Today was overcast and somewhat chilly all day. We had some sprinkles in mid-afternoon but the bulk of our day was perfect for getting out in the gardens which still have some great fall color as seen in the photos above and directly below. Above is the south entrance to the Japanese garden which is already decorated with lights. The expanded Holiday Lights Show (HLS) route through the Japanese garden (lower path) will add a nice new dimension to this event. The shot below shows the 'Bloodgood' Japanese maple (Acer palmatum) with a more intense, purple-red fall color and in the distance is the yellow/orange fall color of the three-flower maple (Acer triflorum). That garden continues to be the most colorful this late in the season.
Thankfully we had some of our best garden volunteers today with Eva (above) and Kay (below) continuing their onslaught of the shade garden with perennial cutting and leaf collection. The ladies were working around a lot of our HLS lights and displays and continue to do a fine job. Ron K. continues to collect leaves in the woodland walk garden as they accumulate. He left us a good sized pile! We'll still have a solid three weeks of garden work this month to catch up with late leaf drop and areas that need another round of tidying. Vern was in to finish up his bench lettering project and helped process luminaries with Pat M.. Vicki and Steve came in for a couple of hours and finished up the large candy canes seen further below. Dr. Gredler did his mowing rounds and shredded fallen leaves as he went along. Dick H. was in to help Pat with the luminaries as well and also finished cutting our aluminum supply for plant labels. We also saw Chuck S., Mary W. and many others.
'Sugar & Spice' foamflower (Tiarella) - perennial
The grounds staff worked almost entirely on HLS tasks today. Above are Big John (left) and Terry who hauled out many displays (like big candy canes...see further below) and took a big dent out of the remaining displays to be secured out along the HLS route. They also put up lights and did other decorating. Cindy (directly below) was the "luminary girl" today and placed hundreds of these along the route. We'll follow up with the lights next week for each of these jugs. Cindy also did some garden clean-up along the HLS route too. Janice had various projects related to the fall symposium tomorrow and spent most of her day decorating in the Japanese garden with thousands more LED lights being utilized. Pat was here for a half day and repaired some lights and continued his progress on the luminary processing project. He's done the majority of these half gallon milk jug luminaries and we're on track to finish these and have them in place next week. I spent the entire day running cords and probably have about 46% of the show done....More progress next week! Further below are additional shots from today.
Note the cool reflection in the water (sunken garden)
fall color of a serviceberry (Amelanchier lamarckii) - woody tree
'Skyracer' tall purple moor grass (Molinia caerulea subsp. arundinacea) - perennial
fall color of the black chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa) - woody shrub
fall color of 'Popcorn' doublefile viburnum (Viburnum plicatum var. tomentosum) - woody shrub