Friday, October 12, 2012

The colours of fall


For a recovering perfectionist, I think it's sort of remarkable that I love a garden in the fall as much as I do. After all, autumn gardens are full of falling over, turning brown, self-denuding plants.

There are still splashes of colour, like the rudbeckia and the asters, which bloomed just in time for the Big Party. (How did they know?)



The hydrangea are still going strong...



...as are the gallardia that I grew from seed this year.



But even the plants that have officially called it quits and are dancing slowly into wilt and decay have their own beauty, like the dogwood.


And the peonies! Compared to how this plant looked in June this may seem like nothing much, but as much as peonies are my favourite flower in the garden, I find I am pausing much longer to admire the beauty of the foliage in its last weeks of life.


It's awfully tempting to draw a parallel between my feelings about the fall garden and about turning fifty. But cliche or not, there's something to it. From this perspective, the June garden, as fresh and glorious as it may be, seems to shout "Look at me! Look at me!", which seems a little tedious from here. On the other hand, the autumn garden is full of plants that have a different kind of splendour - less show, more dignity. A kind of beauty that factors in the places the bugs have nibbled, the edges that have become crispy, the spots that are bare, and through the calculation that is life, comes to an answer even more precious than short-lived June blossoms.

My garden continues to teach me, and I am listening hard.

6 comments:

jeanives said...

The dripping of the first moisture in months, with a leaden sky adds another dimension. Relief, almost, to stay indoors although it will quickly become tedious as all repetitive things seem to.

Alison said...

I like this. Also, the fall garden appreciates the approach of a long nap! ;)

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

Hello Miriam!! I've been missing your blog--I need to pay better attention! My asters are a new addition to my garden, (a gift from a blogger) and I have so loved a splash of color at the end of the season. I love the lesson and the parallel you drew between life and gardens, and I'm glad that 'we' aren't to winter yet--I'm only 51 after all! :-)

Paula said...

Lovely post.

Michelle Huddleston said...

Such a picture of our "older" selves. Spotty and changing, but beautiful none the less...

Anonymous said...

I like this blog its a master peace ! .

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