The Splendor of Autumn


This time of year the pyracantha is beckoning me from almost any window I pass during the day. Woohoo! Come outside and admire my lovely red berries! Yes, well, I’d like to. And today I did. Took a ladder with me and admired their beauty way up close. Thank you!

Not to be outdone, the neighboring privet (an ifey word in my vocabulary, btw) seduced me into this portrayal.

Yes, you are pretty. Sort of. And I am anticipating a flock of robins to come through and gobble you all up in one fell swoop. Any day now. The robins are not charged with the task of pulling up baby privet out of each and every garden I tend. The privet feeds them; an entirely different arrangement, which I do appreciate on their behalf. And I do like their annual visit.

Then the trumpet vine came into view, on its way out, frankly, but still lovely and worth the documentation. Fully. I have almost come to terms with how pervasive it is. I find I must admire its fortitude, but I would not recommend signing up for it unless one has very very clear boundaries (read CEMENT). And even cement won’t stop it as it’s inclined to scoot underneath and come out on the other side laughing its head off. Hahahaha. I still love it for its splendid orange trumpet beauty.

Oh. Oh. But what is this? What is this?? The most precious find of the day. Tiny ladybug curled into the fold of a grapeleaf, fast asleep. Awesome.

Ladybug! Ladybug!
Fly away home.
Your house is on fire.
And your children all gone.

Bet you have plenty of these where you live right about now, right? Might be a different species but, let’s face it, this is the time of year when we gardeners spend an awfully lot of time rounding up spent leaves. Where do they go? Mulch? Compost? Recycling? I can tell you this. Some of them are filling in a few holes dug by one very pretty Border Collie, fortunately in the far back corner of the yard, behind many trees. But one wouldn’t want to step in any of them. No. So in go the leaves. Thank you, leaves.

Loveliness abounds in our autumnal days. There must be a purpose to a celebratory leaving in a blaze of color. “I’m leaving you now, but will return in spring. Don’t forget me.” As if we would. Flanked by blue sky I am made to forget temporarily the cold and wet that will soon ensue.

Go, sit upon the lofty hill,
And turn your eyes around,
Where waving woods and waters wild
Do hymn an autumn sound.
The summer sun is faint on them —
The summer flowers depart —
Sit still — as all transform’d to stone,
Except your musing heart.
~ Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Most abundant in this county is the pistachio, which seems to manifest in a variety of colors, some lighter, some richly darker and the contrast only adds to their beauty.

Living in wine country we are blessed to be surrounded by grapevines, used as often decoratively as for the pragmatics of grape growing. Here is one such lovely vine.

What beauty do you find yourself immersed in this autumn, dear readers?

Love and blessings,
Kathryn xoxo

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10 Responses to “The Splendor of Autumn”

  1. So rich and Beautiful, mom! Thank you for sharing that Lovely taste of Autumn with us! Gorgeous!

    Love you,

  2. Trumpet vine……….so that’s what I’ve been pulling out of the big bed in the driveway!
    We are surrounded by huge, old cedars. Alas, there are few leaves in a natural island garden – I canvas city friends and accept donations a bag at a time because the leaves are such valuable mulch. This weekend, after three days of high winds, we’ll go down to the shore and harvest some of the seaweed from the beach. It’s mulch magic!

  3. Hi, Sweet Antonia, You are so welcome! Come visit! Love, Mom xoox

  4. Good morning, Pondside! Yes, trumpet vine. Sneaky, isn’t it? Would happily share the abundance of leaves if only there were way. 🙂 Seaweed mulch does, indeed, sound like lovely magic! Love the thought! Kathryn xoxo

  5. We have faithfully recycled our fall leaves back into the garden beds & compost piles for the last 29 years here. The earthworms recycle them all for us by mid-summer, in time to add some more. Our Sunday Columbus Dispatch garden page is recommending that folks with mulching lawn mowers simply mow them over. Leave grass 3 inches or so in length. Can manage drifts up to 6 inches deep this way, excellent for the lawn, slow release nitrogen fertilizer. Here in glaciated Ohio we don’t need P or K for our lawns. New garden beds for next spring? Cover the new areas with 3-4 page thicknesses of newspaper (B&W sections) and then pile the leaves there, either mowed or unmowed. By next summer the grass will be killed & breaking down & you will not loose all the organic material that you would if you stripped out the new bed. Instead, you get more from the newspaper & leaves & the mulch between plantings is already there. We also have a love/hate relationship with our trumpet vines which grow in various locations in the yard, all bird/wind seeded. Your pistashio tree is breathtaking. Hugs, cousin Julie

  6. Good morning, dear Julie, You are always such a wealth of information. Thank you for this. These are good instructions for us all. Glad I’m not the only one with trumpet vine. I will think of you now as I pull up the wayward sprouts, knowing you do same in Ohio. Love, Kathryn xoxo

  7. Autumn lovely, dear Kathryn, as is Indian Summer here in Michigan. We are both blessed.

  8. Good morning, Joey! Glad to know you are enjoying a bit more sun before a cold winter sets in! Bet it’s beautiful! Hugs, my dear! Kathryn xoxo

  9. Thank you for sharing that Lovely taste of Autumn with us!

  10. Hi, Steve, Welcome and thank you! Hope you are enjoying your own autumnal beauty! Kathryn xoxo

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