Last Monday was the last day of Master Gardener classes--yahoo! However..we were given the take home exam which included 8 chapters of about 50 questions in each one. So I bet you can guess how I spent last week. I closed myself up and worked on the exam for 2 days straight. But I can happily say that the exam is finished, I will turn it in tomorrow. After one year of internship (volunteering 72 hours in MG projects), I will graduate and be an official "Master Gardener." Whew!
While I was busy with school, summer turned into fall and I realized this weekend that my little garden was in desperate need of attention. The first thing I did was clear out the old wash tub and plant 3 different kinds of kale with a few pansies tucked in.
The Mexican Mint Marigold started to bloom so it will stay where it is for a while. It dies back in winter so I may need to plant a few pansies to cover it when that happens. Note to self: need to cut this plant back in July--it got rather leggy this year.
All the seeds I planted are coming up nicely--well... we will talk about this later. There are a few TOO many seeds coming up nicely (that are not bluebonnets!)
My main area of concern were the beds along each side of the flagstone walkway, and around the the pond. The pond beds were just cleaned out and got some nice new mulch for winter. The flagstone beds were totally cleaned out and planted with pansies. I also added a few snapdragons to this bed. I have always wanted to try them, and seeing some healthy looking plants at Home Depot for a dollar-well, this seemed like the right time.
I added pansies to both sides of the walkway. These beds house daffodils and tulips down deep in the ground, so it's nice to have something to plant on top. When the bulbs start to pop up, the pansies will not get in the way-they just add more spring color to the show. Ummm, just the thought of that spring flower show makes me smile!
Have you heard of the new cascading pansies? I read about them a few weeks ago in the paper and decided to buy a pot, plant it in a hanging basket and see what happened. This one came from HD. I noticed the flowers are not as large as traditional pansies, but larger than violas. I'll give you updates on this plant. Hopefully by spring I will have an overflowing basket of sweet smelling flowers!
The old wheel-
barrow has not gotten a winter make over yet. Would you believe that those yellow flowers hanging over the side (all the way to the ground) are marigolds I planted last spring? Yep! They just keep blooming. I will say the foliage is starting to look kind of brown, so it won't be too long before I will have to pull them out and fill the wheelbarrow with something else, but until then I will just keep on enjoying fall in this space.
It's hard for me to believe this past year has gone by so fast. It's not cold here in Texas, but we are starting to get fronts that will bring us seasonal cooler weather. As I do so often when seasons change, I pull out my articles written so many years ago by the late Jo Northrop. I know I have mentioned this before-Jo Northrop was legally blind..but oh how I loved "seeing " the seasons through her eyes:
"The exquisite cranberry and chrysanthemum days of November are a gift. We intensely and thankfully absorb them, knowing the inevitability of sudden, bone-chilling cold. Even in clear autumn sunlight, a scarecrow among fallen leaves in a deserted garden looks cold. It is this deepening of the season, passage toward the end of the year that gives November a quality that is energy charged...In these fine cranberry-chrysanthemum days, every day can be a day of thanksgiving."