Thirsty Hollow

Altogether, we had about 4 1/2 inches of rain in September, mostly in little spits of .3″ with one good soaker. October  has started off with another scant .3″ and I am waiting hopefully for an autumn cycle of regular rainfall. The creek has just begun to trickle again and I can hear it faintly from the cherry bench, but the ground is still like iron.

Maples, Nyssas, dogwoods and sourwood are turning lovely muted colors – the birds have stripped the spicebush berries – and I feel like a fly stuck in amber out here in paradise while the world seems to burn all around me with war and natural disasters. Perhaps I watch too much TV and should get out in the garden more.

My current to-do list:

*Clean up last of annuals in front porch and back deck beds, lay down winter mulch.

*Finish trimming wild hairs on forsythia.

*Cut the last two old lilacs down to ground level. The first one has sprouted nicely from the base.

*Weed poison ivy from sourwood and cleft rock. Now is the season that all the random walnuts and poison ivy seedlings are popping up. Good time to walk the grounds with a sharp spade and trowel.

*Deep water this year’s new woody plantings of witch hazel Ryan’s ‘Jelena’, American Beautyberries (Callicarpa americana) and Fran Boninti’s Styrax obassia, the Asian fragrant snowbell.

The Geranium inquinans from old Monticello cuttings (a single flowered scarlet) is showing its autumn colors with the cooler night temps. Have never regretted our glazed turquoise Vietnamese pots.

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