Archive for October, 2011

October wrap up

Just as in September, October has been a waiting game due to lots of rain: 5.5 inches thru today.  So far I’ve managed to clean and stow all of the garden decorations and have cut back about two-thirds of the perennials needing it. I’ve either taken cuttings or repotted the plants in the containers and already know that some will not survive til spring. (Oh well, nothing ventured).

I’ve not pulled the last of the swiss chard because the last stalks and leaves are so darn pretty.  Maybe next year we’ll actually eat some. Meanwhile I’m still fiddling around with the scarlet runner beans. I’ve harvested the last of the mature pods and they are drying out in the 3 season room.

scarlet runners with cooked kidney and black beans

drying scarlet runners

I’m trying to overwinter the Lysimachia I used in one the container pots.  This particular variety is said to be hardy to -15 degrees F. I put it near the furnace water-vaper exhaust.

Lysimachia 'Walkabout Sunset'

The lone holdout in a container is the Brugmansia below.  I can’t remember the variety I got in 2010 and over wintered for this year. They are always late to bloom here in western New York and true to form here’s the finale. I’ll take cuttings again but not ask Ken to lug the entire monster into the basement.

Brugmansia in October

Finally as I emptied the containers I brushed off, scraped and sanded the garden bench/planter box and repainted it.  I’m always freaked by the beauty and boldness of the periwinkle blue garden ‘stuff’ seen in the catalogs; so I got a couple of samples of paint that I thought were pretty close to periwinkle and proceeded to paint.  What do you think?

repainted garden bench

I like it so much that I’m searching around for more to paint.  Ken thinks shutters. I don’t know, it might be overkill.


Remains of the garden

Ok, ok, ok, OK already!  It’s been awhile since I posted on this blog. Truthfully I was discouraged by the WEATHER this gardening season.  First the barrage of water.  OMG. I planted peas at just the right moment and then depended on the WEATHER to continue the water so those peas would germinate and bloom and set peas…….. and right.. it didn’t happen.  Not a pea….  Then the rain held off and the summer seeds went in and the rain held offffffff…… and the entire garden suffered even tho I watered religiously thru July and August.    The fact that our TREE started losing its leaves in August did me in.  That and the reality of not being in any kind of shape to tend a garden shaken by heat and lack of water.  Major bummer.  But now its October and there has been a major reprieve for this gardener and my mini, mini estate.

The tomatoes are long gone and notes made as to what plan to proceed with next season.

A major change is the removal of the raised Iris bed.  They have been lovely BUT taking up major real estate.  Next year that bed will be the new tomato home;  then there will be room for more cukes and maybe space for onions. It turned out to be a good idea to put in the 2 smaller raised beds and the 2 bottomless pond circles for tomatoes and herbs.

In retrospect the real challenge was the weed disaster in the pie garden. The weeds within the raised beds weren’t the problem; it was the unending scourge of low matting weeds in between the raised beds. They are still there: sending out their roots, flowering and producing seeds and then seedlings-on and on and on. I need a plan to keep this problem at bay. No matter what goes into the beds all the ‘dead’ space is almost a deal breaker——-wha….wha….wha.But here are high points and saving graces and why I’m plotting and planning for next year.

scarlet runner beans drying

September Meal

The 2nd season for this cutting from the club

Parsley setting seed

Late Thai basil

swiss chard

Dahlias are still going

The front bed in Sept


A thankful shout out to Carol at May Dreams Gardens the hostess of garden bloggers bloom day.  Can you believe it’s already the middle of October.