First, a technical note: As you know, life’s been a little unsettled here at the Midnight Garden this fall. Not in a bad way, for the most part, but certainly the blog is not as highly organized as t’was before my own move and the move to a new blog hosting sight.
I’d heard from at least one of you that you were missing the old Gardener’s Soundtrack playlist I featured at the old Blogger location, and so last evening, I tried to bring that here to WordPress. You’ll see it’s there in the right column and you can click on it to launch the pop-out player…but I can’t seem to make it play automatically, or randomly as the page loads. So forgive the technical glitch and if you’re looking for some tunes while you visit, there they be. Turn up your speakers – there might be something you’ll like! If not, you can always turn ’em back down again.
The good news is that, in the process of trying to figure out how to get the HTML over there in the right column, I stumbled across the place I needed to find in order to populate my Blogroll with all my favorite blogs and bloggers. Yay. So there’s that!
All those things sort of help to take the sting out of the sudden (but perhaps overdue) arrival of wintery weather here on the Outer Cape. Tuesday morning, I was having a cup of coffee, noting that it was cold, but still considering going for a walk. As I watched, the skies darkened and there was a great noisy precipitation, as we were pelted with graupel.
Graupel is that pellet-y stuff that isn’t snow, but isn’t quite hail. Anyway, as you can see, we got a bit of it. For my part, I passed on the walk and was content to lounge around the Nest a little longer with a second cup of coffee, instead.
For those of you who are keeping track (I’d forgotten, until I had a congratulatory email from my good friends at QuitNet.com), Tuesday marked my Four Month Anniversary without cigarettes. I’m really feeling very good about it…and I do try to remember this when other things are getting me down. Although I forget from time to time, I don’t want to get complacent about the smoking. My most successful previous attempt, after all, lasted eight months. But still, it’s an occasion worth marking, and at least offering a little Woo Hoo over, if not a full blown celebration.
The rest of Tuesday was a little better, since the sun returned pretty quickly after our brief graupel storm. It was one of those bright, golden Cape Cod days…but our temperature never quite got to 40 and there was a sense that the season really had turned, as we knew it eventually would.
So it wasn’t much of a surprise to wake up yesterday morning to a skyful of snow flurries, swirling around outside the windows and making tiny little drifts here and there on the landscape and the porch.
This reminded me of several things: first, there were a few storm windows I hadn’t fully closed here at the Nest. So I took care of those. But I had also, amidst many other things, purchased a few small, inexpensive bags of flower bulbs which I needed to get into the ground, a little investment toward next spring’s celebrations.
Planting bulbs was not foremost in my mind this fall, and so by the time I got around to identifying a few bucks for this, and then to actually checking to see what was available in the store, the choices were somewhat limited. No crocuses, no grape hyacinths…none of those tiny pretties I love so well.
However, there were some nice purple globe alliums. The package indicates I can hope they might be as tall as three feet. There were, I think, seven in the pack. The other two packages were tulips, each package holding four each of two different colors.
Since it’s a small patch of garden I’m planting in just now, two packages seemed more than enough, but I think the four colors will work well together.
You can see in the background above that the upper levels of this coneflower plant have already died back, even though it’s pressed out one more little flower just in the last week.
At the feet of the coneflower, though, is a clump of white allyssum. It grew from some of the last seed I sowed in the Harwich garden this year, and these seedlings were traveling partners in the same pot with the coneflower when it came time to move.
Allyssum is one of the hardier annuals and I’ve seen it escape a garden and travel all over the place. In some parts of Provincetown, I have found great clouds of the stuff growing from the tiniest crack in the pavement. So I have some hope that this stuff may survive the winter and or at least spread itself around some.
And if not, well, it’s sure easy enough to throw some more seed around! Meanwhile, this happy little flowers were an interesting compare/contrast moment with the tiny white flowers of snow flying through the air as I was planting bulbs. It was, as always, fun to be doing something in the garden, despite – or perhaps because – of the weather.
In fact, when I was finished with the planting, I added one more layer…and a hat…and went for a short walk down by the marsh.
I wish I knew what these pink and orange berries were. They were growing on a small tree/bush on the marsh side of the road. Because of that location, I assume that it was a wild plant, but I can’t say that for sure; who knows how property plots may be laid out along the road…and even if its wilderness land, there’s no guarantee that birds haven’t brought in the seed from some fancy landscape star to the location.
Anyway, I like these berry/seedpod things, since you don’t see pink ones very often. This time of year, of course, they’re very striking.
They seem to crack open a little in the center, as some of them have an orange center pod thing to them (none of the ones I managed to focus on, though). And it seems to me to be kind of rare that you see those two colors so closely combined. So that’s nice, too.
Last week, I showed you some pretty golden mums with sort of tubular petals. This ruffly red chrysanthemum is from a different patch of the same garden, which is just down the road from the Nest.
I sure do love how the mums keep carrying on so late in the season out here.
As forecast, the sun did come out for a while in the afternoon and we saw some awfully pretty blue skies. But our temperature never rose above 34 and in fact, dropped down to 26 (!!) overnight. The season has turned and so the garden shows of today’s may soon be a thing of the past.
But also, a thing of the future. Which really is the best thing about gardening. There’s always hope, always a chance to start fresh.
To begin again.