Wordless Wednesday

Autumn sunset

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IAVOM-6th Anniversary

Mini arrangmentCathy, at Rambling in the Garden, is celebrating the 6th anniversary of In a Vase on Monday, a meme where gardeners showcase a weekly vase from their gardens. This week she has requested that we make a miniature (six inches or less) arrangement. It’s a good thing, as there is very little left in my garden to show after wind, rain, a dusting of snow and below freezing temperatures were what we’ve experienced in the past week.

Small flowers

Viola, Lavender, Beautyberry

I was able to scrounge a few blossoms of Heartsease (Viola tricolor), Lavender (Lavandula angustifoliaand Beautyberry (Callicarpa americana) tucked into a few pieces of Sage (Salvia officinalis).

A second vase, while not a miniature, celebrates November in my yard.fall arrangementI spied a stem of Gooseneck Loosestrife (Lysimachia clethroides) showing red/burgundy that the frost had not turned brown. To that I added a stem of ‘Husker’s Red’ Penstemon, a sprig of Winterberry (Ilex verticillata) and a Black-eyed Susan bloom (Rudbeckia hirta) filched from last week’s arrangement.

A couple of dried Hosta seed heads, backed by a stem of  evergreen Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia) finishes the arrangement.

Thanks to Cathy for hosting over 300 weeks of arrangements– whew! A very addictive meme it is! To see more, click the link above.

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Silent Sunday

Fothergilla major

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IAVOM- Encore

flower arrangementIncredibly, we made it all the way to November 1st before we had a killing frost, weeks beyond the average. I decided to comb my yard on Friday beforehand to see what flowers I could glean that had survived the light, spotty frosts we had previously. Protected by overhanging shrubs, I was surprised that I came away with four small bouquets, two of which I share here.

black-eye SusanThe blue pitcher above contains Black-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia hirta), gold Nasturtium flowers and stems (Tropaeolum majus), wild white Malva (M. moschata alba), Queen Anne’s Lace (Daucus carota), white Chrysanthemums and a few pitiful Zinnia ‘Yellow Profusion.’flower arrangementThe milk can vase above holds Beautyberry (Callicarpa dichotoma), Cigar Plant (Cuphea ignea ‘Vermillionaire’) and a vigorous late-blooming Fleabane (Erigeron annuus) tinted lavender from the cold weather.Beautyberry, fleabane, Cuphea

As my gardens faded through October, I found I missed the creativity of making multiple flower arrangements every week from my garden, so this was an unexpected treat.

fall flower arrangement

fall in a vase

Earlier in the week, I realized that I had never made one of my large arrangements the whole summer long. So I set off walking the trails by the river cutting berries from invasive Asian bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus) and European privet (Ligustrum vulgare), and seed heads of Japanese Knotweed (Fallopia japonica). They thrive down by the river and sadly, are slowly taking over, so a few less seeds self-sowing around works for me. From the woods, I added foliage of red oak (Quercus rubra) and American Beech (Fagus grandifolia). Passing through the garden, I cut Miscanthus seed heads, Christmas fern (Polystichum acrostichoides) and several branches of white Chrysanthemums.

Hope you enjoyed my encore of  In A Vase on Monday, hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. Definitely the last of the seasons fresh flowers, if I get the creative urge from now on it will have to be twigs, berries and seed heads, so stay tuned, I might not be finished yet.

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Silent Sunday

autumn dried flowers

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Autumn Garden

Purple Smoke Tree Cotinus coggygria 'Royal Purple'

Purple Smoke Tree (Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’) fall color

This has been a wonderful year for fall color in my neck of the woods. Conditions favoring such all came together weatherwise– from a cool, wet spring to sufficient rain throughout the summer, ending with a cool, dry September. Perfect!

fall in the shade garden

shade garden in fall

While my flower beds are done for the year, and maple trees’ blaze of color is no more, there is still plenty of color as perennials fade and small shrubs flash color all over the yard. Above is my front shade garden displaying a mosaic of color. A Cotinus, which I planted in August to replace a beloved Acer I lost to canker, has been a delightful surprise with rich shades of blazing color. Some closeups:

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Further along the hedge to the right, clockwise, are a mound of yellowing Weigela, brilliant red Japanese maple (Acer palmatum no ID plant sale seedling), a Christmasy (no ID) Rhododendron with older leaves that turn red behind the newer evergreen ones, and a burgundy deciduous Azalea.

Weigela, Acer, Azalea

Weigela, Acer, Azalea fall color

Along the front walkway, the stonewalls topped with my ‘bonus’ pumpkins, barely contain the yellow-green, red-edged Lysimachia and scarlet Geranium leaves:

Elsewhere in the yard, Korean Spicebush and Doublefile Viburnums, Oakleaf Hydrangea (H. quercifolia) blaze in burgundy and scarlet. Lacecap hydrangea (H. macrophylla) are yellow lanterns topped in rosy-purple. Fothergilla and Aronia are multi-hued showstoppers.

img_6275In the surrounding forested hills, russet Red Oaks (Quercus rubrum), butterscotch-colored Beech (Fagus grandifolia) and gold Poplars (Populus grandidentata) contrast with deep evergreen pines (Pinus strobus). It is a ephemeral show that I take in greedily, knowing it will soon to fade to the monotones of winter. For now, I’m grateful for its abundant beauty.

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Silent Sunday

Autumn Barn

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