That's it. It seems I have been out numbered and can't possibly resist. The Red Clover blog will now officially spell the word color, with a "u". It is a practice I am not opposed to, seeing how my husband and I occasionally do it for kicks, and I insist on spelling Grey with an "e" instead of the American "a". It's just that most of my blog friends use that spelling, and I have been overruled.
In retrospect I realized that my last post, while it dealt with vines, was really a subversive Ode to Fall. It obviously was a biased commentary, and the potato vines, which are still a light green, were completely passed over. I was like the media covering a political campaign; giving my favorite candidate a lot of positive takes, and sending in a really horrible picture of the other to that skeptical story. Not that I want to give you the impression I wasn't paying attention to the vines...I was, I just noticed that, well, all the vines had one similarity; Appreciation of Autumn. Oh, well. I might as well continue in the theme of fall and share with you a picture that gave me so much delight, I figured it would be good for your souls, too.
If I could only pick one reason to have a white wall somewhere on the outside of my house, this would be it. The picture is significantly brighter on full scale, and presents the most delicious orange dripping down into itself. I was enchanted.
Bliss Carmen once wrote "There is something in the Autumn that is native to my blood" in her poem Vagabond Song. I have loved that poem growing up, perhaps because I felt a kinship with what she was saying. The pageant of colors that we pass in life during the fall is breathtaking, and when you add air that feels like it was cased in ice just long enough to break into your lungs, well, then you have the perfect fall day.
I decided a week or so ago, on my daily walk down to the university to meet Kip, that I would study what kind of vines I liked for their fall coloring. Now, the downside is that I won't be able to give you any of the names. The upside is that you all probably know the names. If you don't we can figure it out together.
This is the very tree that started it all. I passed this one morning and loved the idea of a vine turning red in the autumn against a white tree trunk. I mean, can't you just see a bright red vine mixing with a yellowing aspen?
On campus I came across these vines on a wall. I love the alternate between red and green, and hope they stay that way, because it adds some nice style. This would be a nice thing for someone to do in their yard against a back fence or something.
A close up.
I forgot to turn this picture right side up, so just lean your head to the left. This bright red vine had jumped from the fence and climbed significantly into the tree. I loved the colors against the dark trunk. Here are a few more shots of that spectacle.
Ta da! Here is your aspen with the red. Very festive, don't you think? It would be nice to plant a small stand of aspens in the corner somewhere, and help this vine twist it's way upward, so when October came around, bang! You had a sight to behold!
Last, but not least. I adored how they let the two vines climb up the white fence. It adds such a richness to the yard.
You may have guessed that I am indeed a fan of mixing the red/orange and green vines. All my pictures seem biased to that combination. Well, what can I say, when something works... After my short study I have decided that when you plant vines in your yard, you need to know what color they will be in the fall. You might find yourself with some easy pigment for those months when the world is slipping into frost.
I thank you all for you comments about my geranium! My goal is survival through the winter and with your loving support we should make it through.
I hunted up Bob's (dreadnought) comments that mentioned geraniums and thought the whole thing was informative for those of use who are very inexperienced. Thanks Bob, please sue me after I've made my millions, since I didn't ask your permission first. Smiles.
"Geraniums will stand being dry more than they will being wet, especially in winter when its best to keep them on the dry side as they are prone to rot if too wet. For this same reason if you cut them back I would do it in the spring or early summer that way they will heal before the rot sets in. Your Dahlia will like plenty of water through the summer, the water needs to be able to drain away though. I see you have a saucer under the Geranium which is okay to catch any stray water but lots of plants don't like to be stood in water for a long time. The Dahlia will have its foliage killed by the frost which is okay, just cut this off 4 to 6 inches above the ground, tip it out of its pot and clean the dirt from the roots which are called 'Tubers'. They will look a bit like Potatoes and feel firm to the touch. Leave them upside down somewhere frost free to dry for a couple of weeks and then they need to be put in some sort of container filled with moist peat or compost and kept in a cool, dark but frost free place for the winter, the peat/compost only needs to be very slightly damp, you're not trying to grow them just keep the tubers from drying out. If that seems too much trouble throw it away and buy a new one next spring! By the way, the spider plant looks good. Bob."
Thanks again, Bob. You are like the patron saint of gardening, or something. And next year I won't throw out my Dahlia tubers.
My geranium is doing weird things. Since this is my first geranium I suppose it's normal for me to be surprised by this or that. It's just that with all the gardening books on the market, no one writes about how to deal with the important growing stages of the geranium. I am a first time geranium potter, and don't know how to handle this. You see, over the last week my geranium has slowly began to change color. It's not drying up, not at all, it's leaves are just turning this beautiful red and orange.
I am charmed on one hand, and slightly worried on the other. Am I killing it? Is this going to to do irrevocable damage to my geraniums psyche? Will he blame me for things all his life, because I neglected to do the correct thing in this stage of his development? Or do I just have a gifted and artistic geranium that needs understanding, no fences. Was he really meant to be planted in a real garden instead of just a pot? Nature vs. Nurture? Sigh. His blooms are doing quite well, the coloring is normal for fall, and I know that dreadnought left some comment to me about how to winterize geraniums....I think I will go hunt it up
I called my Aunt Marjorie the other night to say "thank you" for allowing me to use her garden for my blog...you see, she didn't know about it because she was in New York City ;) She was pleased and wished you could see it in full bloom. I also learned a few things I though you would all enjoy.
Do you remember the pond in her back yard? Well, my Aunt and Uncle were hosting an open house in their backyard for a departing missionary, and decided a week before to build a water feature. (You must understand that my mom's family is a little crazy. Whenever my Dad goes out of town my mom goes to town redecorating the house. He is currently in Japan. Yeah, you get the picture.) They spend the week moving giant rocks, digging more of them out of the ground, digging, digging, digging, arranging everything, setting up the mechanics of it, etc. Did I mention that, although it was May, it snowed during the week? She said they got it in on Friday night and tweaked it during the day on Saturday and walah!, they had a water feature!
The net over the coy was to protect them from Blue Heron.
Jennifer asked how long it took them to put the garden together? My aunt said it has been a work in progress over many years. Each year she thinks of something different she would like to do.
dreadnought remarked on the sun. The week before had been freezing, with a few fluries of snow, and then this last week made warm weather the victor. We had gorgeous high 70's. The transition of season's always brings similar yo-yo effects here in the west. It's very sunny today, but rather brisk outside. These are my favorite days of the year, with the trees all aflame.
My aunt also sent me these pictures. I guess some elk decided to hang around their front yard for awhile. !!!
Every Tuesday I am invited to the "Official Game Night" at my best friend's grandparent's house. (Whew!) Rose and I have been friends for many years, and she lives in Washington D.C. right now, so I spend every Tuesday night with her grandma, grandpa, aunt Jan, mom and dad. I noticed this great pot a few weeks ago. It is very bright, but the orange works so well with the dark green plant that it's quite charming, and makes you think of a pumpkin vine.
As many of you know I just returned from vacation in Colorado. It was great! I spent a lot of time looking at my aunt's garden, as she has done an excellent job with it. Here are a few things I really liked; maybe you'll get a few ideas.
Yes, dreadnought, this is a frog. (Loved the story of your mom and frogs. I have a picture for you.) I like the grasses set up against the water feature.
Another shot of the roses in the middle of the pond. It's October, so they are not in prime condition, but you get the picture. I loved it!
Her use of rock and plant really enhances the yard, especially considering the view is a majestic vista of the two.
You already have seen this, but it's so nice.
She had several lily pads in the pond. I just love lily pads! Behind the pond is this fire pit. At night, as you sit by the fire, you can hear the coyotes calling to the moon, and deer running past.
At the very edge of her property my aunt has this small sitting area. This is my favorite part of the garden. The land behind her house is protected by the government, and cannot be built on. Lucky them!
One of the patio sitting areas.
The fish. I assume the net is so hawks can't take off with the gold fish.
Green and red; a nice combination. The step up to the deck is the rock I am standing on. Using the natural habitat around you enhances the feeling of your garden. My aunt did a great job with bringing the feel of Colorado into her gardening. Please notice the painted toe nails, they took a lot of work.
And at night there are lamps to give ambiance to the whole scene.
I recall my aunt talking about one of the problems they have had with their plants, deer. One thing she has mentioned is that if you make a mixture of cyan pepper with water and spray it on the plants the deer won't eat the leaves. (They can't leave their cats out thought, or the coyotes will eat them:) Thanks for joining me on this garden tour! What did you like the best?
This is a sneak peak with purpose, if you will. I am staying at Aunt Marjorie's house, and planning on doing a garden tour of her backyard. One thing that I have really liked is that she planted Miniature Roses in the middle of her water feature. It's kind of a nice touch.
Yesterday we spent the entire day driving to Denver, Colorado to visit the Grandparents. The crew consists of Me, Kip, Mom, two sisters, two brothers, one cousin, a nephew, and a niece. Whew! It's been fun so far. On our way we stopped at a place called Hanging Lake. The unique thing about this lake is that because there is travertine (I think that's what it is called) in the water it makes the water turquoise and the lake is very clear. Beautiful. So, I took some pictures for you.
The drive through Utah and Colorado can be quite interesting as far as natural formations go.
A small cave we ran into on the hike.
Hanging Lake! The sun wasn't shinning directly, otherwise it would be a bright, bright turquoise. I loved how the grasses had grown out onto the log.
This is the fall that feeds the fall that falls into Hanging Lake. (Redundant, I know) Do you see how it is coming right out of the rock?
Part of the crew: brother, brother, husband, me, nephew, sister, sister.
It was so beautiful! There is something in the air that is wild about the American west. It is so big, and because it has not been inhabited in the same way other parts of the world have been, there is a sense of clarity and space in these mountains. No wonder the Native American's had such an awe and reverence for the land in which they lived.
Another thought I had was that nature is a fantastic gardener. I hope you enjoyed this one. More to come!!!
I like pots. I like unique pots. I don't like faddish pots, or pots that take away from the plants/flowers therein. Don't get me wrong. They can be bright and colorful, but not obnoxious. This pot was given to me by my sister's South African mother-in-law. I think it's great! While I was re-potting about a month ago this pot was inhabited by the remains of a grass (the cousin to corn). I was trying to figure out where to put these Pansies, and they kept asking to be put here.
"No," I said "You will look ridiculous with the grass. I am not going to do that."
"No, we won't." They insisted. "That is where we want to be potted. We don't like any of the others you have here."
I ignored them for about fifteen minutes, and finally gave in. Pansies are very persuasive flowers.
They didn't look half bad, and at first I thought my little stalk would be pleased at the company. Little did we know that the Pansies were not planning on co-habitation. They were aiming for pot domination. Which they did; I still like them, though.