Tuesday, September 17, 2013

A Return To The Garden

I took the photo above around 6:30 am this morning on my way in to work.  The rising sun just hit the big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii) in our prairie perfectly and the start of the pinkish/red fall "tinting" really looked great in perfect morning light.  The Fall Plant Sale is officially over although we still have some mums that we're willing to part with throughout the rest of the week.  Overall, the sell went well and we appreciate all the customers that purchased plants to help RBG with this vital fundraiser.  The rain on Sunday didn't help sales much but overall, we did see many plants disappear.  Some of the consignment plants have already headed back to the nursery and we'll take the rest of the week packing the sale away in an organized fashion.  We did get some nice donations from the sale from the vendors and appreciate that support as well.  While I spent time with the sale today, everyone else was able to get out in the gardens for various tasks including watering, leaf collection, mowing, etc.  The gardens definitely have been touched by Autumn but are still very beautiful.  Below are some other shots from today.

'Kohaku' toadlily (Tricyrtis hybrida) - perennial
Endless Summer hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla 'Bailmer') - shrub

While there was plenty of frivolity today (see Patrea in stripes and Kay above), the volunteers accomplished a wide range of tasks.  Patrea, Kay, Eva (below) and Pat R. all worked in the shade garden collecting leaves, weeding and tidying. They did a wonderful job and brought back many loads of debris. Vicki, Steve, Tina B. and Doris R. helped "un-tag" the perennials in the plant sale which involved removing our pricing from all the plants going back to our vendors.  Tina moved on to watering the mums, Doris to sign processing and both Vicki and Steve headed in to the gardens to pick vegetables and tidy in the ornamental edible beds and Rainbow Garden.  Stan was in to work in the Japanese garden and both Dr. Gredler and Bill O. worked on mowing around the gardens.  Vern was working on carpentry projects all day.  Janet T. spent some time tidying up the lime wall which still looks spectacular.  I hope some of the 7th graders that helped plant that wall in May came back to see the results of their labor!  Magda did some solid planting in her garden space and we also saw Betty H., Deb G., Joy O., Shirley B. and many others.  

Eva collecting leaves in the shade garden
Doris (left) and Tina "un-tagging" the plant sale
Rollie (left) and Dr. Yahr (combined age of 206)
Billy O. mowing the arboretum
Vern holding 'Tromboncino' climbing squash (Cucurbita moschata) picked today by Vicki and Steve

Nice shot directly above featuring the blooms of 'Brunette' fairy candles (Cimicifuga simplex) which is a perennial that also features maroon foliage.  These late blooms are welcome and are also fragrant (some might say stinky).  The grounds staff had a busy day.  Terry stopped by and will be back to work next week.  Jenny removed the flossflower (Ageratum) collection which was looking quite spent.  She also watered and worked on some other projects in other areas.  Cheryl also removed some annuals, tidied, watered containers and helped water the plant sale remnants later.  Cindy also watered, tidied, did the cutting display and spent some solid time in the All-America Selections (AAS) garden which still looks great but has some annuals finishing up for the year.  Big John set up a couple sprinklers, push mowed, watered, helped out in the plant sale and is doing a tidying project near the main building.  Larry also push mowed, weed whipped and helped with other projects.  Everyone helped load up plants to be returned to one of our sale vendors.  It was a beautiful day and perfect weather for gardening.  Don't miss our Wednesday evening lecture tomorrow night!  Below are some details...

From the Mountains to your Backyard: Alpine Plants and Rock Gardening
Wednesday, September 18, from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Join Rock Gardening expert, Ed Glover as he shares his extensive knowledge of home rock gardening.  Ed has managed the rock garden at Allen Centennial Gardens in Madison for the last 10 years and is also involved with the rock garden at RBG. 

RBG Friends Members & Master Gardener Volunteers
$5/General Public $7

More shots from today are directly below...

bloom of the devil's bit scabious (Succisa pratensis) - perennial
spiky seed capsules of the 'New Zealand Purple' castor bean (Ricinus communis) - annual
fruits (drupes) of the female white fringetree (Chionanthus virginicus)
more veggies from the garden (most will be donated)
the sunken garden looking exquisite this morning

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