With the cooler temperatures that have come about since the beginning of September, sitting in the shady part of the garden is once again a pleasant way to spend some quiet time. Cool is a relative term I suppose. The daytime highs have been in the mid to high eighties with night temperatures being in the mid seventies.
So many of the plants in the garden are enjoying this time of year as much as the gardener. Sitting here, I notice the Curcumas are as tall as the six-foot fence. The Butterfly Gingers and the Pinecone Gingers are nearly as tall. Since all of them will be going dormant for the winter season, I want to sit and appreciate them for all they are giving to the garden right now.
Persian Shield, Forsythia Sage, Shrimp Plants, how many of these will last through this winter's cold spell? Past years have seen these plants going semi-dormant but not disappearing altogether. That is, past years not including the most recent. Oh how I fear the corner becoming nothing but oak leaf mulch as it was this past January through March.
Some plants were added to give the area at least a minimal amount of green this winter. Cast Iron plants are cold hardy and several clumps have been placed throughout the corner plantings. Both Variegated and Green Liriope were planted as a border to define the area. Two Holly Fern were placed within the corner plantings as well. But what about the Schefflera, the Bleeding Heart Clerodendrum, and the Cat Palms? How will they react to a cold winter blast?
Ah, well, this is the best time of the year for this area of the garden. This shady corner has been growing in beauty all summer and now has reached its peak. Seasons change and so will the garden. Everything that seemed gone forever in January has returned with enthusiasm.
The huge live-oak that gives the area its shade will stand strong through the cold continuing to provide cover for all the birds which frequent the feeders and birdbaths during all the seasons of the year.
Providing feeders with fresh seed and birdbaths with fresh water ensures that these colorful visitors will stay around through all the seasons.
Now is the time I have been given to enjoy this spot. The scent of the Butterfly Ginger blooms, the ripening beauty of the Pinecone Ginger cones are only available now, in this season. The buds on the Forsythia Sage promising yellow spires of blooms, the reddening bracts on the Red Shrimp plants are only for this time.