Fall Garden Inspiration

by - October 29, 2016

Frost hasn't hit us yet, so we are enjoying some of the final blooms of the season. Yesterday I was at Lowes, where all fruiting, flowering and shade trees were on sale. I suppose they are past their visual prime, but it is the perfect time here to plant them.

We've been building a shed in the back yard, and the site selection required that we move a blue cedar, camellia and redbud (well, cut down and left for dead). The camellia did not make it, so it seems. I am a little devastated about that because it was a volunteer to begin with. Only in the past three years had we even noticed just how gorgeous it was.

I went on a google mission to try and determine what exactly this variety is. The closest I found was Camellia japonica 'La Peppermint', and there is a nursery at the State Farmers Market that sells them, but they don't label their plants and won't know which is which until they bloom.

Here's an example from Almost Eden.

The alternative that was offered to me at Logan's was "Les Marbury", which has pointier petals and has both this bi-color and red blooms. I took the bait and will be finding a place for this lovely soon.

Another tree caught my eye last night when we took the kids to play at Marla Dorrel Park - Kids Together in Cary. If you've never been there, it's a wonderful playground in Cary off of Cary Parkway and US-1. It just might be the shadiest playground in the triangle with beautiful trees and grasses and loads of camellias that are currently in bloom. The trees that caught my eye were conical in shape with soft needle leaves. I should have known what they were, but we ended up using "Common Forest Trees of North Carolina" to identify these Bald Cypresses. How did I miss such an obvious tree? Well my context for seeing them has been in swamps with the large bases and knees. It turns out they adapt well to a variety of soil conditions and are growing well at this playground. It also turns out they are deciduous conifers. Now I'd really love to spend time learning trees of NC and of course want to plant a Bald Cypress in our yard that is quickly running out of room for trees.

Bald Cypress at Kids Together

Bald Cypress Bark

Bald Cypress Leaves
Link to Arbor Day Foundation's Site on Bald Cypress
Here's a final picture from our fire pit garden. I don't know what the plant is, but my youngest picked it out in the spring. 

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