Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Autumn Joy Sedum

Autumn Joy sedum is one of my favorite plants because it is so easy to grow and propagate. It is also extremely drought tolerant is is a wonderful food source for honey bees.

Autumn Joy sedum flower heads are really made up of hundreds of tiny flowers, tightly clustered together on thick stems.

This photos is from the last snow in February 2008. Left to dry overwinter, the stems and flower heads not only provide architectural elements to the garden, but they keep providing food for insects and early orchard mason bees.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Frost Asters

At this time of year, the only things still blooming in my gardens are the Autumn Joy sedum, Goldenrod, and the Frost Asters. The asters looks like miniature daisies.

They grow in large clumps in several areas of my gardens and wildflower meadow.

Early on autumn mornings, when you look out the windows, the asters remind you of snow flakes dancing above the ground.

I think it's beautiful when the asters and goldenrod are mingled together, growing in the same space.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Goldenrod (Solidago) is the state flower of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and it is one of my favorite flowers. Contrary to popular belief, goldenrod does not cause hayfever because the pollen is too thick to travel very far in the wind. Most of the autumn allergies contributed to goldenrod are actually caused by ragweed, which blooms at the same time.

Goldenrod is the host plant to many insects, bugs and butterflies. There are over 18 different varieties of goldenrod native to Kentucky.

I have several plots of goldenrod growing on my one acre property.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Sweet Autumn Clematis

I love this time of year, when the Sweet Autumn Clematis is blooming. I have two that are threatening to take over sections of my garden - and I LOVE it! This clematis is growing over my septic tank area and is the only plant - except for a snowball bush - that is growing in this area. All spring and summer, the clematis grows rapidly, spreading dark green leaves throughout the area. In late August or early September, when the blooms start coming on, the greenry disappears behind the canopy of white flowers.

The individual flowers of the clematis are fairly small, but the profusion of petals makes a stunning sight when they start to bloom. And the smell - WOW - they smell wonderful! A light, sweet smell that fragrants the late afternoon air.

This clematis is threatening to take over my small shed. Light pruning in early spring helps to remove old growth, so this vine has grown this much in one season. (It is growing up a six foot post.)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Time to Mow the Back 40

It's getting close to time to mow my one acre backyard. The wildflowers have been beautiful, but most of them are now going to seed. I usually mow this area in late September, then I use the "hay" to seed bare areas in my meadow garden. The hay is full of wildflower seeds and this is an easy way for me to increase the size of the meadow garden.
This photo shows the grass pathway I keep mowed through my meadow garden.
This photo shows some of the drying grass in another area of the meadow garden.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

It's Time to Plant the Garlic

It's that time of year again - time to plant the garlic. Although I'm no expert on growing garlic, this will be my second season and I'm looking forward to it. For more expert advice on growing garlice, check out Bifurcated Carrots - they always have GREAT advice! (This photo is from this past spring.)

I recently finished harvesting the last of my onions, so I will be planting my garlic in the same bed. After tilling up the soil, I amended it with some compost. I got my seed garlic from the local Southern States, so I only have one variety. One of these years, I'll try some new varities, but for now, I'm still learning.

I harvested about 3 dozens heads of garlic this spring and I was so proud! I'm hoping to increase my plantings this fall, so I'll have more garlic with the coming spring. (This photo is also from the spring.)