Winters going to happen again, summer is over, so let’s just move things along, shall we. Let there be a killing frost.
Then it can warm up again for a few days, but not get too warm, while I clean up the garden, empty out the containers, and put all the garden doo-dads away for the winter.
You see, I need that first frost to trigger something inside me to start serious garden clean up. Without it, I seem to be able to pretend winter isn’t going to happen, again, and there is plenty of time before the snow flies. I putter around in the fall garden but don’t seem to make much progress.
But there isn’t much time left. Times a-wasting, let’s get going. Bring on the frost!
I know it might mean the end of this foxglove, with a nice new bloom that I didn’t notice for Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day last week. If I had noticed it, I would have made a big fuss over it, and perhaps featured it as the “lead” flower instead of tomato blossoms. Maybe it just started blooming?
But this is no time to be sentimental about a bloom! If we have to sacrifice this bloom to the first frost, so be it. Let’s just move this end of the season along. Chop chop, hurry up!
Notice that I left an earlier bloom stalk on the foxglove, hoping seeds will mature and fall to the ground to germinate somewhere in the garden. I am also hoping that I’ll have the good sense not to mistake the foxglove seedlings for honest-to-goodness weeds and pull them in the spring.
Really, I was ready for the end of the season, and then I saw this.
It’s one of the Delphiniums that I started from seed this spring and it’s sending up a bloom stalk, getting ready to bloom.
It’s not a towering gigantic Delphinium but Delphiniums have alluded me for so long, I’ll welcome any bloom from one.
Yes, this Delphinium bloom changes everything.
Why hurry up this end of the season? What’s the big rush?
Let’s just slow this whole change of seasons down a bit, shall we? Let the first frost wait until this Delphinium has bloomed, or at least bloomed enough that I can cut it and bring it inside to enjoy.
Is that too much to ask?
I hope you get your delphinium bloom. I’ve never been able to grow them, either, but once I got some larkspur to grow from seeds. It just wasn’t the same.
We had our first freeze last night – everything is “burned” this morning, so it’s time for us to finish the clean up we started this past weekend.
I hope you get your wish but I am not ready to let go of blooming beauties and the butterflies and bees! I will be outside with my sheets covering up the lantana if our first frost is a light one with warmer weather predicted! I am totally embracing denial! Gail
LINDA from Each Little World says
I have barely begun the cleanup. And we don’t clean our pond til all the leaves are down which is mid Nov. Have bulbs that need attention, mulch to spread — yikes!
And I saw Queen Anne’s lace and chicory blooming on Sat. The plants were very short but in full bloom.
I like the release of that first frost, too.
I think that’s what makes our summers hard. It’s hard to decide at what point to just cut the losses and clean up and wait for fall. You don’t want to do it too soon–sometimes Austin summers are survivable.
But when you do it too late, you’re left toiling away, watering and fretting, trying to keep plants going that will never revive anyway.
I’ve put all my eggs in the fall garden basket this year–so I’m not looking forward to a freeze. But it would be nice if the trees would drop their leaves so my fall veggies could get some sun.
Your delphinium is definitely worth putting a complete stop to the season change that has already begun. Did you send out the memo? Tell the brakeman to pull ‘er up!
Rock rose says
This is getting scary- you with delphiniums and the columbine in my garden and I noticed cleome seedlings all over the place and I don’t think they are half hardy. Must check that one. I would give anything for winter to come and even though we are having glorious fall days with 85 degree temperatures my fall garden is screaming at me for planting it too soon. I think I lost a rhubarb plant today because the sun was just too strong for it. It wasn’t enough to have rain. Love that foxglove. One of my absolute favorite flowers.
I too, must be be like you. I can’t foresee winters arrival and I will wait until the weatherman forecast of a freeze before I try to rescue those last blooms of the season.
Annie in Austin says
Wouldn’t it be nice to know a Frost Fairy something like the ones in Fantasia? One that would pick and choose on our command?
I’d let her frost the annual red salvia, because I’m tired of it, but I kept those darned pepper plants going all summer so that fairy must leave all the little developing peppers alone for at least one more month!
I hate to lose a special flower, so in your situation I’d probably put a tomato cage over the delphinium and hang old sheets over it with fingers crossed. But that won’t work for you, Carol, because you’re a staker instead of a cager so you don’t even have any tomato cages ;-]
Annie at the Transplantable Rose
I can’t relate, Carol, because I never wish for my least favorite gardening season, summer, to hurry on along. As for a frost, I’m not quite ready for that either. I must get the raised beds at the new house ready for the ‘Whale’s Tongue’ agave and a few other transplants before we even start thinking about a freeze.
To frost or not to frost and when will it happen? Not here, for a bit yet, probably sooner for you than later. I’m hoping your Delphinium gets to do its thing first.~~Dee
I know what you mean – now that the leaves have started to fall I am beginning to feel an increasing sense of urgency on tidying up.
Corner Gardener Sue says
I am with Gail, embracing denial. I figure spring arrived late, so now, winter can, too. I want to enjoy my flowers and butterflies as long as I can. Of course, other than my pots, I usually end up cleaning up in the spring.
Mr. McGregor's Daughter says
Maybe a light frost won't stop the Delphinium from blooming. Then again, maybe we won't get any sub-zero days this winter. I'm glad that I don't need a frost to direct my garden activities. I don't have a big veggie garden that needs cleaning up, so I mostly just leave things til spring. I deadhead the Asters as they go out of bloom, but that doesn't depend on the weather, and the leaves fall & pile up regardless of frost. I hope you get to see a Delphinium bloom soon. Otherwise, "wait until next year!"
I am finding myself waiting for a frost as well. I cannot bring myself to “clean-up” anything that is still blooming. It seems that here in Nebraska, we will have that freeze and then jump right into winter. I would rather cleanup in above freezing temps. Great blog.