Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Slouching Toward Autumn
As Autumn looms, the garden gets, let's face it, round-shouldered with age. The flower clusters of the white hydrangeas, so pristine and proudly upright in July, are now succumbing to time and gravity, giving the garden a somewhat sad aspect on a gloomy, misty day. However, as the flowers of summer slide into senescence, the garden stage welcomes one more set of stars; in a shady garden the flowers of fall are more demure than their predecessors, but more valuable by appearing in the final act. Tricyrtis Ohsumiense, shown below, is the first of a whole lineup of toad lilies, which will end with the exotic blooms of Tricyrtis macranthopsis; it's waxy yellow flowers with red spots usually have to be protected from frost, until a hard freeze in early November brings it, and the gardening year to a close.