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I have leaves! About a month after planting a fresh crop of seed from one of my favorite small trees, Aesculus pavia , the Red Buckeye, I counted 7 new shoots.
The metal grids on top of my planters are to keep the squirrels out–of course. They are so active (make that destructive) this time of year.
Come spring, I’ll re-plant my buckeye forest into individual pots and share.
Red buckeye is a great small tree/big shrub for my wooded Wake County Garden. It’s tough, beautiful, and as you can see, easy from seed. You should grow that!
So what big success have you had from seed? Now that I’m rockin’ buckeyes, I can’t wait to try another tree.
But there are so many annuals I NEVER want to garden without.
At the top of that list:
Manaos Beauty aka Brazilian Button Flower aka Centratherum Intermedium. A perennial in it’s native country, here in Wake County NC it’s tender and needs to replanted in the spring.
Even the leaves are pretty–
And the button-like buds and flowers rock the front of the border from mid-summer to frost.
I first saw this plant at he famous Montrose Garden in Hillsborough. Fortunately I was able to find seed at my favorite source for hard to find and old fashioned annuals, The Fragrant Path. http://www.fragrantpathseeds.com/product.asp?ID=135.
Annuals like Manaos Beauty are the reason I usually have lots of flowers in the garden. What about you? What are your workhorse plants?
This morning, the pods began to split and husband Bill and I harvested 37 buckeye seeds.
That’s a record!
Using fresh seed seems to be the trick for getting buckeyes to germinate at our house.
This big bowl of buckeyes, will go in the outdoor screen box. The cold weather ahead will be good for my planting and hopefully by spring, I’ll have a little forest.
Red Buckeye is a favorite small tree, BTW. Also called Firecracker plant, it has knock-your-socks off red blooms in the spring.
Then there are the big buckeyes that hang there, so full of potential.
Do beware, though. Our dog seemed to know instinctively that buckeyes are poisonous, but children might not. Keep these are all seeds out of reach.
So what exciting things are you harvesting in this garden this month?
When the season changes, so does the pallet in my Wake County NC garden. Cooler temeperature mean deeper colors.
Red which looks too hot in summertime suddenly seems to glow.
And of all the reds, spider lily may be my favorite. I’m lucky if it blooms 2 weeks out of 52. Still, I wouldn’t be without this old southern flower that makes the path suddenly exoitic and full of color after the long hot summer.
All it asks from me is an initial investement. Plant the bulbs in an area where they won’t be disturbed and every year you’ll be delightfully surprised. The dark green leaves belong to Lenten Roses, BTW.
Popping up and not quite blending is the oxblood lily. It’s another of those plant it and forget it blubs that do well in the South. Just don’t forget where you planted them. Like spider lilies, they hate to be disturbed.
Cypress vine grows readily from seed and is great to cover a mail box. I save the seeds from this plant every year and start them indoors under lights. (BTW, our mail man says he loves it, too even though he can no longer read our address)
Finally, the beauty berries are a delight this time of year. This one is a Asian variety–but I’ve never met a beauty berry I didn’t like. They’re tough, will grow in my deicious woods, and make a great cut-back shrub for a mixed border in part sun or part shade. Do put it on your “grow that” list. And do share–what early fall colors are you enjoying in the garden?
Well, I finally did it. I pulled out my tomatoes. It is bittersweet. Whenever you rip out those summer veggies, you are saying goodbye to that season.
Before: End of the season 2013 Tomatoes
After: A couple of hours of taking out tomato plants and cages
While this year wasn’t particularly fabulous because of the massive amount of rain <I swore I would never complain about rain, but this summer was tough….a colleague had a great description of the last couple of years of NC weather: “From Drought to Drench”>, I am grateful for the vegetables I did harvest.
The seasons are changing and that means you need to change your veggies too. I call it the Great Fall Veggie Transformation — it sounds so epic, but really so simple.
Here are the 5 Steps to Transform your Summer Vegetable Garden into a Fall One:
1)Remove your summer vegetables – take your tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, eggplant and others out. I usually put this out for the city to pick up, so I don’t contaminate my compost pile.
2)Shop and pick out your fall veggies. I love fall because it makes me think of greens, autumn squash, and other grand root vegetables. I choose lots of kale, cabbage, swiss chard and threw in a few lettuces for fun. I am going to try to do broccoli and butternut squash – though I haven’t had luck in the past. But it’s a new season.
3)Collect your good planting soil, Osmocote fertilizer and a trowel and you are ready to plant. BTW-I usually do my major fertilizing in the spring, but of course your little seedlings need to eat. The slow release Osmocote does the trick– look for the pink top.
4) Plant your little plugs according to the package. I usually do it at least 6 inches apart so they have room to grow. Throw in a sprinkle of Osmocote, the plant plug and cover with good soil.
5) Water. That’s the final step. Remember transferring plants can be extremely stressful, so almost over-watering is best to help relieve the stress. Just think after you do strenuous exercise how water can be so healing.
Now, just keep up with the rainfall, watering when needed and watch it grow.
That’s it! 5 steps to the Great Fall Veggie Transformation.
Go on…get out there and get dirty!