About four inches of snow fell overnight; a reminder that Fall wanes as the holidays approach. Just thinking about a few moments of the past season.
The half on/half off leaves of our Japanese maple was a marker for yesterday. A year ago, an early Fall cold event caused the leaves to turn from green to brown and stay on the tree for months. Cycle is more complete this year.
Container plants were prominent in the yard this season. We enjoyed several pots of these sunflowers that were about 2 feet tall at maturity. Seeds were started indoors and blooms came in late June, much earlier that traditional tall sunflowers.
Ground cherries, an annual that produces fruit from direct seed planting outdoors in this region, is a small long-term commitment to achieve fruit. The gangly, tomato – like plant had a spot in the back of the herb garden.
Ripe fruit falls off the plant and the round yellow sweet is inside the husk. Some grocery stores offer these fruits in season.
Vegetable garden produced well, considering its late start in early June. Green beans and eggplant were prolific. Tomatoes ripened late but colors and tastes made the wait worthwhile; purple shoulders and yellow orange ones for example.
Search for more early fall blooming plants for this region continues. That’s when butterflies are most abundant here. Agastache are gangly in appearance but pollinators love them.
Nasturtium, direct seeded into containers in July, were ready for display in September when leaf-chewing insects were less dominant. They produced flowers up to first frost in early October. With any hold-over plants now indoors, most outdoor plants are becoming dormant on the Northern Plains.
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