Saturday, November 7, 2009

My Thoughts on Garden Clean Up

One particular day last week when it was rather nippy out but sunny I was out for my walk about the neighbourhood.  I was dressed warmly so with my mp3 player cranked to my favorite tunes I set out.  I took my small pocket size camera along in case I saw something inspiring.  It is my usual practice to take notice of all the gardens along the way.  At this time of the year there is not much happening in terms of flowers. What caught my eye that day was the garden ornaments that perhaps were secondary to the plants in summer.  They were there as an added attraction but not the focal point then.  Now, they stand out when everything around them is finished.

I belong to the camp of gardeners who do not clean up the garden in fall.  Oh I get rid of diseased plant material and clean up weeds but I do not strip the beds clean and chop everything down to a neat little pile of sticks.   My garden theory is that the plants provide seed heads for the birds and shelter for birds like the Junco who prefers to be in and about the plants on the ground.  The spent plants hold the snow and so insulate against the freeze and thaw process.  They also give me something to look at when the ground is white.  In the spring I know where a particular plant is by its remaining stem.  When I look out at the garden from my kitchen window throughout the winter months I have a reference for my wish list of new plants or extensions for the next spring.  It works for me.

As I approached the front door of home that day I noticed that in the container by the garage door that held Chrysanthemums that I planted in summer had produced their second bloom.  Such as wonderful addition to a glorious day. 


Crafty Gardener said...

My grandson would love that train that hangs in someone's garden. He is really into trains right now. Fall is such a lovely time to walk and admire gardens. I'm like you, don't trim all my plants down.

Lavender Cottage said...

How nice to still have some vibrant colour when everything else has turned brown and died.