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November 12, 2009 - Janet DelTurco
Considering its miserable track record, November is doing pretty well this year. Those of us who suffer with borthdays in this generally dreary month do not have high expectations for good weather. I always envied my sister whose birthday is in June, offering the opportunity for picnics on the beach, while mine was usually graced with drizzle, fog and cold winds. But this year we still have sunshine and reasonable temperatures, with things in the garden still looking fairly cheerful. I picked a bunch of roses this week, and the Knock Outs still have buds with the promise of more to come. The Lemon Meringue and Fourth of July climbers climbers still have blossoms, and the New Dawn makes up for a lack of blooms with a profuse showing of rose hips. There are flowers on the deutzia and a few coreopsis showed their golden faces when I ruthlessly cut them back this week. I am almost finished with the cleaning up, and even have my bulbs planted before the finger-freezing temperatures arrive and the ground starts to freeze. I cut back almost all my perennials as it makes it so much easier to get started in the spring. I am trying a new tack with the laverder this year, as my two bushes flourished all through the summer, and I don't want to lose them. I have put tomato cages over the plants, tucked stray branches inside with the help of some string, and filled the structures with leaves. Not packed too tightly, but enough, I hope, to protect the bushes from the worst extremes of temperature. We shall see. So far the plants I brought inside for the winter are doing well. Two rosemary plants on the kitchen windowsill are still green, the bay tree is flourishing, and a big chunk of my fairy garden is covering my desk. Then there are two hanging baskets, one with bacopa and a curly vine whose name I have lost, and one with a beautiful double impatiens, still doing well. Add those to the several ivy and setcreasea hanging around, and there isn't much room for Christmas decorations. Although I am sure I will find some space somewhere. The vegetable garden is completely put to bed, covered in a blanket of mulch and compost, the paths are cleared and the gate closed. The ornamental grasses outside the window here are taller than ever this year, and I look forward to seeing them with their winter snowy decoration. There.....I wrote the fatal word, SNOW. We know it has to come, but I am grateful that November has so far been spared.


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