The beginning of fall usually saddens me, but not this year, I don't know why, for some reason even the cold rain, the wispy fog and the chilly mornings feel soft, like an embrace. The garden doesn't look sad either, it doesn't don the scraggly, despair driven appearance that usually accompanies the end of summer, it rather looks mature, self reliant, a landscape that endures.
The bright marigolds become the fall garden and provide a pleasant contrast to the sky blue of the morning glory. It was surprisingly cold today, I got chills as I took these pictures. Almost time to plant spring bulbs.
I've planted a lot of perennials in the past few years, most of which the garden itself provided, and because they emerged from if its soil, they didn't have to adjust to it, I can almost feel them thrive. They found a balance among themselves, establishing their spreads, their hierarchy, their symbiotic relationships, and look like they've been there together forever.
A few sedum clumps that I started from tiny voluneer seedlings grew gigantic and stand above the landscape, fully ripe, turning quickly from burnt sienna to dark chocolate.
It's almost time for pumpkins and colorful foliage, warm fuzzy sweaters and hot cups of cocoa in front of the fire, and the aroma of root vegetable broth wafting through the kitchen.
There is enchantment in the air at the beginning of the cold season and I relish this unassuming time when everything seems so quiet and still, but when miraculous transformations happen under the stark surface of the soil, the kind that bring forth life's abundance in spring.
I honestly can't warm up to this plant; I appreciate its warm and golden chenille panaches at the beginning of fall but loathe its unbelievably depressing wet hay appearance in spring. It looks pretty for exactly three days, right before the velvety seed heads open, and then it turns into fluff in the wind and oddly sticks out of the snow, purportedly to provide winter interest in the garden for the next six months.
I had quite a few of these in the garden, but the more compact ones, which tend to be short lived, died down over the years and left only a couple of tall clumps to welcome the fall.
I don't get grasses, I'm more of a berry and flower person myself. They're ok, I guess, if you ignore the fact that, much like the cartoon platypus, they don't do much. Their bulky clumps occupy a lot of space, at the front of the border no less in my specific instance, a location better suited for something well behaved, with pretty fragrant blossoms.
Instead of those I got plantzilla here, seven foot tall, choking anything at its feet and making a horrid mess for me to clean up in spring. Fortunately the neighboring garden phlox can stand its ground, as it has for at least a couple of decades. The latter has both flowers and fragrance, and is, of course, purple.
But I don't want to be negative about the fluff in the wind, there is a season for everything under the sun, and now it's its time to make hay, quite literally.