The last Monday in October was our final work day at the Kruse Museum. We admired the fall colors of the serviceberries, maples, and smoke bushes. We noted the last great plant combinations—blue ageratum with cream feverfew, pale yellow nasturtiums with a blanket flower. The cotoneasters are beautiful in fall. They have small red-orange leaves with many red berries.
We cut back perennials and annuals, stored garden decorations and generally spruced up the garden for the winter. Our time together in the garden was fun. It’s a place where we tried out plants, discussed plants, admired some and pulled others. I’m sure this winter we will again look through garden books and hopefully find some new ideas for “our” garden.
Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here are some taken in the garden.
The West Chicago Historical Society’s annual Ice Cream Social was a big hit again this year. It was a gorgeous day and people turned out to enjoy the excellent baked goods provided. The garden co-operated fully and never looked better, and everybody enjoyed a great event.
Well folks, here it is October already, and it’s time to shut down our gardens for the winter. All the plants and flowers that we enjoyed so much this summer will be covered with snow in a couple of months.
Being that it is almost Halloween I’m going to relate what happened to me several weeks ago. For those of you who know me, and those of you who don’t, I love Halloween. I decorate my house, and my yard. A couple of years ago a friend of mine gave me several Japanese Lantern plants. I have planted them in several areas of my yard. A number of these plants came up near the entrance of my driveway. One thing about Japanese Lantern plants is that they grow where they want to. For those not familiar with these plants, they have small flowers that look like little orange lanterns. Anyway, I have got these little lanterns growing and the more I looked at them the more I realized that they look like little pumpkins. I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be great if these little “pumpkins” had little Jack-o-Lantern faces on them. My Granddaughter would just love them. So I get my black marker out, and draw small Jack-o-lantern faces on each lantern, all sixteen of them. It was a sight to behold. I couldn’t wait for her to see them.
Not dwelling on what I had done, I kind of forgot about lanterns. That was until, a lady knocked on my front door holding one of the little lanterns in her hand. She said that her and her two children walking by and her five year old son had spied the Jack-o-Lanterns. He had run up and picked one of the little lanterns, and then brought it back to show his Mother. Being a good Mother, she felt it necessary to apologize for her son’s actions. I thanked her, and told her to keep the lantern for her son. She then asked me about the plant itself, and wanted to know where she could buy these Jack-o-lantern plants. She said she was not from around here and had never seen anything like them. She expressed an apparent interest to grow these herself. Oh-Oh, what do I say now? Do I admit that I’m a bit crazy, and spent an hour drawing faces on my plants. Or do I make up some story about how these are experimental plants that are not on the market yet. Now, for those of you who know me, and those of you who don’t, Happy Halloween. Oh, and by the way, keep your eyes open for the new Jack-o-Lanterns plants, soon to be available at your local greenhouse.