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Always Waiting

We gardeners are patient people. We are always waiting. Waiting for seasons to turn, for plants to grow, for fulfillment of our visions. I have spent all of September waiting.

Waiting for temperatures to cool down. We remain in the 90s during the day, but next week that will change, according to weather predictions, with highs in the 80s. At last I may get to do some heavier garden chores without risk of heat stroke. I need to transplant several shrubs; I need to renovate my forsythia bushes. And the area by my new woodland path — lots to do there!

Waiting for fall. I want to revel in the colors of autumn foliage. I want to wear long sleeves. I want to open all my windows and let in cool, fresh air. Football stadiums are filled to capacity every weekend, and pumpkins are for sale in grocery stores and garden centers. Yesterday, September 23, was the first official day of fall. Although our weather is still stuck in summer, leaves are starting to change along the edges. It won't be long.Japanese maple leaves are beginning to turn red along the edges.A hint of color shows also in dogwood foliage.The Chinese Pistache leaves are already golden.

Waiting for rain. I think we have had two light rain showers this whole month. Green grass has faded to tan. Leaves are wilted, crinkly, or downright dead. Flowers have disappeared. This, too, is changing. The high pressure system that prevented clouds from coming our way has moved on, and today at last there are fat cumulous clouds overhead. No rain yet, but surely it must come.Here is my 'yardman'. He works valiantly to keep things watered. He is very cheap, but he expects a lot of fringe benefits!

Waiting for bulbs to arrive. I have ordered an assortment of daffodils and alliums. The daffodils will go to the area by my new woodland path, the alliums to the new border in the Lady Garden. I have never planted alliums before, but onions and chives do well, so I hope the more decorative cousins will also flourish. My bulbs should arrive in October. 

We can get caught up in waiting. I remind myself that tomorrow is guaranteed to no one. What I have is today. Today is a golden day in September, warm and rich as buttered pound cake, ready to be tasted and enjoyed. (I've been trying to lose a few pounds, forgive the simile!)

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Reader Comments (11)

I have been reminded recently that is is good to enjoy the moment, no matter how much I want my hedges to grow. I love autumn, we do not have the heat that you do, great to have a fire, make soup, and wear sweaters, so cozy. The leaves at Kilbourne Grove are just starting to colour, amazing to think by Haloween, they will be mostly lying on the lawn.

September 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah at Kilbourne Grove

Poudn cake with chocolate chips and ou ahve me. Used to have that as a kid, and suddenyl your post stirs a memory that washes over me like falling leaves in sunlight on some early October morning! Or, like butterflies stirred up from my passing as they devour the aster blooms.

September 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBenjamin

Too true. I spent all summer waiting for warm weather, with my tomatoes and peppers waiting to ripen. I gave up waiting, and just as I was thinking of changing out the summer beds for fall crops...this weekend, after lots of waiting, we're finally supposed to get some hot weather. We have a few leaves on the big leaf maples just starting to turn, our first hint of fall...and soon I'll be waiting for spring. I have a mammoth project ahead, planting 450 daffodil bulbs. I'm sure the wait will be worth it when they all bloom, but it the meantime, you're right, it's most important to appreciate what we have today.

September 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCurbstone Valley Farm

Nice color on that maple. I need a yard lady in my case. I guess my wife knows that the yard is my domain. I am patiently waiting for that cool front, and maybe I'll get out in the yard and move some stuff too.

September 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJeff

Ahhhh, that simile sounds delicious to me, as I've been battling for six weeks and have conquered a mere ten pounds. I am weary, and between your buttered pound cake and Simply Susan's cheetos, I might not make it through the night. 0

Good advice, though. I'm constantly reminding myself to wait, be patient, I will someday have the garden of my dreams. A little at a time, as we find time and money to accomplish things. But yes, with continual thoughts of tomorrow, I often forget to enjoy today. Thanks for the reminder! Oh, and I can't wait to see your Japanese maples!

September 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFloridagirl

You say so much here about what it is like to be a gardener.
It is is one sense waiting, but in another looking forward, which is good!
Lovely post
Best Wishes

September 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRobert Webber

Dear Deborah, I do sympathise with you about the heat and lack of rain. It seems incredible with chilly days and nights here in England and frequent heavy rain showers.

Your pictures show a golden glow of autumn to me, however, in spite of the temperatures so I am not sure about the waiting I think that the season of mellow fruitfulness is upon you!

Carpe Diem!!

September 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEdith Hope

I too find autumn to be my favourite time of year. Hot casseroles and wooly jumpers. But increasingly here in the UK, we're getting a lot more Indian Summers. This year has been downright confusing, seeming as though the seasons couldn't quite make their mind up, shifting from one back to the other, and it's showing in the plants.

As for alliums- these are one of my favourite Spring bulbs to grow - they are ridiculously easy and provide a wonderful structural feel later in the growing season, after flowering. Make sure to give them some really good sharp drainage, and you really can't go wrong!

September 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRia

Your Chinese Pistache has a wonderful colour, and the last shot with all of the earth tones shows how beautiful Fall can be.

We've had a very cold September with frosts, so while I love the colour changes, I know what lies ahead. I've been mentally skipping forward to spring as I collect bulbs to plant. :)

September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNorthern Shade

Your high temperatures put ours to shame and we still moan when we only have a few weeks. Its interesting that you move plants when the temps are in the 80s we would consider that too hot - funny how we all adapt to different temps.

September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHelen

It has been warm here, too. But now it is raining. I wasn't looking forward to the cooler temperatures but now I actually am. I planted alliums for the first time last fall. They really surprised me this summer. They came up wonderfully and were beautiful. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. I just received my bulb order for this fall - can't wait to get planting. It is so fun come spring (and summer). Can't wait to see yours.

September 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterthevioletfern

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