It seems appropriate for this Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day to give due credit to this little dwarf Daphne which has bloomed on and off in the Alpine bed since April. The flowers (like most Daphnes) are very fragrant and the plant has prospered in the Alpine bed despite my placing it in a spot between two rocks where it seemed to me most appropriate to its small size. And it’s much bigger now, though still very pleasing.
Even the Winter Daphne which I moved into the sunshine this year after torturing it in the deep shade for several years seems to be enjoying its exposure to the elements.
It’s out by the front fence in some of the poorest soil on our hillside. We shall see how it survives. The Edgeworthia, its new neighbor, has put out some fat buds so maybe it’s not as bad a location as I imagined.
Our weather has flirted with frost but we haven’t really had a hard, killing frost yet. That has let some of the hardier plants continue to flower. Here are just a few of them.
The Lantana is one of the feature plants that will tell me when it has gotten really cold, and I should take the citrus to the basement.
As we go back to the Alpine bed, another plant that has bloomed for a long time (essentially nine months) is the Erodium chrysanthum.
It’s close relative, the alpine geranium, is also fond of flowering every day.
What has been particularly surprising this fall is the Delphinium cashmerianum.
Retreating finally into the greenhouse (which will be my refuge before long) I want to share the bright red flowers of the a little Aptenia that I grew from a cutting (thank you Marianne!)
And the tiny little flowers of Polyxena ensifolia which looks much bigger on the web.
Perhaps mine will grow up some day…
Besides myriad Oxalis, there is also a pot of Cyclamen worthy of note.
These are pure white with lovely leaves.
Finally I will finish up with the first Camellia of this season. Beth picked it before I could photograph it in place, but it’s another reminder of what an extended Fall season we have had.
I awoke this morning to find that the world around me was in tears. In no way could I imagine that the U.S. could elect an ignorant charlatan to the highest office in the land. I am profoundly ashamed of the system that takes two years of campaigning at enormous expense to arrive at this terrible state of affairs. I’ll take a parliamentary system any day as a more effective representative government. I have no idea how to fix the cultural divide between those who think that knowledge is a flexible thing to be bent to one’s whims and those who respect education and the country’s historic values.
I can think of nothing more appropriate to the moment than to quote a letter from E.B. White that appears on the wonderful Letters of Note website
North Brooklin, Maine
30 March 1973
Dear Mr. Nadeau:
As long as there is one upright man, as long as there is one compassionate woman, the contagion may spread and the scene is not desolate. Hope is the thing that is left to us, in a bad time. I shall get up Sunday morning and wind the clock, as a contribution to order and steadfastness.
Sailors have an expression about the weather: they say, the weather is a great bluffer. I guess the same is true of our human society—things can look dark, then a break shows in the clouds, and all is changed, sometimes rather suddenly. It is quite obvious that the human race has made a queer mess of life on this planet. But as a people we probably harbor seeds of goodness that have lain for a long time waiting to sprout when the conditions are right. Man’s curiosity, his relentlessness, his inventiveness, his ingenuity have led him into deep trouble. We can only hope that these same traits will enable him to claw his way out.
Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope. And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day.
(Signed, ‘E. B. White’)
I am way behind on reporting on garden developments here on Ball Rd. I walked around last weekend to try to catch up with what has been happening (mostly what persists in growing despite the lack of rain hereabouts). I was quite pleased and surprised to see that the first flowers have appeared on a little delphinium that I had placed in the new Alpine bed (more about that in a future post). I grew this one from seed (obtained from the Scottish Rock Garden Club seed exchange) planted last February. As I look at the plant I’m dubious that the name is correct. The leaves are much more narrow than shown in the online pictures of D. cashmerianum.
There are a lot of species of Delphiniums so I’ll have to live with it for a while to see if I can hone in on the correct name.
It’s been so dry that I haven’t had a lot of new flowers for quite some time. I did see that the Mahonia by the front door has it’s yellow flowers showing.
The big question is whether we’ve found a spot where it will successfully survive the winter.
There are many annuals still about in the vegetable garden. I’ve shown the Tithonia many times now. But out front the Gaillardia deserves some commendation for persistence.
And there was a solitary rose in flower next to the garage. It was just about perfect with a wonderful fragrance.
I know longer remember the name, but it seems to me it had something to do with ‘blush’.
There a couple of instances of Bottle Gentians having escaped in the garden behind the garage. I’ve never been that keen on flowers that never open, but they are beginning to win me over with stubborn endurance.
And it you look closely while walking in the back yard you can see crocus blooming in the lawn.
But even as the flowers are waning during this Indian Summer, the greenhouse is abounding with the bright green growth of many bulbs. Daffodils, triteleia, tritonia, ferraria, moraea, freesia, lachenalia, and more are sending up new shoots. And the oxalis are in full bloom now. Here is a sampling. Notice how variable the leaves are from the clover-like bowieii , to the wonderfully textured melanosticta, and to the very narrow hirta.
Lastly a Cyrtanthus hybrid that has been living in the house for two weeks now.