Saturday, September 22, 2007

Fall in the Garden

Fall and Winter in the Garden

In addition to the blessing of the animals, there are many unique things going on. Surprisingly, many plants will continue blooming right up to the first frost. I've seen flowers blooming as late as Thanksgiving. Having said that the main act in the fall, is of course, the leaves.

The leaf color is really spectacular in the PSUMC garden. I like the birch the best with it's bright yellow....will miss the dogwood. The Japanese maple is also one to watch as it turns from green to red or yellow. And the street trees (ginkos) are a fabulous yellow. I remember looking out the window from Camp Friendship during the Hollyberry Fair and being struck by the beauty from the vantage point in the back. Many of the small plants have beautiful leaf color as well. The changing to the fall orange and reds is not limited to the trees. Hostas are especially remarkable.

Bulb planting is a great task in delayed gratification. It's a good one for kids as bulbs are easy to handle and easy to plant if adults dig the holes.

Raking the leaves for the compost is a great effort in recycling. All those bagged leaves can be used year long to add the needed nitrogen to the bins which are usually over filled with fresh kitchen waste, most of which is nitrogen rich. To make good compost you have to have both.

When winter comes the yew makes fabulous greens for decorating. It's also a good way to prune it and the holly. Other leaves in the gardens (and rose hips) make beautiful decorations.

Finally, it's just nice to observe the garden going to rest while we rest from gardening for awhile. Theres' a lot happening underground but at least our interaction with the garden is more reflective, less physical.


1 comment:

Nancy C. said...

Thank you Ellen -- this is a lovely reflection. Speaking of orange, I just noticed that the Mexican Sunflowers are blooming! They are behind the roses, sort of in the corner of the bed.

I wonder, does the orange of the Mexican Sunflower clash with the delicate pink of the roses? Not sure, but I'm very pleased -- I scattered some seeds back there in July, and didn't know if anything would happen. So, it's exciting to see them in bloom. I adore Mexican Sunflowers and actually, I think back there is as good a place for them as anywhere, 'cause they are pretty tall and like a lot of sun. Hopefully they'll keep putting out blooms 'til frost.

Resources (Books and such) List

  • Community Gardening Guidebook, Brooklyn Botanic Garden,
  • The End of Nature by Bill McKibben