Saturday, January 26, 2013

Autumn Photos

Each year I am delighted to see the bold blooms of sunflowers arrive but it's bittersweet as I know they are the beginning of the end.  The large flowers don't last long before they form seed and are pillaged by swarms of bluejays.



I suspect they are a much needed meal before the start of winter.

I'm not sure why but fall also brings with it large numbers of spiders.  They seem to be in overdrive at that time of year, spinning and spinning. Are they too grabbing one last meal before the winter season arrives? 

 

Also working hard are the bees.  Late blooming sedum provides a last opportunity to collect pollen before the garden fades away for the season.




By Halloween the garden has completely lost its summer lustre.  Instead I'm usually focusing on preparing food from the vegetable garden for winter storage.  I wasn't able to grow my own pumpkins this year but that didn't stop me from carving one anyway.  I bought myself some fancy pumpkin carving tools this year, expanding my horizons in the art of carving.


Not scary but who can resist a cat?

Along with pumpkins October brings the bright colours of autumn leaves.


Which means it's time to think about loading some of that firewood into the house.



Just in time for the chill of winter to settle in.


20 comments:

  1. Your sunflower looks great, I have started to think about this autumn's bird food - my first batch of seeds came in the post today. I bought Sunflower Helianthus 'Claret, Helianthus 'Valentine' and Helianthus 'Vanilla Ice'. Can't wait to see them in flower!

    Your pumpkin looks gorgeous :-)

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    1. Helene, I hope you've had some luck with the birds finding your feeder. Wonder if planting some bird friendly plants like sunflowers might help entice them?

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  2. Oh that frosty nigella....

    One of my most fav flowers.

    Let's look forward to spring, renewal of a gardeners heart.

    Jen

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    1. They are quite spectacular aren't they? Especially with the frost highlighting all the intricate details. I'm starting to just itch for spring lately.

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  3. such a lovely post Marguerite, I just love your cat pumpkin, I know what you mean by bittersweet, gardening is a circle that goes around and around each season leading to the next, Frances

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    1. So true Frances, I think we have to learn to enjoy each season as they pass. Although I do find winter harder, I'm rather eager for spring to get here.

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  4. Marguerite girl !
    I loved seeing this Autumnal? LOL post .. you know me and Halloween .. love the cat! .. Yes I always notice a lot more spiders in the Fall .. they do a great job trapping bugs that could be munching on my plants so I consider them a bonus in the garden .. I haven't grown sun flowers in a while, I would like to have some .. the Goldfinches loved "Valentine" I think the name was .. must look into that again !
    Thanks for reminding me girl : )
    Joy

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    1. Joy, before this garden I never had enough sun to grow sunflowers. Now I can't get enough of them. I bought Mammoth Grey Stripe sunflower this year along with Ruby Eclipse but I'm considering the possibility of adding another - I do love the blooms of Teddy Bear.

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  5. These are all gorgeous, Marguerite. I especially love the Nigella with the frost on it. The photos make me dream of warmer weather...

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    1. Sounds like we're much in the same boat Jodi. I'm really itching for spring to get here.

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  6. Like you, I trade gardening for preserving food in fall. I love your pumpkin carving. When I was a child, I was always frustrated that we could never have huge carved pumpkins like the other kids in the neighborhood; my parents always bought us small ones. Only years later did I realize that those small pumpkins were chosen for the eating qualities -- because they got turned into pies the day after Halloween.

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    1. Jean, I have some sugar pie pumpkin seeds and I have my fingers crossed this year they will germinate and survive. I love carving pumpkins but like your parents, the pumpkin gets cut up immediately following Halloween for cooking.

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  7. Impressive carving skills! I love sunflowers, I found myself lingering over some of mine from past years the other day when I was searching for something else in the photo archives. Perfect antidote to winter gloom. We always get loads of spiders in Autumn too. I have not got around to finding out why.

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    1. I find sunflowers so engaging. You can see so easily with your naked eye all the part of the flower and they attract so much life. Each year I end up with dozens of photographs of these beauties.

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  8. The sunflowers are the harbinger of the end of the growing season? awww. Here in the South sunflowers start blooming in June...and are here all through to the fall. We sure have our fair share of spiders, all season. Next time you look at the seeds in a sunflower, know you are looking at an example of the Golden Ratio. :-)

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    1. We have such a short season here Janet. Seems like the sunflowers just get going and the season is winding down. The smaller ornamental sunflowers seem to bloom earlier but I love the gigantic ones and they need plenty of growing time.

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  9. The cat carved pumpkin shows a true artist at work. It is lovely M. Hope your kitties are staying warm.

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    1. Thanks Brenda :) Me and the kitties have been doing lots of cuddling this week, been awhile since we've seen a cold snap like this.

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  10. I love all of these photos...except the spider :p

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    1. LOL, I need to put a warning on my spider photos. There's more than a few people who could do without them.

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