Saturday, June 22, 2024

Garden Notes

Garden Notes: Uncontrolled growth

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As to what is happening with the weather, Hurricane Lee’s Atlantic path titillates in the news, adding a frisson of danger to coastal lives and visits. Despite what could very well become a dangerous...

Garden Notes: New chapters in the garden

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Butterfly time — monarchs, swallowtails, skippers, clouded sulphurs, painted ladies, cabbage whites — they flutter, sail, and float above the garden, reveling in the sunlight. Visitors and family have left, or are leaving, and there...

Garden Notes: The mid-August moment

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Clethra scents Island byways, and it is time for the fair — the mid-August moment. Effort and inspiration are on display in hall and grounds! The purpose of agricultural societies and agricultural fairs is the...

Garden Notes: Moving into August

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The heat and lack of rain, compared with elsewhere on the mainland, are almost minor details. We should know what to be grateful for. In the vegetable garden after work, cicadas gently sawing away in...

Garden Notes: Elderberry

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Native viburnum have gone by, but another white-flowered native is in flower. Elderberry (Sambucus canadensis) is one of those plants one might encounter hiking in conservation land, since it is associated with damp places...

Garden Notes: New wildlife in my garden

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Native viburnums bloom alongside the road and in gardens where native plants have a healthy presence. Once pollinated, the flowers evolve into umbels of beautiful blue fruits, appreciated by many birds and other wildlife....

Garden Notes: Summer is really here

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One thing is for sure, even if it is a droughty spring: If there will be rain at all, it will happen during peony season! The recent three short rain events, each about three-eighths of...

Garden Notes: Spring flower fever

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This is the bloom-struck stage of late spring, the joyous and exciting time to have a garden, or to be in a garden. Each morning seems to deliver another delight into existence, and it is...

Garden Notes: Pallid foliage? We await warmer weather

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Autumn olive (Eleagnus angustifolia) and grasses are blooming, and add to oak and pine pollen. Odd weather this spring, it seems: cold, drought, and a pollen storm par excellence, until the weekend’s rainfall. Many flowering...

Garden Notes: Spring’s magic moments

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The graceful beeches along banks of West Spring Street near the Tashmoo Water Works, and down the hill into Menemsha, have leafed out, always part of Island spring’s magic moments. Spring has sprung again:...

Garden Notes: The spring garden

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Gus Ben David and Chameli the golden eagle have been sharing their journeying and learning together for 41 entwined years! The winter was mild, but this spring has been harsh. Temperatures are brisk, but sunny...

A garden note

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Earth Day, April 22, falls outside the usual cycle of “Garden Notes” this year. It appears we who garden are among the remaining protectors of our natural surroundings: wetlands, pollinators, bats, nesting birds, clear...

Garden Notes: Ah, spring

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April: The first ospreys utter their distinctive cry hovering high above, while redwing blackbirds warble mellifluously in the marsh below. Only heard since the end of March in my area, pinkletinks have chorused for...

Garden Notes: A shout-out to spring

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“Daffy down dilly has come up to town In a yellow petticoat and a green gown.”  –Mother Goose rhyme They are a shout-out to spring, which may otherwise be reluctant to arrive here. The earliest miniature daffodils...

Garden Notes: Never say never

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Officially, it is almost here, although spring is never early on the Vineyard. Whatever the signs might be, disregard them! There is usually a big disappointment waiting to ambush the overeager. It is, however, time...

Garden Notes: Where we are

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“As the days lengthen, the cold strengthens.” The old adage is seemingly affirmed. March is in: lion or lamb? January 2023 here was the wettest and warmest one in a while. Although the drought...

Garden Notes: February flowers

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We are far from the stable ages of the Holocene era, and are now firmly in the throes of the Anthropocene. “Who can see the green earth any more/ As she was by the sources...

Garden Notes: Integrated pest management

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Not much winter, so far. The “new normal” action seems to be that it starts later and goes longer into spring. Snowdrops and pansies are in bloom. If we want to change actions, attitudes...

Garden Notes: Winter bloomers

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In a now well-established ritual, I check the witch hazels. I have a small collection of five winter bloomers. Three have been of blooming age for about a decade. This year ‘Jelena’ was in...

Garden Notes: Life’s treasures

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The gifts of Epiphany (Jan. 6) may be expanded to mean, in the wider secular sense, that what we have here on Earth is precious: that we have been given precious gifts by our...