Tuesday, August 30, 2022

There Was A Mowing

At dusk there is time to go for a walk.

Into the civilized wild.

Aralia cordata 'Sun King'.

Angelica gigas is now homed.

Down to the Great Lawn

It draws me down

To rest and reflect

On the permutations of time

Wandering on paths mowed into the wild

When the colors and texture come alive in the gloaming.

Saturday, August 27, 2022

The Color Purple

Warm up with some magenta Joe Pye

Behold the color purple. Ironweed and Verbena bonariensis.

The time of sky-blue chicory is over when the color turns purple.

Ironweed further down the road with Helianthus maximiliani.

The maintenance gardener roused himself and chicory seeds went flying. Mo betta. A new look for a new season.

Like Ironweed.

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Like Ironweed

Big and tall and purple in a field somewhere waiting for God's children to notice

Ironweed is hard to get rid of when it finds a spot it likes. It puts down strong regenerative roots. Oddly for an herbaceous perennial, bits of it left in the ground will resprout, but it does not transplant well at all. It self-sows.

The last ironweed left in the roadside vegetable garden proper. Plenty more all around. The ironweed had a good year. The vegetable garden is having a terrible year. There will be dried beans and root crops. Somebody is eating all the green tomatoes.

I walked up to the roadside in the gloaming to notice the color purple.

Saturday, August 20, 2022

In A Different Light

After six hours on hold over two days and while speaking with the fourth IRS representative, the phone line went dead. I got disconnected. There was no call back, as if they did not have my phone number sitting in front of them. I decided to give up on trying to penetrate the IRS phone labyrinth. A slow mail entry into the system will have to do. An online option is not available.

I would rather go for a stroll in a blooming meadow than wait for hours on the phone with drowsy elevator music when I get home in the evening.

There are flowering native wildflowers to be seen. The Downy Skullcap, Scutellaria incana, has produced its first self-sown plant nearby.

All three Yellow Wax Bells, Kirengeshoma palmata that I purchased and planted last fall came up to get slightly nipped by a spring freeze while in the asparagus sprout stage of emergence and nibbled a bit by the deer while in the fresh and tender leaf stage. Small, but healthy and alive, I have hopes they will like it here and grow big and strong in the coming years. I did get some flowers. That is a good sign.

Out wandering in a buzzing meadow, I compose a temperate, just the facts letter to the IRS, while knowing my plan to send identical letters to three different offices, Austin, Memphis and Cincinnati, all with their fingerprints on the problem, could introduce a new hairball into the system. So be it. One of them might be the right department.

An error has occurred. Fix it. I would rather be outside with Joe Pye.

The Persicaria polymorpha has reached the same size as the Miscanthus 'Morning Light'. I like to pretend I will have a deer fence one day.

Three identical letters went out in the morning mail on different journeys. Be like Ironweed.

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Just Because

I have been on the phone waiting for an hour and a half with the IRS. They made an error and sent me a bill I have no intention of paying. I got through intake. Now I wait for a call back.

I sent the system in to a process error when I returned the original, endorsed, US Treasury Covid relief check back as partial payment for my 2019 taxes. It is 2022. The US Treasury could not cash its own check.

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Ironweed Bloom Day

I ran out of energy and went to bed before I could finish this abbreviated Bloom Day post on time. I feel the same tonight. I am old. I work seven days a week. I have too much on my plate.

I need to be like Ironweed, tough and durable.

There is a diverse and abundant bloom in the Tall Flower Meadows all across the mountain top. I am low on energy. Joe Pye will have to do. You can visit Bloom Day Headquarters for a whole lot more.

Sunday, August 14, 2022

At Full Height

The paths in a Tall Flower Meadow close in. The blooming color builds.

Two weeks later the Doghobble cuttings are looking good. They should be making roots. The plant's very growth habit is that of a walking shrub.

Collar is fourteen years old and having issues. How long will she last? 

Joe Pye is in full bloom.

In a jumbled chaos the maintenance gardener wanders out to mow open the paths.

To go looking for some order in a free-falling world. How long does anything last?

(It appears Miss Collar lasted six more hours after I posted this. I laid down to take a nap. Forty minutes later Collar had vanished without a trace. Without a sound. I left her in the shade on the grassy drive with the other cats out to enjoy a most pleasant afternoon with the door open so I could hear any commotion. When I woke up she was gone, back to the mountain top forest she has known since birth. I would imagine she had a safe place in mind. I will be shocked if a cat in her condition returns. Miss Collar had a very cozy life for a wild thing.)

Never mind. She came knocking on the front door at 10:15. Next time I am not walking all over the mountain looking for her. Calling her name doesn't help because I am quite certain she has gone deaf. There isn't much time left.

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Random Pictures From A Rainy Life

Rabbits, deer and groundhogs have been dining at the vacant Inn all year. There were some flowers left over. Some extra rain has helped.

A hillside of Cotoneaster dammeri 'Streib's Findling' and red hibiscus where it gets warm. The varmints dine regularly in the Almighty Falls too.

The funnel-web spider on a rainy day.

It has been raining every day on the mountain top. Any stroll that may happen is slow and wet.

Spikenard, Aralia racemosa.

Saturday, August 6, 2022

In The Land Of The Crooked Shed

There is voodoo. Amorphophallus bulbs at full leaf.

A chorus of katydids and crickets sing into the darkness of a wild garden filled with the creatures of the night.

One day I dreamed of a meadow filled with wildflowers. I would like to make a garden like that. It was made real.

The Devil's Walking Stick, Aralia spinosa, came to join in.

On this mountain, cool rains continue in a world on fire. It is a peculiarity. It has been so cool, the production of fine produce has been stifled. The magenta spires of Joe Pye still wave.

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

In A Wet Meadow Blooming

Then the rains stopped. It actually did not rain today and not much the last two days. It takes a while for the Tall Flower Meadow to dry out. Actual sunshine today helped.

I was out walking in wet meadows this weekend where Joe Pye is coming into bloom and liatris is sprinkled generously throughout.

Two flats of Leucothoe or Dog Hobble cuttings happened this weekend. If I am lucky, they will be rooted and ready to plant this fall. I'm not sure how I could over winter them in trays. This is my first real attempt at propagating larger quantities of shrubs since moving here. On Maui it was easy. I grew and sold tons of plants. There were perfect greenhouse conditions year-round.

Rudbeckia fulgida roams the gardens at will. It is becoming clear after all this time which wildflowers enjoy life the most, high on the low spot of a North Carolina mountain top.

There is a big paper wasp nest above the front porch roof. They got ornery after a torrential down pour one day so I doused the nest with a full can of spray. Still there. Still active. That is bear bait.

It's August. The time of Joe Pye.