Saturday, November 18, 2006
Fall is an appropriate name for this time of the year. The last couple of days have been very breezy here and the leaves have been falling in record numbers. I usually keep the mower handy to mulch every few days to keep from getting too deep in leaves, but this year, due to some surgery, I have been unable to mow even once. I had forgotten just how many leaves a tree can produce! Despite the extra work, this is one of my favorite times of the year. ( Yes, I realize I say that with each change of season) The colors have been so beautiful this year. The red of the black gum, the yellow of the muscadine vine, the orange & yellow of the maple and sweet gum, I could go on & on. The mums have added color at ground level and hopefully I can get some pansies in the ground for color this winter. The temperature has been in the 30's this week and a heavy frost and below freezing temps are due in a couple of days, just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.
One of my favorite plants in the yard is another pass-along plant from a dear friend called oak leaf hydrangea. It's one of those plants that looks good year round. The leaves are very large, green and oak shaped, hence the name. The flowers are creamy white and very showy in the late spring and summer and are even pretty when they start to dry out and die, changing to a bronzy pink color. The leaf color in the fall is also very pretty as you can see at right.....but when all the leaves have fallen, the plant has rusty brown stems that have peeling bark that is very pretty in itself. As much as I love spring and summer when everything greens up, I love the look of bare trees silhouetted against the sky. If I were an artist, I would paint the trees without leaves I think.
Nature provides beauty in every season and it is the same with life. The wonder and excitement of youth, the intensity of young adulthood, the satisfaction of middle age and the wisdom and contentment of the golden years. The downside to all of this is most of the time we are too busy to notice the beauty around us.... in nature or in life. It's time to slow down and smell the roses or in my case, rake the leaves!