So instead I wandered around the farm, looking for possibilities. The pickin's were slim.
I found only a small remnant of last year's October subject, the Aster pilosus, otherwise known as frost aster. Last year there was a swath of these airy blooms around the outbuildings, providing some late flowering interest. But a zealous trimming/weeding this summer by Mr. Procrastinator eliminated all but this small stem that escaped the powerful weedeater.
Ah, to paraphrase the old saying, "One woman's wildflower is another man's weed."
Speaking of weeds, nearby in the butterfly garden, a late Aster-maybe is nearing the end of its blooms. Its blooms are much smaller than the rest of the native asters and despite the photo's presentation, a pale pink in color. I have no idea what type of aster this is and whether it even is an aster--or ex-aster for the experts. The stems and branching habits are somewhat different than the New England asters, and in fact, I thought it was a weed of some sort. It resisted pulling, so I left it alone. Its late delicate blooms make me glad I did, although I may be sorry if it tries to take over this garden next season like some of the other natives.
One of those thriving natives, the New England asters, have completed their show and already setting seed. I did say a while back I was going to keep these from going to seed, didn't I? Oh well, spring will be a good time for pulling unwanted seedlings, and I do like the looks of dried seedpods in the winter garden. Hmm, this reminds me I still need to buy marshmallows for our weiner roast on Saturday.
Before we leave the butterfly garden where most wildflowers/natives reside, I want to show you this photo taken a few weeks ago. It's a Penstemon X (the proper name escapes me now) given to me two years ago by our generous wildflower hostess Gail. It's a spring bloomer, but never before have I noticed how lovely it looks in the fall--just look at that burgundy foliage!
Letting the feet and mind wander away from wildflowers now . . . two nights of frost last week have finally done in most of the annuals. The once multi-hued zinnias are now all a uniform color, in varying shades of brown.
Some annuals are more cold-hardy than others, however. The white 'Snow Sonata' cosmos in the same garden are still providing a feast for the hungry bumbles and honeybees. Many of you have commented on these cosmos in my last few posts, and I will agree that these are definitely must-haves in my garden from now on. I only wish I had saved more seeds from them, but they should be readily available again next year from Renee's Garden
I've been giving a lot of excuses in the past month or two for why I haven't completed all my intended fall gardening chores, and here's one more. I spent many hours over the past several weeks completing this crib quilt. I'm no master quilter--that's my mother's forte--so this piece is not perfect, but lots of love goes into making one of these every few years. This is the sixth baby quilt I've made, each one for a special grandchild.
And did I forget to mention I have a new grandson?? Already a month old, here he is at one day old. Grandma is anxious to get over this icky virus to get some new photos and spend some quality cuddling time with him again.
Thanks for indulging my ramblings this morning; for more informative posts on this Wildflower Wednesday, be sure to visit the ever-enlightening Gail at Clay and Limestone.