cotoneaster

autumn crocus, fall crocus

Summer into Fall

Here are some photos from my garden taken from mid-September to early October. Asters start blooming here in early September and continue through October.

Asters "Pink Cloud" and "Monch" with last few Rose Campion and Linaria flowers

Asters “Pink Cloud” and “Monch” with last flowers of Linaria purpurea and Lychnis coronaria

 

Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, blue leadword, plumbago

Blue leadwort, aka Ceratostigma plumbaginoides or Plumbago

 

Hosta plantaginea flowers and foliage

Hosta plantaginea in bloom. The flowers smell like jasmine.

 

Thalictrum foliage turning yellow

Thalictrum foliage and fallen maple leaves

 

Stipa gigantea in fall

Ornamental grass Stipa gigantea in the front garden

 

Rosa rugosa foliage and hips with cotoneaster foliage and aster "Pink Cloud" in background

Rosa rugosa foliage and hips with Cotoneaster, and aster “Pink Cloud” in the background

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Into Winter

November departs and winter approaches…

Front garden late November

Goodbye, November!

Persicaria foliage with garlic chives seed heads

Brown foliage of Persicaria with starry seedheads of garlic chives.

Cotoneaster with berries December

Cotoneaster bush full of berries.

Yellow chrysanthemum and Cineraria foliage

Chrysanthemums and Cineraria foliage.

Euphorbia and fallen seed head of Allium christophii in front garden

Euphorbia and fallen seedhead of Allium christophii (plus all kinds of other foliage, fallen leaves, etc.)

Sunset December 9, 2017

Winter-ish sunset.

Christmas lights on house

Lights in the darkness.

Sawdust In My Eyes

Pruning time again. This year I have a Master Pruning Plan. In the front garden: magnolia, barberry, cotoneaster, photinia, snowberry, Oregon grape. Those last two are the most challenging, being ferocious suckerers. It’s not so much a matter of pruning as of deciding how much to cut down and dig up.

I’ve already done the easier ones, if one can describe as “easy” sawing a 2-inch thick magnolia limb at an awkward angle with sawdust blowing into one’s eyes, or balancing on one leg while zubbing away at an old barberry trunk, with spines poking into one’s scalp. And who would have guessed that barberry wood — and therefore its sawdust — is bright yellow?

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Pruning saw blade with barberry sawdust

The cotoneaster received the harshest treatment. It had grown amazingly the past decade or so, until it was obscuring a good deal of the house, including the number. I removed two major stems (2 inches diameter) that had lots of branches shooting off at weird angles, entangled with several seasons’ worth of clematis “Polish Spirit.” This is one of the C. viticella cultivars, reputed to be tough and vigorous, best managed by cutting down every year. I used to cut mine quite high, so as to encourage growth through the cotoneaster, and the last couple of years I didn’t cut it down at all. The lowest parts of the stems (a huge mass of them) were half an inch in diameter. I whacked the whole works back to less than a foot from the ground. Really hoping that “tough and vigorous” description is true, and new shoots will emerge in spring.

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Old Clematis stems

There is still a lot to do — shaping a tall Rosa glauca that had been bullied by the cotoneaster into an unbecoming lean, and, of course, doing battle with the snowberry and Oregon grape. Then there’s the back garden — trimming overgrown hollies and getting dead wood out from under the vigorous new canes of a huge climbing rose. Must acquire Kevlar suit.

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Post-pruning scene — stonework visible again!