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."

In Autumn’s Garden


So, the recent frost hasn’t ended things just yet.  In fact, some things have only just decided to give blooming a try.  Case in point, the seashell cosmos.  Ain’t it purty?


Some of you may recall I tried growing these in the garden in Harwich last year, with no success.   But I’m so enamored of the look of them on seed packets that I tried again this year, and now I understand why none of them bloomed for me last year, if they are only just beginning the show now with the threat of a killing frost around any corner.

Still, you must admit they make a fabulous and frothy flower, at that.  I’ll certainly grow these again, but I think next year I’ll start them inside ahead of season, so I can enjoy their flowers a little longer.  And knowing that cosmos thrive in poor soil, I try to remember to segregate them from other annuals whom I usually give some fertilizer sprinklings throughout the season.

It’s certainly been an odd growing season.   The shasta daisies I featured yesterday are usually done blooming by mid-July, but this year are blooming their sweet heads off now, in October.  And the bachelors buttons – who were such chatterboxes with so much to say to the Gardener last year – are keeping their own counsel this year and have barely bloomed at all.  I think this one is the fourth.


But what a treat to find so much still merrily blooming after such a frosty start to the week.









Comments on: "In Autumn’s Garden" (8)

  1. Hello,

    Your garden is still so beautiful. I like the delicate pink of your Cosmos. But, I think my favorite are your hydrangeas.

  2. Even in the indirect light, the colors still pop. I especially like the bachelor’s button.

  3. I noticed a neighbor’s hydrangea is still blooming. I guess a few nights of 26 degree lows is withstandable. My geraniums are still blooming on the deck too.

  4. Did you have those scrumptious pink hydrangeas last year? The cosmos are charming, and the trace of red liner on the imperial petals is exquisite.

    Seems the floricultural conversation, as the bachelor buttons have shown, wafts from one quarter to another from year to year…

    Jeaux, those pink hydrangeas were here last year, but they hadn’t had someone pruning and deadheading them during the season last year…which might be why I don’t remember seeing them blooming last fall.

  5. The seashell cosmos and the calendula are stunning!!!

    The calendula are making a pretty strong comeback in these cool days of autumn. I need to remember to plant many more of them next year.

  6. Looks like the frosts may have spooked some of the plants into blooming: Flower now or there’ll be no more chances this year! In my last bout with cosmos I had a plant that grew fairly huge, but no flowers. And then bam the thing was covered with mauvey, pinky flowers. Definitely a test of patience, but like your cosmos, well worth the wait.

    I’d say your bachelors deserve a season off every now and then. They’ll be chatty all over again next year, maybe. Plants seem to have their up and down cycles like all of us…

  7. I love the tubular petals of the sea shell cosmos, utterly lovely. I’m a bit confused by your hydrangeas (although admittedly it doesn’t take much to confuse me!) I’m used to thinking of hydrangeas as hardy perennials and yet you seem to talk about them as if they’re annuals. I’m thinking you must have very harsh winters brrrr!

    Goo I never mentioned the hydrangeas this time out, only showed you photos! They are perennial shrubs, sometimes growing quite large here. The flower heads lose some of their early zip as the season goes on, but even after being frosted can look lovely for a while. Although this time of year, you sometimes see a dried hydrangea flowerhead rolling down the street like it was a tumbleweed.

  8. Told you I was easily confused! Thanks for that.

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