Oct 30, 2012

Indian Summer Gardening

Indian Summer is a phrase I don't hear anymore. Is it now *politically incorrect*? My Mom always referred to these wonderful, warm fall days as Indian Summer. AND I LOVE IT! Tomorrow is forecast to break the record high at 75 degrees. Yes, I can like this...especially since we just had our first snow FIVE DAYS AGO!

Growing up I don't remember the practice of *putting the garden to bed* for the winter but it is a big practice here in my little corner of Utah County. But you know what? When I have a whole island of beautiful alyssum in my yard I just can't bear to cut it off at the ground...(my mums fall into the same category)


Can you blame me? As I've worked in the yard the last few days I am treated to wafts of its heady perfume. I will either cut it off after it freezes or, if we get too much snow, I will just deal with it in the spring when it is dried out.

Of course there are some plants I'm just not willing to do that with... calendula, lamb's ear and hostas fall into that category. If I leave them through the winter I have a nasty, mushy, pulpy mess to deal with! ICK! (This is where said plants reside)


Another of my fall projects was to do something with the darling little *Christmas tree bushes* that grow on either side of the garage. Somehow I've neglected them for too long and they were infringing on the driveway and threatening to put scratches in Elio!

I gave them a trim hoping I could make them tall and thin but the damage was already done from years of not pruning them. So... behold my lollipop bushes! The one on the right of the photo was totally caked with dried mud all down the trunk- the water drains off the roof right above it. Poor little tree.

lollipop bushes

There is a third bush on the left of the porch that needs to be shaped up as well, but I won't have to be as severe with that one.

My gardening style is usually pretty laid back so it takes quite a bit for me to get crazy and totally take something out. This corner of the house was totally taken over by an enormous bush (actually two bushes) that thought it was a tree... a very UGLY tree... and this happened IN SPITE of lots of pruning. I'm convinced that sometimes the wrong plant just ends up in the wrong place. Look how clean this corner looks now. Come spring I'm going to plant a bush call a burning bush that turns the most luscious bright red in the fall. (Clematis creeping up to my sewing room window)

ugly bush gone

Next on the list of fall chores was to edge the lawn, lower the mower to 2" and mow, clean the dead leaves, dirt, grass, and crack-weeds (Bet you didn't know that weeds have that addiction, did you?) from the gutters.

clean gutter

And what does one do with all of this green waste? Saturday I borrowed son-Kevin's truck so Harley and I could make two trips to the green-waste dump... but I could see that I wouldn't even scratch the surface in one day. Luckily for me one of my sweet neighbors has a big trailer so it is parked by the gate, on the side of the house, and I am slowly filling it up.


There is just something soul-satisfying to me about working in the yard! I not only love the results, I love the process. There is just such order in the process of clearing the flowerbeds, raking leaves, and mowing the lawn on the diagonal that makes me happy.

Is this hard work? You bet it is! Daily thank my Heavenly Father for the strong and healthy body that allows me to still engage in hard work. What a blessing.

1 comment:

Julie said...

It HAS been so beautiful in Utah County this week. You've inspired me to get out in my own yard--maybe for Halloween. :)