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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Acceptance, Recovery, Defiance - The Garden After A Freeze

It's dark when I get home so I've not been able to do my regular yard tour to survey the damage from last week's freezes.  I'm happy to report that covering the vegetables beds in their plastic hoop houses did the trick (thank you Ed.)  Surprisingly none of the citrus trees seem fazed.  I now have orange oranges instead of their usual it's-too-hot-to-blush-green.  The fig tree and malabar spinach, of course, are not happy and most of the leaves are blackened.  Some of the new sprouts on the roses are wilted.

Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair
The nice thing now is that my yard truly believes it is fall. The leaves on my peach tree are yellowing nicely, the Santa Rita cacti glows pink, and the cedar elm is daring a bit of rusty orange.  In the pond the Chinese water chestnuts are fading; the golden leaves arching over the bog filter remind me of Rapunzel.

The malabar spinach still clings to the arbor.  I'm leaving them put because the black berries will make great bird food.  We use malabar in the summer as a cooked green.  It's the only one in the garden that doesn't get horribly bitter.  I make a nice little quick stir-fry with onions, malabar, and okra in the cast-iron skillet.  Pairs well with the chicken that is normally being grilled at the same time.

Now however, it doesn't look very appetizing and as I walked under it this morning it struck me funny.  It's twisted, blackened vines made me think of a Goth wedding arbor.
Goth wedding arbor?

Not that there is anything wrong with that.

So far it doesn't look like anyone has been snacking on it.  The birds have so much to eat at my house right now - chili pequin, beautyberry, rose hips, and flower seeds - that they haven't started working on it yet.

Just before the freeze I picked all the roses and brought them in the house - knowing that they probably wouldn't survive the low temperatures.  We've been enjoying their incredible fragrance as they sit on the dining room table and compete against Ed's chili making.  Yes, total etiquette violation having scented candles or flowers on the table but in this case I think we can make an exception.

One of the roses out front ignored the precaution.  The pink Heritage rose is blooming and has one other bud on the way.  She is tucked into a bed near a tree and was able to keep away the cold.  A few purple gomphrena accompany her and were dancing for everyone who walked by this morning.  I bowed and performed the de rigueur face plant as homage to the queen.  Aah, blood pressure plummets, troubles evaporate.  This is why I garden.

Ice Queen

1 comment:

  1. I thought for sure my roses were going to lose their buds and flowers after the freezes last week - but, lo, the Caldwell Pink still has buds and still has flowers and looks like it's loving the new, cooler weather.