Rejoice in the Changes

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The days are ever changing. As the calendar turns to the final four, the garden shows its continuing metamorphosis more vividly. The Japanese anemone, Anemone hupehensis is beginning to flower. Soon the grass seen the in background of the above photo will be blooming with a wash of pink fluff, pink muhly grass aka Muhlenbergia capillaris, read all about it here. It is coming.

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The plantings in and around the raised Dahlia Box include the floral soldiers Oenothera biennis, a story about it can be seen by clicking here, and assorted Cuphea ssp. which will continue to cater to the hummingbirds and pollinators until knocked down and out by the first frost.

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The signs of change abound, seasonal changes that cannot be denied. The once white and pristine poufs of peegee Hydrangea, H. paniculata ‘Grandiflora’ are turning shades of green and pink. This shrub is trained to grow as a standard, supported by a stout metal post with the lower limbs removed. On the left, the native dogwood, Cornus florida leaves are turning burgundy.

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The spider webs are larger than ever this year and early morning finds the thread spinner sitting calmly in the middle of its design. Waiting…

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The view from under the arbor, a good place to sit in the shade and watch the garden gyrations, shows a volunteer pumpkin sitting on the far end, supported for now by a cross beam. Hanging baskets of succulents, the only plants that can survive the hot, cold, wet, dry conditions and year-round neglect provide privacy for a peeping voyeur of the garden goings on.

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The two blue chairs, read a post about them here, are more out in the open. They are the perfect seating spot to enjoy the hummers feasting around the Dahlia Box and beyond. There is an architectural wonder plant newly added to the box this year. Planted as a deterrant to the scoundrel voles that have invaded and threated the existence of my beloved Dahlias, the castor bean plants, Ricinis communis have grown tall and prospered.

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The size of the castor beans was not forseen when the small seedlings from the now closed Mouse Creek Nursery were planted at the back of the box at each end. Perhaps seeds can be saved and sown where a large groundhog is wreaking havoc in the sweet potato bed.

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The tallest Dahlias that form the back row, D. ‘Bishop of Llandaff’, D. ‘Bishop’s Children’ seed grown and D. ‘Atropurpurea’ are dwarfed by the giant protectors. This view taken from the garage deck gives perspective to the blue chairs, arbor and Dahlia Box placement.

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Even as signs of fading and decay have begun, there are still many days of glorious garden extravaganzas yet to come. It is a mixture of the two, and when the sun shines still hotly, the imminent arrival of fall can be forgotten about.

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Annuals such as the bat face Cuphea llavea continue to provide sustenance and succor to hummingbirds as well as the tiniest pollinators. See the little one in the upper left quadrant of the image?

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There are blowsy blooms galore along with the rich foliage redolent of summer regaling us still. But the changes are undeniable and I rejoice in them. Onward.

Frances

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10 Responses to Rejoice in the Changes

  1. Cindy, MCOK says:

    The gardens are gorgeous, as always. I will rejoice in the changes when they make it here. Oh, how I will rejoice!

    Thanks Cindy. May your changes come sooner rather than later. Or at least some rain!
    Frances

  2. I just posted about my celebrating the change in seasons and even created a meme to have others join in the seasonal change…your garden is looking lovely as ever.

    Hi Donna, thanks for stopping by. I do love the changes of summer to fall best, it is the most dramatic. Summer is still well upon us, the changes here are subtle and fall takes a long time to arrive, sometimes into December but different each year.
    Frances

  3. Helen Johnstone says:

    Your slope is steeper than mine! I have castor oil plants this year and they are about to flower, they are treated as annuals here in the Uk so you should be able to get some for next year from the seedheads

    Hi Helen, thanks for stopping by. Oh yes, my slope is indeed steeper, since I have seen yours and can compare. But you still have an impressive sloping garden! The castor beans are annual here, I think, but seeds will be saved because I am hooked on these giants, even the spiky seedpods are so beautiful and the leaves look perfect for cement casting.
    xoxoxo
    Frances

  4. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    Lovely views to begin September.

    Hi Lisa, thanks. I can’t believe it is already September, and say that every month! HA
    Frances

  5. Your early fall (or late summer?) garden looks good, Frances! I noticed that there are more spiders in my garden than ever. It’s very interesting to watch them through the camera lenses: you can see a pattern on their bodies, hairy legs, etc. – the things which are not visible to the unarmed eye. I was glad to see the name of the plant I have in the container, Cuphea llavea. I didn’t know its name but, I thought it had a face!
    I love your castor bean. I never planted it because its poison. I think I can do it now since my boys are teenagers already and know what they can and can’t touch in the garden.
    Thank you and have a great September!

    Hi Tatyana, thanks for stopping by. It is late summer here, still quite warm and will be for about three more months although the leaves will start changing colors soon with the shortening of daylight hours. The little bat face is so cute, isn’t it? I am glad to hear you are growing it, too. Many, many garden plants are poisonous to humans, more than are commonly known to be, but castor bean is more famous. I hope the ground hog gives it a try! Happy September to you!
    Frances

  6. Norma says:

    As usual, I’m quite envious of your beautiful gardens! I particularly like the castor bean plant. I dearly LOVE those things! Tatyana, I have several plants, including the castor bean, that are poisonious and I’ve never seen a pet or child (I watch the children carefully) try to eat any poisonious plants in my gardens. Frances, hopefully the Groundhogs won’t want to be around your castor beans . . .

    Hi Norma, thanks for sharing here and your support! Many plants that are commonly grown are poisonous if eaten by humans, but the castor plant is in the news as ricin of late. It is a gorgeous annual and I will be growing it again if I can gather the seeds. I like these with the reddish leaves and seedpods and they are giants. I hope to scatter seeds where the groundhog comes across into our property. We shall see if that does the trick.
    Frances

  7. Good for you, embracing the summer to fall transition! I admit, I always have trouble with it, every year. I imagine I will until I leave this earth. Perhaps it’s because my birthday comes at the end of summer, so it’s a bittersweet time, personally. But … once autumn is in full swing, I do embrace it! Your writing and your garden are truly inspiring. Thank you, Frances.

    Hi Beth, thanks for sharing here. The change from summer to fall and beyond can be sad for some, but I have never felt that way. The promise of spring keeps the excitement alive. I have lived in places where there is no seasonal change and did not ever get used to it.
    Frances

  8. commonweeder says:

    I look at all the changes in my garden and am making of list of necessary changes I have to work on. Dividing! Removing. Rethinking.

    Hi Pat, thanks for sharing here. Lists are a good way to handle the projects that need doing!
    Frances

  9. Marie Brown says:

    Dear Frances, I was away for 2 weeks and not just the season, but your website has changed. I miss the way the black background made everything easier to focus on. The colors stood out like jewels, and the writing was much more vivid and easier to read. Everything went deep into the viewer’s brain in a very profound way. I miss the cedar waxwings too! For solace, I went to look at the folder where I have saved your posts over the last 2 years because I love them so much, and they too had been transformed! Is this irreversible?

    Hi Marie, thanks for writing. The change to the blog theme was an accidental click on a button. But I made the executive decision to stop paying extra for the customization which will expire on September 16. There is still some custom happening that I am not smart enough to undo with this particular theme so I am waiting until that date to try some new looks. Yours has been the only comment, here and on facebook wishing for the dark background. I agree with you, it made the photos stand out and I liked the colors of the font, too. Stay tuned, it will look different shortly, maybe for the better, or maybe not to your liking. I do appreciate your telling me how you feel. I still have the waxwing photo and may incorporate it somehow in the new look.
    Frances

  10. commonweeder says:

    Knowing how particular you are about design, I assumed the change was a long and thought out decision, but for me it is a happy accident. The black background was very handsome, but for reading, and you have substantial and delightful text in your post, I prefer the pale background.

    Thank you, Pat, for your support. I did not realize that the dark background made the text difficult to read. I had made the font simple and larger to help with that. Next week the custom design expires and I will be starting over. I will keep the pale background to help those who want to read the text.
    Frances

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