It's hard to believe that Halloween is tomorrow! We had another decent day, that while starting cold and foggy, experienced a nice progression to sunshine and temperatures in the mid 50 degrees F. Fall color still abounds around the gardens. Above is the 'Akikaze Nishiki' Shantung maple (Acer truncatum) looking brilliant in the Japanese garden. This is the time of year when fall color, ornamental grasses, colorful fruiting and showy bark all contribute significantly in the late season garden. It was a very productive Friday out in the gardens for both HLS preparations and gardening.
fall color on ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)
fall color on fernleaf buckthorn (Rhamnus frangula 'Asplenifolia')
fall color on 'Sunglow' vine maple (Acer circinatum)
fall color on PJM rhododendron (Rhododendron sp.)
Our stalwart volunteers continue to be so essential at the gardens on a day to day basis. Above are Kathy (left) and Eva ready to head out in the gardens. The ladies, later joined by Dave, focused on finishing clearing the formal perennial gardens and then worked in the upper Japanese garden for clean-up. Marv (below) worked on his two moss areas which look quite vivid. Kay (second photo down) took a big chunk out of the tidying needs in the Scottish garden which needed her attention. Dr. Gredler came in for some mowing duties and Maury ran errands. Pat M. worked on his other "Tower of Power" for the HLS. The Chestnut House volunteers (third photo down) helped with some significant leaf clean-up with help from Janice. Dick H. was in to run to the dump and helped stake trees for the HLS too with John and Terry.
Chestnut House volunteers (left to right) - Janice, Janelle, Travis, Dawn, Victoria (red vest), Kim, Janelle's mom and Jordan
John (second photo down) and Paul from L.P. Tree Service (www.lptree.com/#/) hung lights all day at the gardens with two of their bucket trucks (see above and below). The guys did a great job which included putting lights on the Parker Education Center. Thanks to John, Paul and Chris for the donated time and sponsoring this event for the 17th straight year! We'll see the boys back next week to finish up hanging almost 500 dangling icicle lights! Larry H. was a big help in running back and forth to help the guys out too!
The grounds staff worked almost exclusively on HLS preparations. As mentioned above, Larry H. spent most of the day helping out the L.P. Tree Service fellas. Janice worked on decorating huge candy canes for placement next week and helped with the Chestnut House volunteers. Cindy continued with her half gallon milk jug luminary project and makes excellent progress every day. We should have those up and ready by the end of next week including the 600 new ones on the expanded route to the gazebo this year. Big John and Terry staked lots of trees for decoration and had a lot of miscellaneous HLS projects too. I ran cords all day and finished up two more garden areas (with many more to go!).
fall color on vernal witchhazel (Hamamelis vernalis 'Sandra')
fall color on Lavender Twist redbud (Cercis canadensis 'Covey')
interesting foliage on the 'Pulverulenta' elderberry (Sambucus nigra)
fall color on 'Purple Haze' hybrid filbert (Corylus hybrida)