susansflowers

garden ponderings


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Autumn has Definitely Arrived

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Some of these Sugar Maple leaves have been moved to cover beds in the vegetable garden for the winter.  Today’s agenda includes:  to finish moving this pile before expected rain comes tomorrow (unless I get side-tracked. . .).  You can see there are plenty more leaves to come!
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We enjoyed a long hot summer.  Grew delicious melons that rarely mature in the hills where I live – farmers really are gamblers!
Our lack of rain has been sorely felt by the trees.  On the right, above, is a dead cedar tree just next to a thriving one.  To the left is a fir tree slowly dying.  There are too many more like these.  To me, the saddest part is the quantity of very large (over 40 years old) fir trees that are dead and dying.  We will have to pay an accomplished tree faller to cut the dead ones without hurting live trees nearby.
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On a lighter note, I learned something about drying amaranth flowers.
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What was I thinking when I lay the fresh flowers in this position to dry?
As you can see, they stay in the same position after drying!
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This drying position should give flowers that will display much nicer!


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Floating Maple Leaf

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Today I looked outside my kitchen window, and saw a maple leaf floating around, but it never touched the ground.  As I watched it dancing around from side-to-side as well as up-and-down, I figured out what was going on.  It was entrancing, but I kept my cool, grabbed my camera and took a number of photos.  The leaf had to be caught on a spider web.  I couldn’t bear to free it from its tether, because I had never seen a leaf snared like this and did not want it to end.

We have run into so many spider webs when walking through the trees here.  You almost need to walk with your hands and arms in front of you moving around, or you end up with webs in your face and hair!


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Bee Balm

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Maybe because this is a newer plant for me, and these are the only flowers, but I have not seen any bees around it.  I do like the feathery petals of these flowers a lot, and the bright red sure stands out in my flower garden.  It is planted between white-flowering salvia and chamomile.  Unfortunately they do not flower in the same month as their blooms would look so striking next to each other with short white flowers under the taller red bee balm.

I understand the base of this plant should spread as it stays in one place, and I look forward to seeing that.  It will take a bit of nurturing since this flower bed is on shale and clay with redwood trees growing behind.  If you didn’t already know, the roots of redwood trees go sideways for a very long ways, and not much grows in their shadow.  I just keep adding amendments to lighten the ‘soil’ and keep raising the bed for the flowers.  Don’t know how long I can pull this off, but for now, it works.

Field of Wild Daisies

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Field of Wild Daisies

The photo was taken in the late afternoon when you can see the field is mostly shaded by tall trees. A year-round creek runs behind the oak trees in the distance.

When my son mowed the fields, I taught him to go around wild rose bushes and the wild daisies. The daisy patches have grown since we don’t mow the entire field anymore.