As Summer Sets

While the temperatures are still in the 90’s, there was a sure sign that Fall is approaching on the nursery shelves today.

Ready or not, its time to think about Fall color and plans for spring…again!  I may still add some perennials to fill in sections that did not fare well while beefing up fall color.

Chrysanthemum is always a fall favorite,

and would compliment the Gaillardia, Coneflower, Lavender, Nepeta, Coreopsis, Rudbeckia and Salvia that should still bloom for a couple of months.

I’d like to experiment with Aster and Sneezeweed which I cannot grow in my own garden. I planting some Aster a month or so ago for an early Fall bloom. Big mistake. Fried.

The Russian Sage, meanwhile, should bloom well into the winter.

Once the heat is past, it will be time to layer in some annuals: Calendula, Iceland Poppies, Pansies and Stock are good options in our zone 8.

It’s already getting late to shop for bulbs. In our area Crocus, Hyacinth and Tulips should be chilled for six weeks of so before planting.

The list of spring bulb options is so long, it’s hard to narrow down: Anemone, Freesia, Ixia, Tritonia, Lecojum and Ranunculus would be beautiful additions as we already have waves of Daffodils and Irises.

Once it cools, but well before it gets really cold and wet, overcrowded plants will benefit from dividing. In our garden that probably means Iris, Coneflower, Yarrow and some Daylilies.

Of course the biggest projects are now staring us in the face:

We’ve begged Ina to expand her Cottage Garden and offered help with clearing and digging (what were we thinking?!)

We’re hoping that Peggy and Steve will apply their Iris growing skills to a half circle near the entrance to the garden.

Paths are planned while expanding the beds and bringing in topsoil for seeding a grassy area in the center section. And finally: the dreaded Blackberry Bramble.

Thankfully, that is best done in the dead of winter, so there is still time for procrastination on that front!

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I am a nascent gardener, rescuer, and photographer, chronicling the journey of the dogs at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary near Sacramento, CA - and the Memorial Garden we have devoted to them.

7 thoughts on “As Summer Sets”

  1. Yes the Chrysanthemums are all over the stores right now. they would make a nice addition to my sunflower garden along with a pumpkin or two. October is just around the corner. Do rabbits eat pumpkins?

      1. Too late to plant. Thought I would buy a couple and place in the garden, but want to make sure they don’t get eaten. I know goldens love cooked pumpkin, but I think I’m safe with the whole pumpkin in the garden. I never know what little surprises await me in the HB garden.

  2. I love your posts. Your skill in bringing the spirit of the Memorial Garden alive, not to mention a bird’s-eye view of its beauty, might eventually capture the eyes of someone who tries to take you away from our acre to theirs. My grandson and I gardened for four hours last Tuesday and made some headway, if not meeting all goals. The highlight was a visit by Jody at day’s end, when she came out to say hello to my three boys (two of whom began as her boys).

    1. I’ve been there. I prefer here! I grew up near Lake Champlain, NY. Tundra! Where the first snow is Halloween, and you can’t get a shovel in the ground until mid-May. Here, many of our plantings will bloom into Sept and October. Trees turn in late October/November with fall color. Then cold-season blooms take over and extend into December. We get hard frosts in January, and bulbs start poking through in late February. We’re in full gardening mode by March/April, but (if we’re lucky) you have to consider heavy rains. Jealous? We do bake in July and August if that helps!

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