Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Fall at Cloverleaf

It's been a pretty fall season - some crisp, sunny days and finally some rain. We only have trees in the back corner of our yard and along the fenceline. The maples have turned red and orangey-yellow and the witch hazel is a pretty clear yellow. Viburnum was crimson red although it's dropping leaves now. I thought the snapdragons were finally done with a heavy frost, but they thawed out and look as good as ever. the rosemarys, which over-wintered last year, are full of blue flowers. There are a couple late roses hanging on and plants in protected spots still blooming jupiter's beard, catmint, lavender, calendula and hyssop. That's a lot of enjoyment for November.

Look for your fall newsletter soon. Info on our holiday open house on Dec. 5&6, plus details on what's in the shop and green-house for the holidays, a recipe and a peek ahead to spring.

Lucy is doing great. She's a sweet, happy dog. Not the bravest dog ever. On windy days, when bags or paper blow through the yard, she runs away. So we were surprised one windy day when she picked up a plastic milk jug that had blown into the yard and ran around with it for 20 minutes. She ran from the gardens to the fence line at full speed over and over: It was a great game because we didn't have to do anything but stand there and watch her. I think she has some kind of running dog in her, because she loves to run and she is fast.

Fall garden clean-up- remove annuals when the frost gets them. Cut back herbaceous perennials after a hard freeze, although I leave seedheads, like coneflower, that the birds will enjoy. Dig out non-hardy, summer blooming bulbs. Leave woody-stemmed herbs: rosemary, thyme, lavender, santolina, sage-alone. The foliage helps protect the crown of the plant over the winter. Wait till spring to trim these back.For mulching woody-stemmed plants, use pine branches or burlap, which allow air to circulate. Don't use leaves which will mat down when wet, preventing air circulation.

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