Get out the rakes all. Yesterday was a barnburner for the wind, with gusts of 45 mph. I know that is nothing for you guys in the Northeast and Canada as Earl roared up the coast.
The big Norway maples on our street always make life miserable in the fall. Some years they earn their keep with gorgeous displays of color, but not every year. Occasionally, the leaves look like a fire ravaged the canopy.
Not sure what to expect this year. Many of the trees are in maple decline and have small, distorted leaves anyway. Branches are always falling during windstorms.
This morning I was out in the garden checking the damage and picking the annuals to cull. Took a few photos of the annuals and perennials ‘fore both the anxious gardener with the spade and ominous clouds rolled in.
The two standards are hanging in there, but the rose was on its side this morning. The wind toppled it. The Duranta is still pumping out little racemes of flowers, but should be starting to produce berries as the weather cools. Both will move to the garage in early December. The alyssum and impatiens are quite happy and I will not be pulling them for a while yet.
Tomorrow, the Osteospermum will be composted and the front beds will get a tilling. If I am feeling up to tackling the lily bed, iris will be split and the bed composted. Pretty unlikely, but I can always dream. Bulbs come in around October 5 or so, and I have time, but still want to be ready early.
Some plants are going gangbusters, like the coleus to the left. There are two hydrangeas in that pot getting eaten alive. One lone flower is sticking out. They are planted in a large copper tub and I have never seen coleus this aggressive. This has been a strange year for plants. Look at the Ipomoea below. Not one flower all year on six plants climbing skyward. Never before has this happened. Vines eating vines.
We have had little insect damage, and few insects at all. I do not treat with chemicals, so I am not sure what is going on. Lots of bees, so at least they must be rebounding.
I would love to say that I have been successful with integrated pest management and make Cornell proud that one of their Master Gardeners is following recommendations, but I know I am not the best practitioner. I have seen very few beneficial insects because there are no destructive ones either. I am going to have to investigate this further. We have been too bug-free this year. I am ready to buy my ladybugs.
Or, maybe they are hanging out high up in the trumpet vine. I will be eventually getting up on the garage roof to trim the beast soon. As pretty as it is in summer, in fall it needs work. Loads of work.
In gardening, the work is never done, and our Goofy Gardener is getting in gear. See what he is up to tomorrow.
Have a great Labor Day and Happy Monday to All.