One gardener's observations, discoveries and random thoughts whilst simultaneously worshipping and dallying in a Cape Cod garden. "A garden," said Ralph Waldo Emerson, "is like those pernicious machineries which catch a man's coatskirt or his hand, and draw in his arm, his leg and his whole body to irresistable destruction."

The daisies really are at their peak right now. I have only just started to see the first fading blooms which will need to be dead-headed shortly.

For now, their show is glorious and entertaining and sort of happy-making at that, and so I thought today I’d simply indulge them, let them do their little dance while their moment is golden.

Speaking of golden, that great billowy bloom is one of those Chrysler tea roses, in all its blowsy wonderfulness. I wish you could enjoy the scent like I am!

Yesterday, as the afternoon’s heat was beginning to subside, I went out and addressed the issue of assorted grasses and other “weeds” which were making a stand around the mounds in the Three Sisters garden. It wasn’t a complicated project, really, just a matter of loosening up some hard-packed soil and tugging loose the seedlings I didn’t want.

That meant some careful work, as there’s also plenty I do want, like the seedlings I saw everywhere of chamomile. I’ve very excited about that, as they are doing quite nicely and I was hoping they might take over the area along the path in the center of that section of the garden.

Working close up there also called my attention to the two hens and chicks plants I planted near the birdbath earlier this spring. Both appeared to be quite pleased with the location.

This one (right)has created a whole ridge of the smaller plantlets which rises up between the three larger florets. I hope to tease free a few of those little guys on the edges to transplant over by the lamp post, where I think they might be equally happy.

The larger florets (is that the best way to refer to them, I wonder? Are they technically “florets”? I’m not sure what’s correct terminology in the world of botany…I’ll have to look it up later and get back to you.) look like they will be putting out some thick flower stems, like this one (below), which has already begun doing just that.

At the other end of the garden from the hens and chicks, and in another part of their family tree of succulents, this pretty pink portulaca presented.

Colorwise, the daylily and rudbeckia flowers play very nicely together about halfway along the fence. In the upper right corner, you may take note of another sunflower to come, still just a tight button.

This evening I had the opportunity to visit First Encounter Beach for a few moments, on the way home from a barbecue in Eastham. Happy Birthday, Lisa!

First Encounter is another of my most favorite spots, and quite possibly the best place to be at sunset.

It’s located just north of Rock Harbor (enlarge the photo above and look for signs of Rock Harbor to the south), and as its name indicates, this was where the first face-to-face meeting between pilgrims and natives occurred back in December 1620. It wasn’t a very peaceful encounter, however, as both arrows and musket balls flew. Here’s an account that seems to distill the facts of it all reasonably.

All the western- facing beachs on the Outer Cape are pretty great for sunset, and also, you can see that the strong sun and an evening high tide make it easy to hang out and enjoy your beach activities right until the sun sinks in the west.

Just be sure you pack some bug repellent–the greenheads were nasty tonight, as usual.

The bay beaches don’t see much in the way of strong waves, not like you do on the east-facing ocean beaches.

Here, I’m reminded of the lyrics from Carousel: the tide’s creeping up on the beach like a thief, afraid to be caught stealing the land.

You didn’t think I was just going to tell you about it, though, did you?

Since I wanted to get home for my walk with Emily before dark, I resisted the temptation to sit and listen to the tide lapping as the sun sank below the horizon.

In lieu of actual sunset photos, I’ll just slip in this daylily shot, which I actually took in our back yard yesterday…but completely forgot to include with last night’s post.

By the time I got back to Harwich, the pretty clouds which had drawn me to First Encounter in the first place were covered over by another layer of darker clouds, which now shrouds the starry sky in a blanket of puffy gray.

Even if it weren’t cloudy, we wouldn’t be able to see the binary asteroid system Asteroid 2008 BT18 when it glides past Earth tomorrow, unless we lived in the southern hemisphere. I was a little troubled that the article doesn’t actually mention how close Asteroid BT18 was suppose to be when it passes us…so I loaded up the little orbit diagram at the end of the article. And I’m gonna try not to think about that as I try to fall asleep tonight, looking at the glow-in-the-dark stars on my bedroom ceiling.

Hey, the forecast includes the possibility of rain over the next few days. Do you know where your slicker and galoshes are?


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