Wednesday, October 15, 2014

When We Got Back

When we returned from a week in Kentucky, it was a delight to see that the sourwood had turned bright red.

It's not a deep, rich red, it is always more cerise colored, almost a pinky red, but very spectacular.

Compared to the rusty doublefile viburnum at the back, it is bright on an overcast day. The soft pink Sheffield mums, just opening, tone it down a bit.

When the sun comes out, the leaves of the sourwood take on a richer color against the blue fall sky.

When we got back, I spent some time cleaning up the geraniums. I had to cut them all to the ground, they had totally gone by and were a brown tangled mess.

I added 5 bags of pea gravel to the dry creek bed to refresh it. I also opened up the end of the creek bed a little wider by moving stones around and adding pea gravel. Hands and knees work, moving rocks around.

Bulbs arrived in the mail during our trip. I have a lot to plant: a hundred daffodils, lots of drumstick alliums, some globe alliums and a lot of ornithogalums. More hands and knees work to come.

When we returned the Raydon's Favorite aromatic asters were in full bloom. Wow.

I divided these asters this spring and now there are several around the gardens, but this original stand  is amazing. I divided them, I trimmed them back in early summer, and they are too big for this space by the gate. They are crowding the fothergilla behind, which may need to be moved.

My katsura tree turned orange while we were away, but there is no autumn scent. Yet. When I walked around the corner at Becky's, her katsura delighted me with the classic burnt sugar smell -- loved it! The leaves on her tree were mostly down. I may have to wait for mine to drop leaves in order to smell the cotton candy scent.

The bottlebrush buckeyes just started to turn yellow the week we were gone.

The clethra did too, although not all of them. They had a stressful dry summer, and that has affected the fall color.

And the long row of yellowroot on the berm just began showing some copper tones. It will get much richer soon.

Out on the back hill, the little persimmon is fiery yellow orange, and the early sassafras  -- the odd one that is tiered and small -- is tangerine, while the other sassafras trees are still green. Blueberries are all hot red now.

Oh, and little white autumn crocuses popped up along the front walk and opened.

We were away only a week, but transformations occurred in that short time.

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