Turning of the Season

Colchicum autumnale 'Pleniflorum'

Colchicum autumnale ‘Pleniflorum’

We’ve had our first killing frost right on schedule — October 25th.  However, it just barely hit the most tender plants and many others are enjoying the extended nice weather we’ve had since then.  Especially the Colchichum that I planted in the revived wildflower bed.

Cochicum autumnale 'Byzantium'

Cochicum autumnale ‘Byzantium’

I’ve been able to get in some delightful gardening outside including planting some of our bulb order in the new garden (daffodils, corydalis, erythroniums, scilla, and chionodoxa).  I also put some Chiliean crocus in the alpine bed.  It was an opportune time to do some transplanting too.  I put in a Virginia Waterleaf that I had been saving up for the last six months.

Virginia Waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginianum)

Virginia Waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginianum)

This is a very interesting looking plant just for the leaves but the pictures on the internet promise very pretty flowers as well.

I continue to be fascinated by the Oxalis which are flowering in the greenhouse right now.

A profusion of Oxalis bowiei blooms

A profusion of Oxalis bowiei blooms

I have to thank Diana Chapman of Telos Rare Bulbs for alerting me to the interesting variety in Oxalis bulbs.

Oxalis bowiei from the back

Oxalis bowiei from the back

Oxalis hirta 'Gothenburg'

Oxalis hirta ‘Gothenburg’

Oxalis hirta 'Gothenburg'

Oxalis hirta ‘Gothenburg’

 

Oxalis hirta

Oxalis hirta

Oxalis luteola 'Glauca' MV 5567

Oxalis luteola ‘Glauca’ MV 5567

Oxalis luteola 'Glauca' MV 5567

Oxalis luteola ‘Glauca’ MV 5567

I have seen aphids attacking the Oxalis, but I’ve also seen some natural protection.

rab spider waiting for visitors to the Oxalis

Crab spider waiting for visitors to the Oxalis

On a warm afternoon I also found many Ladybird Beetles trying to get into the greenhouse (it’s not hard, they just need to find the open windows).

Ladybird beetle on outside greenhouse

Ladybird beetle on outside greenhouse

There were perhaps fifty on the outside looking for a warm place to spend the winter.  I helped many of them out.  And in return they were busy in the greenhouse.

Ladybird beetle scarfing up tiny aphids in the greenhouse

Ladybird beetle scarfing up tiny aphids in the greenhouse

I’ve also noticed a Praying Mantis eggcase in the greenhouse which is a nice sign for next spring.