Well we have had a soaking week… a long slow rain slowly soaking in. after several days of rain – a little over 3 inches total, there are no puddles on the ground except where it is paved as the land has been dry for so long, everything has been thirsty. This last “storm” was a gentle nor'easter, the winds were not bad, yet the redbud out front is almost naked. The ground, on the other hand is a crazy quilt of colors as the leaves have covered just about everything and many of the camellias have scattered their magenta petals with the leaves. The mums have faded somewhat and the pansies are buried under the redbud leaves. They will have to dry up a bit before I try to uncover them – again. I took the mower out last week-end to grind up the leaves that had already fallen and make room for the new ones. The sit-down mower just re-arranges the leaves and does not mulch them up. I think it is necessary for the leaves to remain more or less where they fall and disintegrate back into the earth that helped grow them in the first place, so I don’t rake them, bag them, or burn them. I do grind them up into smaller pieces for faster composting and a neater looking yard.
My birthday camellia is covered with blooms. Many of them took a beating in the storm and now the ground is a faded magenta under the bushes. However there are hundreds of buds left. The next to open, a small double pink camellia, has started to bloom. I love its delicate color and beautiful form. As I went out during a break in the rain to pick a few to brighten up the dining room table, I noticed Ice Angel was opening early this year. I only picked one of them as there were so many little busy bees crawling around on the blooms.
The English daisies have opened and their butterflies have arrived, right on schedule.
I am still picking tomatoes and we have had our first serving of yellow wax beans. This morning I picked a very confused strawberry from the berry patch. I thought it was a leaf and wondered where a bright red leaf had come from. We don’t get many red leaves here, so I went over to look at it. Whaddya know? A strawberry! It was good, too… I ate it before I even considered taking a picture of it.
The front yard is full of “butter-butts” at the bird feeders. When it dries up a bit more I need to bring more feeders out. These yellow-rumped warblers will flit around for a few more days, eat a ton of berries and cause the local wrens much grief. My wrens complain about everything, cats, dogs, kids on bikes out on the road… and other birds.
There are still a lot of butterflies on the azaleas and butterfly bushes. I thought the dragonflies were gone, but I saw one this morning.
Did you know that honeysuckle blooms again in the fall? Well, it does here.
This is a rough October for me. My brother and I are selling the Big house up in the Poconos. It is too much for us to keep up… He has lost interest and I really can’t do the steps, and there is no way in or out of the place without climbing steps… and my uncle is letting me stay in his cottage next door which requires only one step to get in the back door or 3 steps for the front. I can handle that. And the Big house is being sold to my cousin so it will stay in the family… but still, I am grieving for it. It has always been there; it belonged to my grandparents, and it has always been a safety net for me, just knowing it was there. Oh well. It is just one more thing I have had to give up as time moves on and the world changes. But it is painful, more painful than I thought it would be. My brain is thinking of buying a mini RV, big enough to keep Hadj happy… I still own a lot up there… I can always just go up and park on it, get my mountain and river fix… or not. Too many ghosts up there… too many ghosts.