Today is one of the first in many weeks that doesn't include running irrigation zones and setting up sprinklers in multiple locations! That rain yesterday was great and while we'll water as needed this week, it looks like we might get more rain later in the week which would be nice. It was a cool (65 degrees F), sunny day with plenty of blue sky and the Fall Plant Sale was extended for a one day only clearance (15% off). We saw steady traffic and the mums continued to flow out nicely. Above is a shot looking up through the 20' tall obelisk in the Giant Garden. The vine is the 'Ruby Moon' hyacinth bean (Dolichos lablab) which is quite vigorous and had no problem climbing quickly to the top after the rabbits stopped nibbling on it! I was able to leave the clearance sale in Janice's capable hands and I did spend some time out in the gardens and "reconnecting." The overall color still looks great but that "touch of Autumn" was in the air and is starting to show out in the gardens. We start removing "tired" annuals this time of year. Below are some of my shots from today.
bloody dock (Rumex sanguineus ssp. sanguineus) - perennial (edible!)
'Pesto Perpetuo' columnar basil (Ocimum x citriodorum) - annual
'Pomegranate' double purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) - perennial
'Field of Dreams' variegated corn (Zea mays) - annual
We had a great assortment of volunteers today helping out in the gardens, at the Horticulture Center and with the plant sale. Thanks to Alice, Joy, Pat, Terri, Mary and Roy for helping with the Fall Plant Sale Clearance today (15% off). It's hard to believe that the fall sale used to be over two weekends and run about 13 sequential days! Our Grumpies did some great garden clean up today as there were many leaves down after the rains yesterday. Above is Larry H. in the sunken garden working with Lloyd (directly below). Gary (next photo down) also did a nice job collecting leaves. Bob C. and Gene finished hauling our holiday lights from garage storage to the Horticulture Center for future testing and repair. The guys then moved on to leaf collection out in the gardens. Rollie took down all the rope, posts, etc. out in our temporary parking lot. Ron W. came in for some clean-up duties as well. Vern, Jim, Dave and Ron Y. continued work on their three new memorial benches. Vern and Dave can be seen a couple photos down (note Dave's shirt that reads WE ARE THE GRUMPIES). Dick H. (third photo down) was a super handy man today and repaired one of our John Deere gators, a riding mower and then he cut more aluminum for our plant labels. Pat C. came in to create more labels and was later back to place them out in the gardens and swap out the old ones. Dr. Gredler was also in for his mowing rounds. Shirley H. came in and did a great job tidying up the reception garden, sunken garden and Nancy Yahr Memorial Children's Garden. Betty H. was also in for the tidying efforts in her two assigned garden areas.
more Autumn crocus (Colchicum autumnale 'The Giant') blooming!
With watering covered for the day, the grounds staff was able to do some traditional gardening. Jenny (above) tidied up in the fern & moss garden and hosta hollow garden to start the day. She moved on to other tasks and did a nice inventory project in our fern collection that will help with re-ordering for next spring. Janice spent the day in the plant sale and kept everything running well for the last day of this fundraiser. She also started the task of organizing plant sale elements prior to putting everything away. Larry did a full day of weed whipping around the gardens which was good timing. Big John smoothed out our primary path (getting potholes), planted some containers, watered and did other odds and ends. It was a productive day and I spent most of my time catching up on the paperwork for the sale (bills, etc.) and other duties. Below are some other images from today.
'Bone Fish' Under the Sea coleus (Solenostemon scutellarioides) - annual
Pinky Winky panicled hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata 'DVPpinky') - woody shrub
'Red Head' fountain grass (Pennisteum alopecuroides) - perennial
"Pollinator's Paradise" is still looking sharp
the iconic arched bridge