Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Photo of the Month - October 2013

It's a bit late, but better late than never.

I couldn't decide on which photo. So here are both. Two late bloomers left in my gardens.

Eupatorium rugosum "Chocolate"

Geranium Maverick Salmon

Monday, October 28, 2013

Overwintering Dusty Miller - Senecio cineraria

Here in zone 5a-6b, by fluke this Dusty Miller (Senecio cineraria) over-wintered last year. This time, I prefer to make sure it happens again.

The main reason I believe it overwintered last year was because of the snow coverage we had and the fact that there was a good layer of leaf matter that was never removed. This year it has the added benefit of deep roots and companion plants (coleus) which will be left to die back to the ground. Acting as an insulation barrier.
Both the fern leaf cultivars ('Silverdust')...
...and broad leaf ('New Look') cultivars flower:

Yet, here in Ontario, they don't flower their first season. Only when they develop...

...woody stems (the second year woody growth).

Add lots of leafy matter. Water regularly. Don't let it dry out. Up till heavy frosts. Heap with snow overwinter. Avoid salt.  Next year watch to see new life emerges from the woody stems and trim back to a tidy shape.


Monday, October 14, 2013

A Grateful Gardener

Even though the gardening season is coming to an end; in reflection of this Thanks Giving season, there are plenty of things a gardener should be grateful for this time of year.

1. Critters and beneficial insects that help break down litter and organic matter for great compost come spring.

2. Leafy matter, filled with nutrient rich materials - receiving it for FREE! With a little effort, we can reclaim it for beneficial use in the garden!

3. Late season flowering. Reminds me of abundant life - even in harsh conditions!

4. Fruit of Harvest: Many colours, textures, foods for us and wildlife - not to mention winter interest.

5. Colourful Fall Foliage. Just when you think the plant has given its all... A display of fall colour finishes up the growing season with a spectacular show.

Autumn Chrysanthemum Show at Centennial Greenhouse

What are you thankful for?  Wishing everyone a blessed Thanks Giving season! xo

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