Thursday, October 30, 2008

Fall Fruit in Fern Valley along the road

The trails inside Fern Valley are closed for construction, but there are still areas that are accessible along the road. Across the road from the Coastal Plain area adjacent to the lowest entrance are some curiously attractive plants. Rhus copallinum, Shining Sumac, (for its glossy foliage) has unbelievable red fall foliage and interesting fruit. It is a good substitute for the invasive Euonymus alatus, Burning bush. There aren't too many plants that can compete with Butrning bush for intensity of color, but this one can.

Just a few feet farther down the road a few purple fruit linger on the Arialia spinosa, Devil's Walking Stick. They perch geometrically on the pink pedicels. This is a plant that I have always had a fondness for. Its habit is ungainly at best, usually consisting of a suckering clump of unbranched stems that are often unable to hold themselves upright and lean haphazardly in a less than architectural form. Anyway, it's all about the fruit and you can see it this weekend.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Pruning in the Dogwood Collection

Cold rain in the afternoon couldn't ruin a day that started with a view like this. We pruned good trees and removed some bad and dead ones. The day was pleasantly cool and the work was satisfying so it was a good day.

Sunrise on the Firebush, Hamelia patens, a nice Florida native shrub

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Two views of the Wildwood Florida Garden

An unfortunate circumstance, the unexpected death of my mother-in-law brought us to Florida this week. I do believe that irony is a driving force in the universe and while a tragic event was the cause of the trip, the garden has never looked better. Hey, it's only two years old and that includes just about everything except for the Live Oaks. The rains of summer have the grass nice and green and the plants lush. I didn't garden much, just pulled a few weeds and threw down half a dozen bags of mulch but it is beginning to look good.