This morning was cool and very foggy on the way to the gardens and throughout the gardens themselves. I like the foggy look though as seen both above and below. Above is the observation pier with the arched bridge in the distance. Directly below are the formal annual sections and those obelisks have looked great all year. They'll be out there with holiday lights on them soon as their contribution to the garden will continue throughout the Holiday Lights Show (HLS). The sunshine then took over and the fog and dew disappeared quickly. Thursdays, as usual, are always productive and today was no exception. There were a wide range of projects going on both at the Horticulture Center and out in the gardens. It's always nice to see more visitors coming to the gardens to catch the late season color. We've always been proud of our ability to extend the garden color and not look like a garden on "the decline". Of course, frost will be a big factor but it doesn't make sense to even try to predict when that will arrive.
formal annual sections this morning
the North point Adirondack chairs still offer a great view
the 'Silver Falls' aluminum plant (Dichondra argentea) cascades nicely
We had a diverse volunteer task list today but lots of able and willing help. Above is Janice (green) working with Vicki on repairing lights for the HLS. All the lights have been tested and those in the "to be repaired" section have become our next target. Joy O. came in to work with the ladies and Marilyn H. helped with this task later in the morning too. Shirley (directly below) did a great job tidying up the Scottish garden and sunken garden. The bright haze around Shirley is from her halo, not the rising sun as you might think. The second and third photos down show our Grumpettes removing impatiens from a bed that is looking a bit rough. Marilyn, Eva, Karla, Susie and Mary R. all worked in this area and shifted in to an adjacent area as well for more tidying efforts. Hal and Doris R. tidied up their assigned garden area with plant removals and primping. Betty H. was also in to tackle her two areas as well. The fourth photo down shows (from left to right), Ron P., Steve, Dick H. and Bob C. These guys spent the morning disassembling our many tents from the Fall Plant Sale. It is a science to make sure these tents are put away and stored properly so all the parts are together and ready to go for the sale next spring. The carpenters had a busy day. The fifth photo down shows Jim (left) and Dave on a cart. They were out in the gardens repairing some items. Vern and Ron Y. (sixth photo down) worked on benches. Vern continues ink the lettering on a new memorial bench and Ron Y. is staining the last of the three new benches made by the guys. Dr. Gredler did his mowing rounds and continues to aerate lawns as well. We also saw Mary W., Marsha M. and many others today.
The grounds staff had a full day (or a full half day in Cheryl's case...). Larry ran irrigation, push mowed, weed whipped, checked water features, watered and did a wide range of tasks. Big John set up sprinklers, watered trees, shrubs, containers and the yard, sheared, cut back grasses and also bounced between various projects. Cheryl did some watering and focused her tidying efforts near the gazebo which will host another wedding this weekend. It looks like we still have nine more weddings scheduled with the last one on October 26th! That can be a great time or a rough time depending on the weather of course. The frequency and severity of the frosts will also be a big factor. Janice helped orient our little elves (Vicki, Joy and Marilyn) with our lights repair procedures and went on to a wide range of gardening tasks later in the day. She did a nice job with the Chestnut House volunteers yesterday (leaf raking) too which I forgot to mention. I'm still bouncing between projects, had a meeting and continue to get poised and ready for the last stretch of 2013! Below are some other shots from today.
'Early Amethyst' purple beautyberry (Callicarpa dichotoma) - woody shrub
'The Blues' little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) - perennial
'Rozanne' perennial geranium (Geranium hybrida) - perennial
'Ginger Love' fountain grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides) - perennial
'Bright Lights' Swiss chard (Beta vulgaris) in a re-purposed pallet planter - annual
"STOP" by the gardens and catch late season color before it's gone!!!