November: Dark Days and Erratic Weather

We’ve had snow, icy fog with heavy frost, rain, and plenty of gloom. Dark days, yes, but I am not going to talk about the thick, dark clouds—they  have no redeeming characteristics.


We have awoken to snow-covered plants and cars several times already. This is my kind of snow: pretty, and not sticking much to any pavement that would require shoveling.

Autumn clematis seed clusters seem built to hold snow caps. The seeds are furry. Those green tendrils are not attaching them to the plant—they are at the other end, and will fluff out into feathery plumes that probably help keep the seeds aloft. Photographed on November 18, 2018.

Continue reading “November: Dark Days and Erratic Weather”

The Fig Is Put to Bed

I had a lot of work done on the exterior of the house this spring and summer by some very tidy people—one of my rather ratty tomato cages got tossed with some other debris. I had been daisy-chaining tomato cages together to contain the fig over the winter.

A cold snap was predicted, so I had to do something. Burlap and bamboo stakes seem affordable.

The fig tree has outgrown its usual afghan, so it was wrapped with floating row cover. Six six-foot bamboos stakes were driven into the ground and draped with burlap, which is fastened with twist ties. The wrapped tree shows through the burlap. The gap is being filled with the leaves I am raking up. Photographed on November 17, 2018.

This fig pen was able to absorb all the leaves that had fallen in the yard that were not already destined to cover a perennial bed. Continue reading “The Fig Is Put to Bed”

Fall Color, Finally

Photograph of purply-brown oakleaf hydrangea with dried flowers on it, and rather orangy serviceberry branches overlapping in front.
Our biggest color splash this fall is the purple oakleaf hydrangea, center. To the right, the serviceberry is more orange than its usual scarlet, and once again it colored up so late that it missed the New England aster bloom. The brown at the base of the oakleaf hydrangea is geranium, with lady’s mantle still untouched by frost underneath that.

My yard is recovering from both painters and “abnormally dry” conditions. A drought by any other name….is still abnormally dry. Fall has been relatively unexciting, colorwise, but the colors are brightening, finally.

The painters did a beautiful job on the house, and not too much damage to the plants surrounding the house. The plants should be fine by spring; they have endured both roofers and painters this year. Perhaps it is a good thing that a lot of plants went dormant by early August.