Thursday, October 31, 2019

The last of October - leaves, leaves, leaves

Because I have a hard time with winter's bare skeletal plants in my garden, I tend to focus on growing a lot of evergreen specimens. So at any given time during the year there's a constant but gentle layer of leaves that need to be removed from the garden beds, the paths and the patios. But each year when autumn hits, I'm reminded in full force and volume just how many deciduous specimens I really have in the garden, and how many, many deciduous trees my neighbors have.

Here's the stunning fall foliage of my 'Natchez' Crape Myrtle. It's been spectacular for almost a month now.

And here is the leaf drop from it over the last week. What with the colder temps and the strong winds we've had for the past few days, the leaves are really piling up all over my garden.

My backyard neighbor's pin oak is nearly done, but those leaves are all BIG.

Across the street to the south, two pin oaks in my neighbor's front yard have just begun to shed. But another neighbor's deciduous magnolia behind us  and our own Sunset maple and Prairifire crab apple are doing their best to contribute to the effort.

The maple, crab apple and oak leaves festoon the front lawn and beds. You can't even see the steel edging that separates the beds from our rather sad excuse for a lawn.

The south hell strip plants are being swallowed in leaves; in there somewhere are Ceanothus 'Valley Violet' and Salvia argentea in need of immediate rescue.

It has been so windy that sweeping off my front porch is just an exercise in futility. But now that the wind has died down a bit, I can finally start clearing out the beds. That, coupled with the continuing autumn leaf-fall, should keep me busy for at least the next three weeks.
But tonight, I just hope the neighborhood kiddos will be able to find their way through the shifting leaf drifts to Trick-or-Treat at my door!

I hope you're enjoying this last beautiful day of October as much as I am – Happy Halloween!


  1. Happy Halloween, Jane! And a Spooky Samhain too! What a lot of leaves you have. I hope you get lots of kiddos. We only got one last year, and this year don't plan to turn our light on at all. We've gotten fewer and fewer every year.

  2. I've got basically one deciduous tree, Chionanthus retusus, which throws debris year round like my evergreens; the flowers in spring, the berries drop heavy in fall but also drop year round, and then the big leaf drop which won't come for a couple months, though those fall all the time too. Incredibly, I used to feel the need to plant something around its 6X6 base, a square between two patios. Coming to my senses, I keep it bare and sweep all the detritus into the square constantly, then use it elsewhere for mulch. Still capable of learning a few new tricks! Don't do all that cleanup at once, Jane!


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