Hello, fellow readers,
I am thankful for the dormant perennials with seed heads that feed our feathered friends, who will surely leave plenty to fall to the ground and germinate come spring. I marvel over the structure and bark of statuesque trees, more visible now, as the dropped leaves decompose and nourish our dear earth. I treasure the evergreens we can adorn with twinkly lights, the branches of hollies, and other broadleaf evergreens that can be gathered to garnish our window boxes, outdoor pots, and mantels. Plus, the dry hydrangea flowers, stems of butterfly bush, branches with berries, and other garden “leave-behinds” add to the seasonal display. This year’s late growing season, then a deep freeze in the Northeast before some plants went dormant, may have put a damper on our dry flower pickings. Not to worry, though; plants are resilient and will bounce back come spring.
I am grateful for the pumpkins to decorate that can be made into yummy pie or soup and toasted seeds for a salty snack. What fun to watch critters scurrying around hoarding nuts in preparation for the winter months ahead. And the flocks of turkeys that seem to congregate in masses this time of year, perhaps taunting the fact that they will not be on the dinner table. Thank you, deer, for staying clear of my hollies during your fall feeding frenzy with the aid of Deer Out, a natural pleasant-smelling deer spray, and Miss Ellie, who loves the chase.
Enjoy the winter break from pulling weeds, deadheading, and other garden chores while dreaming and planning for the growing season ahead. Meanwhile, we’ll have plenty to chat about while our plants are sleeping, which brings me to my gratitude for your participation and kind encouragement over the years and for The Press for inviting our exchange, which began 285 weekly columns ago. Hard to imagine we’ve been sharing garden dilemmas, delights, and discoveries in this garden of life for over five years! Thanks to all of you, this is proof of the sense of community our newspaper and website nurtures.
Wishing you a joyful time with family and friends, warm memories of loved ones forever in our hearts, and healing love and light for those working through grief, illness, and recovery. Happy Thanksgiving and Blessings to all! Garden dilemmas?Askmarystone@gmail.com