Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Cider House Jewels


The peak foliage season here in our part of New England is still several weeks away but that won't deter me from starting one of my fall rituals a little early. Every year at about this time some endocrinological change occurs in my body, some weird pomological hormone is released, and my brain screams, apples! apples! apples!

When I say apples, I'm not talking about those tasteless, waxed and polished red things at the local supermarket.  I crave the real deal.  And so, I begin the first of what will be many treks throughout the foliage season to the mecca of apple orchards in these parts, Scott Farm in Dummerston, Vermont.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Looking Better With Age


I don't know about you but I think hydrangea flowers just get better with age. Toward the very end of the season, their color can change dramatically. To some they may just looked washed out and ready to expire, but I love the muted, faded tones, and the slightly rattier appearance.  For me, this is the best time of their flowering.  On Sunday, I walked around the garden and shot some quick images with my Iphone. To see more of the photos, click on the hydrangea above.
To read more about hydrangeas, check out Nettie's recent post by clicking here.

Friday, September 23, 2011

It's In The Air

photo by Andrea Geesaman

There is something in the air.  
You can feel it.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Dig In- Tips from Nettie at Uncanoonuc

photo by Andrea Geesaman
Ferns for the Garden

Ferns, glorious ferns. They grow now, as they have since the misty days of pre-history, all over the world. We in the north are blessed with a long list of hardy types. Some native to New England, some not. There are so many of them - with marvelous forms, textures, and, yes, even colors. Some for many different kinds of garden, wild or tame. Ferns for sun as well as shade, for wet, merely moist or quite well-drained soils. There are delightful miniatures and magnificent specimens.  Many are lush, fluffy fillers with a glory all their own. None of them blossom. They reproduce by spore not seed, who needs flowers? Ferns offer the gardener such compelling beauty - blossoms aren’t missed. At all. They can stand alone or they can be other plants’ flattering companions. Their often fine-textured foliage magnifies the impact of bold leaves, think hosta and hellebore. Their often soothing colors can be effective foils for bright blossoms, like the classic lady fern - true lily combo. Here the fern also masks the declining foliage of the post-bloom lily, a worthy job in itself. The brighter colors of some ferns can reflect and magnify the impact of nearby blossoms like the maroon and silver of the Painted Fern playing off the pink or red spires of astilbe. Many have rich tawny to yellow fall foliage color. I’ve grown ferns for at least twenty-five years and add more to my garden every year. Here are a few oh-so-garden worthy ferns.

Friday, September 16, 2011

The Common Ground Fair

The Common Ground Country Fair is coming up in just a week!  Largely a volunteer effort, the fair is organized and produced, by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA).  This celebration of Maine rural life has outgrown several fairground sites through the years as its popularity has continued to grow.  In 1996 MOFGA made a decision to purchase a 200-acre site in Unity, Maine as a permanent home for the fair and opened its doors to the public there for the first time in 1998.  Since its inception, the fair has clearly struck a chord with a lot of people.  Around 10,000 people showed up the first year it opened, in 1977! Last year, close to 60,000 came through the gates of the fairground in Unity.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Out Now

When backlit by the sun, the infloresences of this Pennisetum 'hameln' planted next to
Daphne 'Carol Mackie' look like 4th of July fireworks.
To see more of what's out right now in the garden, click 'read more'

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Theatre In The Garden

The Stalagmites (Zak Grace, Jana Zeller, Shoshana Bass and Darden Longenecker)
perform "The Orb"

It was gorgeous New England weather this past weekend when over 700 people enjoyed Puppets in Paradise, a two day extravaganza of theatre arts that took place in the enchanting gardens of Gordon and Mary Hayward in Westminster West, Vt.  Ten spectacular short performances were repeatedly presented throughout the day, according to a masterful schedule that gave visitors a chance to see the entire program.  Each performance was set against a different backdrop in the beautiful Hayward gardens.   And, there was delicious food, wonderful music and a celebration of community!

Puppets in Paradise is a presentation of Sandglass Theater, a non-profit theatre company located in Putney, Vermont that specializes in the art of puppet theatre and performance art.  For more information on Sandglass Theater you can email them at info@sandglasstheater.org or check out their website at www.sandglasstheater.org.

For more photos from this weekend's event, read on...

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Color of Inspiration

Every once in awhile you run into gardeners who are truly inspiring.  This was the case recently when I visited a garden in Pennsylvania that, for the past 48 years, has been lovingly nurtured and maintained by Merle and Beulah Cordell, a couple in their eighties who, by comparison, make me feel like a lazy slug.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Giving It All Back

C.D. Friedrich (1774-1840)

Gardens are so ephemeral.  And you can go ahead and call me a pessimist or a glass-half-empty kind of guy but every time I see a beautiful garden, there is one nagging question that always pops into my head:  What will happen to that garden when the gardener is gone?  Considering all the hard work that goes into making a good garden, wouldn't it be nice to think that if some fate would separate the gardener from the garden, a supremely confident, yet beneficent, garden avenger (yes, maybe even wearing a mask, a cape and a pleasant smile) would swoop in and rescue the whole thing from the clutches of Mother Nature who, as we all know, is obsessed with the entire notion of ecological balance and likes nothing more than to give everything an equal shot at life, including things like weeds, pests, deadly viruses, and even telemarketers?  But this almost never happens. Few gardens outlive their creators for very long. This became especially clear to me last week when I visited family in Pennsylvania.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Puppets in Paradise

Next weekend marks one of the most entertaining weekends of the summer for both adults and children.  If you like beautiful gardens, creative theatre arts and delicious food then this event is for you!

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