Autumn In The Garden

Autumn in the Garden is quiet.

The plants and the animals seem to move silently

about the task of preparing for the long sleep.

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As he has done for nearly thirty years,

Mr. Gargoyle watches without much interest as

one final arm of the Trumpet falls aimlessly over his shoulder.

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When the vine on the pergola shows her last bits of new green,

I no longer expect a coral trumpet.

But, as Camus said, Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.

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There is something about the Autumn light

that is somehow softer, older, more forgiving.

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Maturity

That’s what I sense in the plump, ripe fruit of the Pygmy Date Palms.

WisdomΒ perhaps in the letting go.

Not weariness exactly

A kind of deliberate offering up of treasure.

Pygmy-Light

Β Autumn adjusts the lights

with the skill of an artist’s airbrush

on the faces of the aging palm fronds

in the garden.

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On some days, the light is warm and strong through the palm fronds.

It encourages a final tier of new leaves on the umbrella bushes.

When it rains, the leaves turn downward like little umbrellas.

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If you’ve been her long, you know.

My love affair with the trumpet vine is legend around here.

In the spring, her blossoms are deep orange-coral.

By autumn, they are much smaller and a deeper hue of almost rose.

Late one afternoon, I fetched the camera to record what I knew was the last of her blossoms.

It was a lone blossom among ragged foliage and dead branches.

The next day, the blossom was gone.

The wind in the night had taken her.

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Staghorn Ferns are among my favorite Pergola plants.

The base leaves are very different in shape and function.

Their responsibility is simply to hold the fern in place on a tree trunk

Or in this case, to the moss base in the hanging planter.

They constantly grow new base leaves as the old ones turn brown and crumble.

The afternoon sun falling on them always delights me.

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Lilliputian umbrellas.

This is a new variety that appeared this fall.

They have interesting, star-like splits on the tops.

As if they’ve outgown their hats!

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Lantana is the weed-flower that never gives up!

Lucy grew the old-fashioned ones that grew as tall as she let them

and spread their lanky limbs everywhere.

The new varieties are compact often with multicolored blossoms.

I think I don’t appreciate them very much because they are too easy

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When I first saw these seed pods, I thought a weed had grown among the “yellow-flower” bushes.

(You remember the yellow blossoms that sneak up on me in the spring.)

When I finally investigated, I discovered that the yellow-flower bush had produced them.

I was more than a little surprised.

She is still producing her yellow flowers alongside the seed pod branch.

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Every year, I snap a photo of a colorful, yellow Pygmy Date Palm frond

underneath a green one.

Soon, Romero will remove all of the yellowed ones.

I don’t think he understand that’s the only fall color in the garden.

I will have to remember to tease him about that.

This spring I threatened to strangle him if he removed the lower fronds on the fan palms.

I’m certain that he’s got his eye on these too!

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What would a garden post be without Mr. Anole?

The amusing thing about this shot of him is that I had no idea he was there.

I’ve been watching this base leaf because it is so much longer than any I’ve ever seen

I finally decided that it is growing taller in an effort to find somewhere to attach itself.

I’ve been recording its growth every time I think about it.

The other day, I turned from focusing on another plant to snap it again.

When I saw the image on the card, I was shocked to see Mr. Anole.

And, I’m happy to include him for you here.

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These bracts are produced by the Fan Palms.

They are similar to the ones above on the Pygmy Date Palms.

They are much larger with a much bigger base and longer bunches of fruits.

They grow in the most interesting way from a tall sheaf-like stalk that opens to reveal the fruit.

Perhaps, I will post the stages of its development when I think of it one day. Β πŸ˜‰

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The white Nachez Crepe Myrtles blossom early in the summer.

The pink ones blossom much later and have only recently lost all of their blossoms.

This was among the very last of them.

It was hanging by itself on a stray limb that was about to swat me in the head as it swung back and forth in the wind.

I stopped and snapped a photo of it and forgot about it.

I saw it when I was choosing photos for this post.

It’s combination of seeds and little flowers struck me as symbolic of the change of seasons.

so, while its mood is too cheery, I included it anyway.

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I suppose the Sago Palm “blossom” signals the end of summer.

I think it has been there all summer in one stage or another.

Now, it appears to be finished with its work.

I have forgotten what happens to it in the end.

It’s the Mad Cow, you know. Β πŸ˜‰

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My very favorite image of autumn is of Boy when he was three years old.

He discovered acorns and fallen leaves in the garden at the old house.

He was delighted to pile mounds of them in a big steel fire pit.

I laughed when he came running to show me the leaf in his mouth.

Of course, the adoring Granny snapped a photo for posterity.

Happy Autumn and Happy Snapping, Friends!

109 Comments on “Autumn In The Garden

    • Aw, you warm an old granny’s heart, dj. I adore that little fellow, as you can see… Chuckle. And, I love sharing photos of the inhabitants of my little garden too! Thanks for stopping to visit! I appreciate that. I really do.

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    • Thank you very much, gillsn. I’m always delighted to share my view of the garden! I appreciate your visiting with me and taking the time to comment. πŸ™‚

      Like

  1. Your words paint such exquisite pictures George! The gorgeous images are added bonus. What a delight it is to be walking around your garden with you again. And meeting Mr. Anole πŸ™‚

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    • Thank you, Madhu! It’s good to see you, and I’m happy that you enjoyed our little walk. πŸ˜‰ It’s autumn here so fewer flowers are blooming, but there is always something going on in the garden. Rita loves it this time of year since the temperature is cool enough for her. Even little Cheeky is enjoying it too. Thank you for stopping by! πŸ™‚

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  2. You blew my mind off with your first shot (gargoyle :D), and most of the gallery leaves me breathless too – you have a knack for capturing leafy green things πŸ˜€

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    • Thank you, Paula. I love leafy green things. And I spend a lot of time looking at them too. I particularly like the palms and the Giant Philodendrons. They are ancient plants with very interesting growth habits and structures. I appreciate the visit to the garden! Glad you enjoyed it. πŸ™‚

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    • Thank you very much, Fly Fisher! I’m glad you came to visit, and I’m happy that you enjoyed the garden photos. I like your gravatar very much. It’s such a soft and handsome portrait. Natural light. And downright friendly smile too! πŸ™‚

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  3. i really enjoy all these shots, very nice work and they make for some great reference to but … gargoyle for the win πŸ™‚

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    • Thank you, Alex! Yes, Mrl Gargoyle would, of course, be your favorite. πŸ™‚ He’s been with me for a very long time, and I would sorely miss him if he sneaked away to guard other gardens! I am looking forward to future posts from you! Thanks, too, for dropping by to visit us.

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  4. This is the MOST delightful, beautiful post! I wouldn’t know where to start, but I appreciate your eye, and your mind, and your love of this green world. Mr Gargoyle, the anole, and Boy are wonderful companions, and in between, all those textures and colors, so sensitively rendered. Like I said, delightful!

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    • Thank you very much, Lynn. I am happy that you enjoyed the walk through my garden. I just visited your post about the botanical gardens. Your use of light amazes me. The images tell me that you love the seasons too. Everything that grows inspires souls of the earth. You are “there” in your images, and I smile when I see it. πŸ™‚

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    • Hi, Suzanne! You know, I have no idea where these anole lizards go in the winter. I don’t see them much then. I call all of them “Mr. Anole”, of course, since they all look exactly the same. I do see some smaller ones in the spring. They are delightful little things. One got on the hood of my car once. I noticed him as I drove down the street so I stopped at a house where a man was working in his yard. When I scooped him up and took him into the yard to let him go, the man glared at me and didn’t say a word. Can you imagine? What a grouch! I chuckled to myself since there’s no way he caught Mr. Anole! I would be delighted to have a hundred Mr. Anoles dropped off at my house. They eat mosquitoes! I loved the engagement photographs! πŸ™‚

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      • OOOOOHH! I want some…they can eat my mosquitos anytime….Just like you George to rescue a Mr. Anole πŸ™‚
        Glad you enjoyed the engagement photos:)

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    • Are you available for adoption, Lorna?

      Chuckle… Chuckle…

      You make me feel so good about my efforts. As you know, I am not a photographer so I am humbled (as they say) by your appreciation of my efforts. I do enjoy snapping pictures. It is something I can do for me old soul. πŸ˜‰

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    • Ah, Joshi, you confirm my best hopes for my pictures. As you know, your images are the gold standard for me. πŸ™‚

      Thank you for visiting with me in the garden!

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    • Thank you, Alessandro! You generous comment is a great start to the week for me. πŸ™‚
      If I can please you with my efforts, that makes me happy.

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    • Thank you, Andy. I am happy that you enjoyed it. I wonder where you are off to these days! I have to find out. You are always so kind to visit me. I really do appreciate that, Andy! πŸ™‚

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  5. Pure poetry George … ready and viewing has lowered my blood pressure significantly … thanks … it’s cheaper than those little pills I take each day. And … from reading this we all now know that you live in a botanical garden. Eden. D

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    • Thanks, Farmer. Watch the magic on the farm and pet the dog. That works according to the evidence. It is so beautiful there. I know from your photographs. There is inspiration all around you. I think you have the best of all worlds right where you are, D. I really don’t live in a flower garden. You’d have to look carefully among the green to find blossoms now. The spring will bring them all back though. A visitor asked if I could post a panorama of my garden. I could do it if I could fly. The arrangement doesn’t allow for that, but I might photograph the areas where the plants grow when I post photographs of them. I am becoming the flower lady here. Chuckle. I never imagined that. It amuses me. I really must get off my behind and find something of interest outside my hermit house. I appreciate your encouragement, D. Thank you.

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    • Thank you, Carissa. I appreciate that. Autumn is more significant to me now that I am old and have time to watch the changes. I never liked it when I was younger, but it’s growing on me! πŸ™‚

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    • Ah, you are such a sweet boy. Keep this up and I’ll have to put you the will… πŸ˜‰

      I really do appreciate your encouraging words, Kenn. And, I am happy that you enjoy my pictures. I really am.
      I’ve neglected you for awhile. I’m coming over right now before dinner!

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  6. I love your autumn, George. And I can see why the trumpet vine would be a favourite. They are all beautiful shots – I really like your colour and composition.

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    • Thanks, Ricard. What I do is kind of folksy, but there is a part of me that really is folksy! πŸ™‚ I enjoy the plants in the garden now that I have more time to observe them. I used to be something of a gardener, but I don’t tend this one. My elderly mother used to roll along in her wheelchair to direct the planting and keeping of the garden at the old house. She enjoyed the garden as long as she lived. I came back to it now that I am old. Chuckle…

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    • Of course, you’d like Mr. Gargoyle. He’d like you too, I am sure. Mr. Boy had a pacifier mouth back then, but his new teeth meet in the front, thank goodness. I was amused by his delight in the acorns and leaves that autumn. Ah, babes… Thanks for dropping by. πŸ™‚

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    • Thank you very much, Chrisstov. And thank you for visiting and taking the time to leave such a nice note. Please come back to visit us in the garden soon! πŸ™‚

      Like

  7. Beautiful pictures. And I especially liked the sun coming through the green leaves and the seed pods. Your view of autumn is intoxicating, George.

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    • Thank you, Shimon. I love the afternoon sun too. It does magical things to the plants as it shines through the palms. I never liked autumn very much although the tree color in North Carolina is spectacular. Now that I am old, I find many joys there that I never realized when I was young and rushing through life. I know you are enjoying your visit with Janne and Georgia. I remember the photos of you and Georgia on the sofa from before. Her home feels warm and inviting. You are fortunate to have such good and loyal friends. Enjoy your new home too. I wonder what Nechama will think of it. πŸ™‚

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      • Actually, you got right to the most critical issue. The new neighborhood is more stylized.. and we’ll have a well manicured park right behind the house. So I am a bit worried about how Nechama will take to it all. Hope it goes well.

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        • Well, I doubt that it will be as interesting for her as the old neighborhood was, but she will find new adventures there. Cats are “alley dwellers” in their souls, I think. That’s the characteristic I like so much about them. They are mysterious and discriminating, elegant and earthy. I hope you and Nechama, too, will be happy in your new home. You and I are very different in that way. I feel at home wherever I can drag my “stuff” that I love along with me. I read somewhere once that home needs only a nail on which to hang one’s coat. Perhaps, that is true. But, we love being surrounded by familiar walls somehow. Don’t you dare to leave here ahead of me, Shimon!

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    • Thank you, Linda! I’m glad you enjoyed it. I love everything that grows and blossoms here in my hermit’s garden! πŸ™‚

      I appreciate your stopping by and leaving such a nice comment too. Every time I see your gravatar, I smile at that gorgeous little girl!

      Like

  8. What beautiful commentary and photos – compelling as always! πŸ™‚ Have you ever posted a more panoramic shot of your garden? Would love to see how everything mingles together. πŸ™‚

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    • You know, it isn’t possible to take a panoramic shot of the garden. I thought about that. The best I can do is to take shots of the area as I walk around the property. The house opens into an outdoor room that is screened. The outdoor room opens into the pergola that is connected by a slate walk about eight feet from the outdoor room. My daughter designed the garden to completely surround the outdoor room and the pergola so it is in a semi-circle, sort of. There is no view of the entire garden from any point in it. Actually, the garden covers the entire back property of my house which is the size of a regular city lot. It is connected to her back garden by a walkway. The properties are joined into one. However, you’d never know that it is here if you passed by the street. I will try to give a better notion of how it looks altogether in a post. Thank you for the suggestion. I’m glad you enjoyed the visit! πŸ™‚

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  9. BeautiFALL scenes around your garden. Mr. Gargoyle looking so sweet & appreciative of his surroundings.
    Lucy looking good too & so is Mr. Anole. Lots of good friends hanging out at your garden I see. And – nice ending with a pictures from the past of “the boy.”
    (That’s what we call our son too sometimes).

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    • Hi, Rosy! I’m glad you stopped in to visit the garden with me. I was surprised to find Mr. Anole on the leaf. Apparently, I snap without actually looking at what I’m snapping! Just when I think he’s gone away, he pops up again to surprise me. I have no idea where he goes in the winter since I don’t see him then. Haha! Boy with the leaf in his “pacifier teeth”. The new teeth did come in so that he could close his front teeth! He was some kind of excited to discover all those acorns and leaves. Thanks, Rosy!

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  10. Indeed, it is quiet, Autumn in your garden. What a pleasure it is to visit. I enjoyed your thoughts about the softer light of Autumn and the letting go–notions you have captured so successfully with your images here. That first shot of Mr. Gargoyle with the Trumpet vine draped over his shoulder is striking (although I can’t seem to pinpoint what it is that captivates me so, despite sitting here for a good while trying–it’s something about that rich green of the leaves bringing life to the stone…). I’m fascinated by the bracts and the pygmy date palms. There is something “just right” for my eyes about the light in the photograph of the bracts of the Fan palm (actually, it’s the same for the shot of Mr. Gargoyle–there is a calming sort of balance and consistency to the light… do you see it, too?). What a nice surprise, the photo of Mr. Anole. I love that photo of Boy. What an interesting photograph, too, of the remains of the Sago Palm blossom! I can imagine going crazy with a macro-abstract with that. πŸ™‚

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    • I am delighted that you liked so many of my photographs. Yes, I think it probably is the balanced light on those images. The Pygmy Date Palm fruit and the Fan Palm bracts fascinate me too. I never knew palms until we moved here. They’ve somehow worked out living well. There is something ancient about them. The Queen Palm’s trunk and the fruit that she bears are really fascinating. I have to search my palm tree images to do a post on that. The palms are the most ignored of trees, I think. I don’t quite understand that. I had no idea that Mr. Anole was on that leaf. He hides well. And, of course, I can’t see either. I really do enjoy him when he shows himself. And, yes, you would have a great time with that Sago blossom. It is among the strangest of the plant reproduction things I know about. There is the male of the species that produces a pine cone kind of “blossom” that is nothing like this one. I’m assuming that’s the case since both plants are identical looking.

      Thanks, Lemony!

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  11. I love to scroll down slowly through your posts, immersing myself in your delightful gardens and hearing you tell me the stories behind your photos, always sad when I get to the end….always look forward to seeing Mr Anole make his appearance, whether he or you knew it or not.

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    • Hi, JS. I’m glad you enjoyed our walk. That is about the nicest thing anybody has said to me about my blog posts. That’s what I try to do here. Just walk along and tell my guests about the stuff I see every day. I’m delighted that you enjoy it! Thank you so very much! I will tell Mr. Anole when I spy him again.

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  12. Your garden posts are so captivating. The photographs are beautiful and your commentary is very educational (I’m always trying to learn things while I’m reading), but also the first couple of paragraphs read like poetry. I find you a very lovely person.

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    • Hi, WH. Thank you very much for always remembering to visit me. I look for you … as the old folks say. πŸ™‚

      I don’t remember if your grandmother is still here, but if she is, she loves you, I know it. (Huh? did I just string that stuff together? Chuckle.)

      You know, I’ve thought a lot about your wish to have a place in the country. Kelli knows that I am a recluse so she designed a little forest for me behind my house. If you sat on my back porch, you’d never imagine that we are on a city street. You can do that too. She used the entire property behind out houses. She filled it with trees and all kinds of plants. The pergola is no more than eight feet or so from my back screen door. The garden is designed to enclose the porch and the pergola. It’s a quiet place for a hermit like me. A place where the world cannot intrude. If I’m lucky, I’ll die here. πŸ™‚

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      • It sounds like your own piece of paradise! I do love my backyard. I have a covered porch my husband built and a huge oak tree that has to be a 100 yrs old (I always wanted to get a plaque to prove its age) I just wish I had your skill with the plants – there I falter. And your right, George, paradise can be had if you have the will and imagination for it. (big smile from me)

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  13. Beautiful autumn images, George. What a cute pic of your boy with the leaf in his mouth. πŸ™‚ Those gorgeous pink blossoms are my favourite. πŸ™‚

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    • I have the white ones and the pink ones around the house because they are smaller trees and provide nice cover in the summer … and I do like the blossoms. I like them now that the new varieties don’t harbor that awful mildew that ruined the blossoms on the old fashioned ones. Boy still had his pacifier mouth which made his front teeth not meet! (Was that even a sentence?) His two eye teeth are holding the leaf. He looks normal now, of course. I was amused to watch him discovering acorns and leaves. He’d never paid attention before that year. Thanks for stopping by. You are so very loyal about that! And I appreciate it. πŸ™‚

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  14. Beautiful photos, George…and wonderful words, as well….I can almost feel a gentle touch on my shoulder or arm, like you’re standing there telling me all about it…your words laced with the wisdom of years and understanding, of having been there…and now knowing….. Wonderful…thank you, friend, for sharing your garden with me today. πŸ™‚

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    • Thank you, Scott. Somebody asked if I could do a panorama of the garden. It’s a “Secret Garden”! I’m sitting right in the middle of it. If I were a bird, I could fly over and give her a top view. Chuckle. I did walk around from my porch door along the path behind the pergola to the other side of the garden, but I couldn’t figure out a way to give anybody a sense of it. Maybe, I’ll walk and snap what’s in front of me. A kind of dog’s eye view. Thanks for your words, Scott. You are always so kind. I wish you could come on in the back door and sit with me for coffee one morning. It’s peaceful here under my little private forest cover. Kelli is a dear girl for designing this quiet refuge for her old mama. πŸ™‚

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  15. Oh my! what a beautiful Autumn post. You guys make me ache to be there with you enjoying all these. And you do have such a adorable grandson, well judging by this photo; A handsome young chap πŸ™‚

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    • Hi, Celestine! I wish you were here to sit on the back porch and look into the garden with me. It’s quiet there and peaceful. Although my house is on a city street, the whole back of it is my secret garden. Nobody would suspect that it’s there. A hermit’s garden! The world just goes on by my door and I don’t see it, thank goodness. πŸ˜‰

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    • Hi, Linda! I smile to read that you smile! πŸ™‚

      I love it when people actually enjoy visiting with the parrots and me. I like the seasonal changes in the garden. I used to hate the fall and winter because little grew there. Now, I see it all differently, I suppose, since I am old. The spring is only months away and the plants need a rest too!
      Thank you for visiting today and stopping to make me smile.

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    • Hi, Jo Nell. I’m glad you like the stuff in my garden. The temperature is supposed to drop noticeably tonight. I’m not much into cold weather anymore, but I hesitate to lament too much when I remember how hot it was this summer. If you’ve posted recently, I missed it. I’ll be around to check. I am enjoying the porch with Rita and Cheeky now that it is a bit cooler. Thanks for stopping by. πŸ™‚

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  16. WOW!! Your plants look absolutely great. Things really have grown since I saw them I think. I have never much liked Fall because things began to die but your post makes me think I might look at it a little differently. The photos are wonderful, of course.

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    • No, I really don’t imagine that they’ve grown that much. The trees are taller, of course. I never liked fall much either, but I’ve found things to like about it now. I guess we’re getting older! You have to come for a visit soon. πŸ™‚

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  17. Reblogged this on FATman Photos and commented:
    George Weaver is an American lady who writes about her parrots, and about the various contents of her garden. I very much enjoy her photos, and I’m simply enthralled by her delightful writing style. I think the post here simply exquisite – I hope you enjoy it! FATman

    Like

    • Thank you very much for re-blogging the post, Adrian. I am happy that you enjoyed our little walk through the garden. I do love the plants and tiny animals that live there. There is always something exciting going on underneath the leafy covers! You are kind, Adrian, and I appreciate your support!

      Like

  18. George, I can only say that this post is stunning! Your photos are excellent but, equally, the way you write about these simple pleasures is just wonderful, I can’t get enough of it. The way you write reminds me very much of a film about an old trapper in the Mississippi backwaters – I think the film was called The Last River Rat – you write just as he speaks, and I am enthralled.

    Because this post is so good, and because I’d like to help spread your gems to a wider audience, I’m going to reblog this on FATman Photos.

    Take good care of yourself! Adrian

    Like

    • Ah, Adrian, you make the effort worthwhile. Unfortunately, I struggle with this kind of posts. I have entirely too many photos! I smiled about the River Rat. You’ve hit on something that is very real, I think. I grew up in a rural community in the American South. I think like the River Rat still, I suppose. When I went off to university, I had no idea about the rest of the world. You should hear my voice. If you’ve ever heard an actor portraying a southern sheriff, you know my voice. πŸ™‚ Thank you so very much for your kindness, Adrian.

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    • Thank you very much. I am happy that you like Mr. Gargoyle. A friend gave him to my thirty years ago. He’s watched over my garden every day since. He is a concrete garden statue. πŸ™‚

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  19. Autumn is such a good time for photography with so many conflicting colours… the problem here is that the spring has only half sprung and a total lack of rain has the plants wondering if they should grow or wait… these are lovely photos of what is obviously a wonderful garden…

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    • We don’t have much color in the foliage here. I grew up in North Carolina where the autumn tree color is amazing. Here, I take what I can get! I’m glad you like the pictures from the garden. Thanks, Rob!

      Like

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