Sunday, August 14, 2011

Summer's Epilogue - August GBBD

Black-eyed Susan, Rudbeckia fulgida var. speciosa
There are those that believe that flowers and plants feel, communicate, and even, speak. They speak in a language perhaps only a gardener can understand. Blooming plants obviously speak loudly and clearly with their colorful and textural flowers. What are they saying? 'Here I am!' or 'I am beautiful!,' perhaps. Their blooms speak to insects, to animals, and to people, saying various things that would seem appropriate to each.

Knock-out roses
They also say different things at different times of the year--speaking other words in spring than in summer or fall, depending upon their seasonal stage of development. At this time of year in my garden, they are speaking their Summer Epilogue, a last word before the preparations for fall.

Black-eyed Susan, Rudbeckia fulgida var. speciosa
Many summer blooms have gone or are going to seed. Even in their shedding of petals there is a beauty in the changing hues and growing seedhead. The singed edges curl up to give that last dance of shape and color.

Echinacea purpurea, Kim's Knee High
Some have chosen to wait for their epilogue, still transforming colors from white to pink to burgundy or white to green to green/pink. They take their brush and outline the edges to display a subtle surprise.

Hydrangea paniculata 'Vanilla Strawberry'

Hydrangea paniculata 'Limelight'

Hydrangea paniculata 'Limelight'
Some are reaching their peak of color, waiting for this time to shout a vibrant burst into the sky.

Crape Myrtle





Mandevilla, Yellow

Caladium, 'Postman Joyner'

Penta variegata
Even the night bloomers are reaching their peak, sending out multiple blooms with heavenly fragrance.

Moonflower, Ipomoea Alba



The annuals are at their best at this time of year--full and lush.

Impatiens
The warm weather crops are slowing their production but are still sending out lots to pick and eat.

Tomato, raspberry, okra, pepper, squash
By this time, I am beginning to adjust to the changing of flowers to seed. I look forward to the cooler weather to come with a host of other colors of nature to cherish. I begin to welcome the end of the summer garden and the beginning of the autumn garden. Time slows a bit and there is less to do to maintain the garden but more to do to change or start a bed and to prepare for fall.

It is Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day over at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her to see what other garden bloggers have blooming.
©Michelle A. Potter

82 comments:

  1. What an enjoyable post ... great read and wonderful photos. Over here in the tropics we have plants that speak all year round and never seem to shut up really! Lol! I'm thinking of plants like the Hibiscus shrubs and the Pentas. Love that shot of Crepe Myrtle. It's definitely saying 'Look at me, I'm fabulous!'

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  2. Happy belated GBBD! I am so jealous of your beautiful crepe myrtle. I have two in my garden here in CT (Zone 6, which is pushing the northern edge) and while they grow they don't seem to flower. Last year I had three flowers between the two of them. I do love the coppery shading on the leaves and the fall color but I think I need to plant them both in a mixed bed rather than give them a starring up-front place like they have now.

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  3. happy gbbd! rudebeckia is hard to beat for summer color.

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  4. A beautiful post and beautiful flowers! I love your moonflower and can only hope that I will see blooms from mine this year. Happy Bloom Day!

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  5. I enjoyed your post about the flowers speaking to us and to nature's creatures. I also enjoyed your lovely garden.


    Happy Garden Bloom day.

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  6. Such an enjoyable post and good read. Your different blooms and gardens are lovely on this GBBD!

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  7. A lovely garden that has showed it's lovelies for most of the Summer but now has started to sleep for rest is sweet till another time.
    I really enjoyed your post about our plants talking to us.

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  8. I'm forever talking to my plants, so it makes sense that they'll talk back!
    I'm not sure where I wandered into here from, but I'm glad I did. I've had a lovely time readiing your back posts - and learning how to dry my bumper crop of tomatoes too!
    Thanks for a great blog :)

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  9. Summer's epilogue is a good title. I feel like we've finished the main story of summer, and now is just the bit of extra. Though the crape myrtles put on a great show and the black eyed susans do too. I've always liked black eyed susans, even before I was gardener.

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  10. What a stunning display! Your garden is looking FANTASTIC! Love the Crape Myrtle.
    Happy GBBD :)

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  11. Your photos are lovely, as always. My GBBD post does not include moonflower photos since the rain took care of todays moonflowers before I could get the camera to them. Don't you just love those huge, pure-white blossoms ... and thier subtle, unique fragrance?

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  12. @greenapplesgarden.com Thanks, Donna. I thought it was appropriate for the season.

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  13. @Bernie Thanks, Bernie. There are a few plants that seem to speak louder than others around here as well. I wish the weeds would quiet down a bit. :)

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  14. @Debbie/GardenofPossibilities That is disappointing. I have the large one you see in the photo, and then I have three other very small ones. The small ones have very few blooms, but I hope as they grow they will have more and more.

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  15. @dorothy Thanks, Dorothy. I love my moonflower...I plant a couple every year.

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  16. @Vetsy Thanks, Vetsy. I am so glad you enjoyed it...thanks for visiting.

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  17. @Lola Thanks, Lola. Autumn is coming, and the plants are readying for its arrival.

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  18. @Nutty Gnome Me, too! I talk to the animals, the insects, and the plants. Thanks, N. Gnome, I am so glad you enjoyed your visit.

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  19. @ryan Just when my favorites are fading, the black-eyed susans pop up and give the garden some more shine. They are such a joy. Thanks for stopping by, Ryan.

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  20. @joene Yes, Joene, I do enjoy them very much. I had to write myself a note one day to run out there after dark to catch those blooms. I was lucky that there were three of them. Thank you for your kind comments and for stopping by.

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  21. The yellow madevilla is a beautifull shape and looks as if it is just about to fully unfurl. I presume that is growing outside in your heat wave?

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  22. I can't believe just how good your garden looks at this time of year - mine has really gone over with not much to show at all. Lovely pics.

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  23. All your blooms are lovely but I really really like your Moonflowers. I grow them and watch them open every evening, just love it.

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  24. Wonderful to visit your blog again. The blooms and veggies look marvelous. Ours are still going strong up N and so are the weeds and maintenance unfortunately for me. Oh well it will be cooler for work...Happy GBBD

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  25. A really ejoyable post and a superb garden!
    Plants speak in a language perhaps only a gardener can understand... A wonderful sentence.

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  26. i love love your "vanilla strawberry" hydrangea looks really lovely and sounds yummy. lol! happy GBBD!

    ~ANGEL~

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  27. You have pretty blooms in your garden! Is black eye susan similar to Zinnia?
    I like your Crape Myrtle.

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  28. This is a beautiful post. There's much to enjoy still in your garden, and lovey prose to illustrate it. I like the conifer by your front door, your moonflowers, echinacea, and crape myrtle. I enjoyed my visit to your garden today!
    blessings, Beth

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  29. Wow, beautiful. Love that Crape Myrtle!
    To everything, there is a season. Soon it will be time to put away the garden spade and get out the winter reading!
    Happy GBBD!

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  30. Beautiful! The moonflowers are glorious and I really like the group of plants with the impatiens. Happy GBBD!

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  31. @Janet Thanks, Janet. Yes, it does very well out in the heat.

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  32. @elaine rickett Thanks, Elaine. A lot of it has gone to seed.

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  33. @Donna Thanks, Donna. The garden chores are slowing a bit for me, but I am creating a new bed which is some work.

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  34. @dona I am so glad you enjoyed it...thanks, dona!

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  35. @ANGEL Thanks, Angel. It is one of my faves as well.

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  36. @Malar They are in the 'composite' family, but they are different plants.

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  37. @Beth I am so glad you enjoyed your visit, Beth. The conifer by the front door is an Atlas Cedar...also one of my faves.

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  38. @Sheri Although I love gardening, there is that time late in Autumn when I look forward to those days curled up by the fire with a book.

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  39. @Caroline Thanks, Caroline. I really appreciate your visit.

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  40. Everything is bursting with color and personality - that must stop traffic in your neighborhood!?! Your gardens are so lush and full - I envy your Crape Myrtle. (The Moonflower is new to me; time to do some research.)

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  41. @Shyrlene Thanks, Shyrlene. I discovered the moonflower about 10 years ago and was taken with its beautiful and fragrant blooms. I grow it from seed every spring.

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  42. Fantastic flowers! I love those black-eyed Susans. And the moonflowers. And the crape myrtles. And - well, everything!

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  43. @Birdwoman I am so glad you liked my garden's summer epilogue. Thanks for visiting!

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  44. really enjoyed this end of summer story,so bittersweet, and that last moonflower photo is a stunner! Happy GBBD

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  45. @Cheryl Thanks, Cheryl. It is bittersweet, but I suppose it would not give us as much joy if we did not have the peaks and valleys in the garden.

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  46. What a great, well written post! Thanks for sharing :)

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  47. @Rebecca Thanks, Rebecca. I am glad you enjoyed it.

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  48. @Susan@Holly Grove They just never disappoint. Sometimes I dream of a huge hydrangea garden...

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  49. Lovely words, and beautiful images. I really must get some Rudbeckia fulgida var. speciosa for my garden, it has such a deep rich colour and elegant shape.

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  50. So many beautiful blooms in your garden in August! My favorite is the moonflower! Do you have it growing on a trellis? Is it in a pot or ground? This plant is on my wish list and I am trying to find the right location in my garden.

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  51. I love using GBBD to have a peak round the world at flowers. Mine are still peaking, but I'm very jealous of your Hydrangeas, - I have another 5-10 years before mine get there.

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  52. @Janet/Plantaliscious Thanks, Janet. And rudbeckia is so nice late in the summer when most of everything is beginning to fade.

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  53. @Karin / Southern Meadows Thanks, Karin. I grow mine on a trellis in the ground. I plant the seeds in spring. You could grow it in a pot. It survives as a perennial in hardiness zones 9-11, so I can only grow it as an annual. Good luck!

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  54. @Claire, Plantpassion I also love taking virtual tours of other gardens through GBBD. Thank you for your very nice compliments and for visiting.

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  55. I love that combination of blue cedrus and the Caladium. Your blushing hydrangea Vanilla strawberry looks so nice and I think hydrangeas are the perfect flower to describe your title.

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  56. @leavesnbloom I tried this placement for the first time this year...it worked out well. Thanks for your very nice compliments and for visiting.

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  57. Beautifully written - you really chronicle this time of year perfectly. What a lovely front entrance you have. it must be a joy to come home!

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  58. Beautiful! Love the shots of the Hydrangea paniculata. The blooms appear to be a wonderful swarm of small, white butterflies. Happy belated GBBD!

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  59. I also love the front entrance -- so welcoming and regal! I also love your moonflowers. I am so envious! Every year, I try to grow them but each year, they just don't want to perform for me. ;( I need some of your magic touch LOL!

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  60. Beautiful post, love your comment on how even the fading petals have beauty in them...so true :-)

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  61. @Wendy Thank you, Wendy. You are so kind. I have tried to make the front as welcoming as possible.

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  62. @Jane I have never seen that visual, but after your suggestion, I now see that...very nice.

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  63. @Cathy and Steve Thank you, Cathy and Steve. I don't really do anything very special to them. I plant the seeds and keep them watered. At any rate...if it will help, I will ask my plants to send some magic your way. LOL!

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  64. That corner of the house with all the plants in front of it - wonderful! Also, I love the image of the Black-eyed Susan (first picture). I do not love this plant, but I DO love your image!!!

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  65. I enjoyed your bloom day photos! I love the way the 'Vanilla Strawberry' hydrangea shades from one color to another. I hadn't seen those shades before.

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  66. I just wanted to stop by and thank you for leaving a comment on my blog earlier this week. I agree with you about the need for annuals. My garden would be a lot less interesting without them. I see you have some nice Crape Myrtles. Where do you garden?

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  67. @Tatyana@MySecretGarden Thanks, Tatyana. That particular photo came out well. Thanks for visiting.

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  68. @M Light This is my first of this variety. The colors are so surprising.

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  69. @Les Thank you for your very nice compliments. The annuals add so much to the garden...they seem to just go on and on. I garden in zone 7A where sometimes it gets too hot and too dry, but we definitely get four seasons.

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  70. I love it that you have a St Francis of Assisi statue. I have a deep love of animals. I volunteered at Best Friends and took a picture of their St Francis statue and it had orbs all around it. It was amazing. It's on my store website and Facebook. Would you like to see it? I don't like to put links in postings, some people really dislike it and I don't want to upset anybody!!

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  71. @Erin Thank you, Erin, for stopping by and commenting on my St. Francis garden statue. I visited your store web site and saw the photo of the orbed St. Francis statue at Best Friends. That is incredible. And I really like your store. Thanks for stopping by.

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  72. wow..your garden is so lovely and colorful..i see that you have vanilla strawberry hydrangea..i am thinking of adding one to my garden..since I have not seen them (mail order)..still skeptical..what's your thoughts?

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  73. @Raji Thank you, Raji, for your kind comments. I also fell in love with the subtle colorings of the Vanilla Strawberry hydrangea. There is nothing that can compare to that first blush. However, since I took those photos, my VS hydrangea blooms have turned brown at the edges. I tried to do research to find out what may have happened...did I do something wrong? Was it the heat or the rain? I could not find the answer. I have a neighbor who has experienced the same, so I am not sure if I am at fault or this is a common feature of this plant. Perhaps it is only meant to be beautiful for a short time.

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  74. Thank you so much for taking time to reply and informing about what happened to your VS hydrangea.I did notice my limelight turned brown soon after the rain..till then it looked really good for more than a month or so..but the rain did make a difference..may be i will wait a lil more before buying..I have left two spots on both sides of my entrance to fill in with my favorite plants..still searching for it.....between your crape myrtle is gorgeous...and your site too...

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'I see trees of green, red roses, too
I see 'em bloom for me and for you
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world'
--What a Wonderful World

Thank you for visiting The Sage Butterfly blog. I enjoy reading your charming reflections very much. Have a great day!

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