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October 2005

How can you tell fall is here?

This is Hosta 'Fortunei Hyacinthina' and they have been fading for a couple of weeks now. Thought it was about time to commit them to posterity by taking a few pictures. The past couple of weekends have been spent cleaning up the garden beds in the back. Lots of things are dieing back and it's time to get the spring bulbs in the ground.

'Hyacinthina' is one of the first to break ground in the spring and you would more or less expect it to be one of the earlier ones to go into senescence at season's end.

Just because fall is in the air that doesn't stop a few Hostas from still flowering. Like this 'Guacamole' here. It was a root that was planted rather late and you would therefor expect it to flower late as well.

With the changing seasons we do get to see a few more clouds and with that comes the potential for some wonderful sunset vistas on Garry Point, just a hop, skip and a jump from where we live.

And of course before too long we'll also start seeing fog and heavy morning dew again, something else photogenic.

It's October 8th now, and there's plenty of evidence in the Hosta planter that fall has arrived. Some are holding up better than others, as you can see. It's not surprising that the ones to show their points first in the spring, are the first ones to start fading in the fall.

Fall of course is the ideal time of year to thin and transplant perennials. We have dug up some Hostas and moved them about to more suitable locations and we have taken the spade to one of our Peony 'Bowl of Beauty' roots and divided it with an eye towards the spring plant sale, which is a long ways off yet, but last spring we could have sold a few as we were fortunate enough to have them in bloom at the time of the plant sales we held.

Fall is also the time to plant spring flowering bulbs and we'd bought another 250 or so assorted Narcissi and Dutch Iris, but they have proven to be a few too many for the beds, so a goodly number were planted in 5 gallon pots and some of those will likely end up in the spring plant sale as well; if they're in bloom that is.

The miniature Fuchsia (quite probably Fuchsia thymifolia) we first showed you in September is still going strong. A bit of time-release fertilizer and it just took off, well enough to not give a second thought to doing a minor prune and take the cuttings and root them and those look like they haven't skipped a beat. And like it's bigger brothers we have, it continues to flower, just not quite as profusely.

I took a quick peek at the main plant the October 23rd weekend and I could see new flower buds developing again, plus it continues to fill out. It's actually quite amazing how much it has grown again since we pruned it 2 weeks ago.

The last Saturday of October was just a great day for yard and garden work. We took advantage of it to give our main Wysteria a good pruning and did the same with one of the Honeysuckles. It was actually quite amazing to see all the new shoots developing on the Honeysuckle already when I was up there pruning.

You may recall mention of a new variegated Fuchsia we purchased back in August, well, here it is, Fuchsia magellanica gracilis variegata seems to thrive on this cooler wet weather -just like the miniature one above- and even though it's quite late in the season, I thought I'd take a few cuttings to root out.

The planter box we used for most of our smaller Hosta transplants this year is starting to look pretty bare. Not long after this picture was taken the mini Fuchsia cuttings you see on the edge were dug in for better frost protection, and all the Hosta foliage was cleaned out.

Talking about Hostas, as is evident in the picture above, most of them have settled down for their winter rest. Yet, a few still manage to make a half decent showing, such as this 'June' you see here. Though I don't have any pictures of it, the other one still keeping itself quite presentable is 'So Sweet'. About the only thing I have noticed with this 'June' is the variegation is becoming less distinct.

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