Autumn is official here Saturday, September 22nd partnering with a Harvest Moon beginning September 19th …the cooler temperatures have already begun to make their presence in the garden the last few nights. “Farmers are believed to have named the Autumn Moon the Harvest Moon – because the brightness of the full moon could be used to help with bringing in the Fall crops”. “The Harvest Moon, has been rumored to be larger, but in reality it is just an ordinary full moon”. Although some folklore say differently.
Autumn is the time that fall color can be seen through out the summer ending gardening. Autumn Joy sedum - spectabile: is considered a perennial succulent, that will thrive “in most soil conditions”.
This garden gem is a plant that begins growing in spring, in mid-summer the flower heads begin forming looking like light green broccoli florets which by September begin turning pink until late October – early November when the flowers turn a rusty tone. Another planting that begins to be seen is Golden Rod – Solidago which is from the Aster family (Asteraceae). Golden Rod has been confused with common “ragweed”, which has been known to cause hay fever to some people. Both bloom in the same time frame – but the real difference is that ragweed flowers are light weight and wind-blown to pollinate. Golden Rod has heavy flowers that can’t be easily blown in the wind and is pollinated primarily by insects.
While in the patio this afternoon, I spyed this wonderful alien looking Praying Matis. This is a full grown adult. Female mantis will eat the male after mating – it’s believed the protein from the male helps with the egg development. There are three life stages of the praying mantis. 1. Egg Stage – A female mantis can lay “100-400″ eggs on a sturdy stem, surrounded by a case that will protect the eggs through the winter. 2nd stage – Nymph stage is when the new hungry mantis nymphs emerge from the protective casing looking to eat small insects, nats and each other. 3rd stage – Adult stage, which is a fast growing and molting at least 10 times shedding their exoskeleton until they reach adult size. Thrives all summer by” hunting anything that won’t eat it”. Praying mantis, have a” 12 month life span”.
Yes, the garden is a very special place for you, birds and beneficial insects. Now is the time to give thought to which plants to cut back and which ones to leave in the garden for birds. Consider if transplanting is needed. Mulch – does your mulch need fluffying or more added? Just remember no volcano mulching around your trees. I have a feel more things to attend to on the patio, like move a few container plants into the garage to protect them from the cooler tempertures. Until later, El