The End of Summer

August 17, 2012 at 7:42 pm Leave a comment

I can breathe a sigh of relief realizing the end of summer is here as I watch the berries of Callicarpa sp. (Beautyberry) mature from dull green to a soft orchid color.  These berries appear in clusters at each leaf axis along the stems of these soft arching shrubs.  Growing in full sun or partial shade beautyberries will liven up the garden later in the fall as their leaves turn a vibrant yellow before dropping to the ground.

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Another sign the summer is nearing it’s end is the germination of the winter weeds.  Henbit seedlings (Lamium amplexicaule) are appearing in our garden beds.  This native plant will grow throughout the winter with small purple/pink blossoms at each leaf axis along this plant’s square stems.  The seedlings are easily removed from the garden now while still small and vulnerable.

File:Lamium amplexicaule 0904.jpg

My third signal that fall is coming is the deepening colors of the roses blooming throughout Maymont.  With the temperatures slowly declining the roses are no longer washed out by the extreme summer heat and relentlessly high temperatures.  With cooler night temperatures rose diseases can flourish so be vigilant in which ever control measure you choose to maintain the optimum health of your rose bushes by preventing black spot and mildew.

For vegetable gardeners this is the time to begin changing the garden from summer to fall crops.  The Chesterfield Master Gardeners are busy planting the cole crops, leeks, garlic and greens throughout the raised beds and containers that comprise Jack’s Vegetable Garden at Maymont.

File:Broccoli2.jpg

This is a great time of year of renewal for both the garden and the gardener as the temperatures begin their journey back down the thermometer!  Enjoy and celebrate the end of another summer in the garden!

Peggy Singlemann, Director of Horticulture, Maymont

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