this determined daylily Painter Poet skipped its normal bloom time of early July and waited for October.

The dry weather has been great for the autumn color. This group of Early Amethyst beautyberry bushes look lovely, but the berry production has been meager this year.

A neighbor's ripening persimmon. When the weather continues to cool they will have more red tones.

The Moon Shadow sasanqua camellia blossoms are magical.

The bush itself is still on the spindly side. This was planted as a very tiny shrub in 2015. I'm hopeful that in two years we will have a very robust bush. In the meantime, I'll just enjoy these dreamy blossoms. I had to wait a few years for the blossoms, too.

We had our last traveler hummingbird in the middle of October. We kept the feeder out until last week. Fortunately, we still have Black and Blue sage and Salvia greggii (autumn sage) blooming in case a hungry traveler comes. It's doubtful that we will see them again until April 2023. Like clockwork our White-throated sparrows have returned. I've also seen Pine Siskins.

Looking into the garden from the back gate. The Mardi Gras abelia is still blooming. It started late this year. The main herb bed is to the right. We let it go a little wild with various mints, rosemary, thyme, sage, lavender, dill, parsley, collards, and fennel. I have never eaten the collard greens, but we enjoy the beautiful yellow flowers in Spring. I think an insect eats the leaves each year.

A view of this same garden area from the backdoor.

October 14th

The ivy on the out building (Ian's storage area and workshop) has lost many of its leaves by October 29th. It's one of the few autumn reds that we have.

The pot collection helps us extend the garden space by the herb bed.

Here's a close up of the wonderful aster/mum? that we received from neighbors, Sue and Rebecca.

Funshine abelia I have learned that abelias in general are great for our zone 7 climate. They weather our temperature extremes, drought and drenching rain when it comes.

My first sugar snap pea! I planted Sugar Daddy on Aug. 14th. The germination rate was excellent, but the vines have suffered in our heat. This one vine is by far the most vigorous of the lot. I planted a few more seeds today in the hopes that our mild weather will provide a better situation for them. I have these in a raised planter on the driveway.

More autumn color. This is my next door neighbor, Susan's front yard. The dogwood and asters are splendid. I'm waiting for more blossoms in my front yard before I take a photo. My yard receives more shade from trees across the street.

Here's a no frills (unedited) video of the giant fleabane with honey bees, a monarch and a quick visit from an unidentified butterfly. This is something to remind us of abundance when we are in the depths of winter!

A couple of garden notes about this Summer: It was dry, but no scary colorful garden spiders. Our bee balms weren't happy this year only one variety bloomed, the Wild Bergamot. It tolerated the dryness much better than the Jacob Cline and Raspberry Wine varieties. None of my dahlias made it this year. It even happened to Monty Don on BBC's Gardener's World. His lived, but the flower production was disappointing. There's always next year though!


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