Friday, September 24, 2010

Around The Garden

I can't believe another week has gone by.  I am noticing many changes in our weather even though it has been very warm.  The leaves are whirling with many already on the ground, my faux pumpkin blew down the alley (not heavy like a real one) forecasting a changing temperature over the next few days.  Our highs are predicted to be in the sixtys rather than eighties.

The Sweet Autumn Clematis is lovely on the pergola and has not even fully opened yet.  The wind has blown many of the petals all over the patio.  I watch this grow over the summer with not a bloom on it, it shades the patio, and when it blooms it is well worth the wait.  I am going to cut it down in the fall this year just to get all of this off the pergola.  We'll see if it survives, have cut other type 3's down in the fall and they have been fine.

With the first frost the coleus will be gone.  Coleus has been one of my best performers this year becoming  wilted with the high heat but always bouncing back with a little water.

Inky Fingers intertwined with Bronze Sweet Potato Vine amongst the boxwoods, always does well in this environment.

This is a section of the alley garden that shows most of the plants growing there, just repeating as you travel the approximately thirty foot length. 

This is Agastache Blue Fortune, very fragrant and usually covered with bees.  It is not a problem in the alley but I would not recommend it for anywhere where you pass by often.  Next to it is Sedum Autumn Fire, supposedly a replacement plant for Autumn Joy.  However, it's color is not as vibrant, flower heads not as big, but it does not flop and stands through the winter.

Perilla is a wonderful plant to fill in the border.  It is an annual in my area and related to the coleus.  It can get to be about four feet high and has a stronger stem and leaf structure than coleus.

Diamond Frost Euphorbia pairs very well with roses and allysum.  It is fairly cold hardy but will succumb to frost.  It has been recommended to plant with pointsettas but you will have to pot it up and bring it inside if you are in an early frost area.

After Becky Shasta was done blooming and cut down the Plumbago took over and I did add some marigolds.  I am redoing this garden, less Beckys and more phlox and daylilies.

Purple Dome Aster is just beginning to bloom.  The rabbits really did a job on this in the spring and I thought it would never bounce back.  It has really filled out because the rabbit pruning.

I have already cut many flower heads of Limelight Hydrangea and have more to cut over the weekend for drying.  I will leave some to winter over and turn a light tan in the winter.

I will also be cutting some of the plums of Miscanthus Udine for indoor decorating.  They turn a beautiful pink as the weather cools.  This is not a grass that I would recommend be left standing for the winter, however, it is very difficult to cut it down when it looks so beautiful.  Last year I left it and it was a major chore to cut down when flattened by the snow.

Panicum Northwind is a great grass to leave standing over the winter.  It will turn a light tan and even with snow will pop back up when it melts.  It is usually about March when you will notice it is not as upright, but this is okay, it's almost spring.

Variegated Solomon's Seal is a plant that has held up through the seasons and the heat.  It is a fast multiplier and loves a shady or partly shady area.

There is a great deal of work to be done in the garden this time of year.  When I wait too long it is miserable trying to work outside trimming and cutting.  I am trying to keep ahead of this, knowing that if I don't pull some things out early it will be difficult to do this in a few weeks.