Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Last Look at Autumn

I just realized that the autumn screen saver on my computer at work was slightly out of date.

This display was made of coloured leaves
and mystery squash from the garden
It's Christmas already!  Although the late removal of autum photos was partly due to laziness it was also because it really hasn't felt like winter in these parts until just recently.   Just a couple weeks ago the roses looked like this.

We were very fortunate to have temperatures in the double digits lasting right into December.  Those warm temperatures kept the garden active and I was finding flowers in bloom what seems like only days ago.

This photo of the gaillardia still in bloom was taken November 20!
The weather seemed to affect the apple trees as well as we were picking much later into the year.  I recall doing a last sweep of the orchard in late October or early November last season and this year we picked right up to the end of November.

The leaves on the apple trees are always the last to turn colour and drop.  This year as they dropped we could still see apples clinging to the branches.

Over the last month though storms have started to slowly set in, signalling a change in season.  Wind and rain has been pounding and we've lost a couple of trees.  One old apple tree in the back field was pulled up by its rotten roots and toppled.  And our 'watch tree' met it's final demise. 

The watch tree was a standing dead snag that the crows loved to perch on and watch the proceedings in the yard.  Even though the top had already broken off it was still much taller than the other trees around it.

After the high winds the watch tree is no more.

This last week the temperatures have finally dipped below freezing on a regular basis and it seems winter has finally come.  And with it comes Christmas, a new season to look forward to with all that it brings.


  1. This fall has been amazing. We had our first blast of winter today with freezing rain.

  2. Wonderful pictures the fall has been beautiful for picture taking. I so love your watch tree, too bad it is gone. We have had a few very windy days but to pull the roots of a tree out of the ground,but then you did say it was rotten. More garden work, I say. Yes the frost is moving in on us, the pond is frozen over now and we stopped feeding the fish a month ago. Looking for the sun to shine again, Happy Holidays, I have blog missed you these days.

  3. We had a watch tree years ago, although I never thought to call it that. Three crows perched in a dead cottonwood and they always took up the same spots in the branches to survey my yard. But the dead old tree met the same end as yours, and now I don't know where the crows do their watching.

    Happy winter!

  4. The start of winter seems appropriate this year as we've had fall all fall! We keep all the dead trees standing, too, for woodpeckers, etc. Sad to see them fall.

  5. The winds were really bad this year on the trees. Sad to see your 'named' tree fall. I still have a pumpkin up from fall, and you just reminded me to take it down and use it for a pie.

  6. Oh, I love the photo of the rose hips. Sad about the loss of your "watch" tree. Do you do anything with the apple wood? Of course, a tree falling makes me think bar-b-que. Hee! Have a Merry Christmas.

  7. Johanna - freezing rain is tricky, I would rather snow than that but of course that's as I drive every day into town. Slippy roads always worry me.

    Cindy - yes the apple tree was not well, that was obvious, but when it fell the roots were exposed and we could see that's where the trouble was.

    Laurrie - I've been wondering the same thing, where will the crows watch from now? They're never far away and they always have their eye on things so I guess the next tallest tree will have to do for them.

  8. Holley - yes I forgot to mention that, it was the first day of winter. I wonder what winter will bring us now?

    Donna - Your sugar pumpkin post reminded me that I would like to grow these for myself. I'll be adding that to the seed order.

    Tufa - honestly I thought the apple would just go to firewood (which we are always collecting) but hubby thinks there's some usable wood in this tree for a project. Not sure what he has in mind as his projects vary considerably so we'll have to wait and see I suppose.