The Urban Gardener : Cleaning Up The Dead

Pineapple Sage after a few cuttings on Saturday.

This past Saturday was spent out in the yard cutting back lots of the plants that have turned yellow and wilted, mostly the hosta and iris.  We also clipped bunches of the herbs we had planted and hung them in the basement to dry – mainly the lemon basil. The beds are looking pretty barren now and we prep for winter. This week I’ll be sharing my final posts for the season which wraps up my Urban Gardener feature here on my blog.  I certainly hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as I have. This year’s growing season was our best yet as far as our plants and flowers go. I’m already anxious for next year.

We thought the herbs would die off, but a neighbor told us that her lemon basil and sage come back every year.  So, it will be interesting to see if ours make it through winter and come back next year.

The Sedums are dark red now.

I know I do plan on planting more of the pineapple sage next year because its red flower is still a nice single pop of color in the garden right now.  It and the Sedums are about the only color left and the sage is such a bright vibrant red.  It will look great in the back flower bed this time next year.

As for those Sedums, they are all dark red now.  They are one of my favorite plants because of their longevity. They look like a nice green cabbage when they first come up in the Spring. Their flower comes in early and just looks like green cauliflower through most of summer.

If you check out this post from September 13th, you’ll see they were still pink and white back then, but now as you can see in the picture, they are a dark wine color.  This is a great flowering plant if you want something in the bed that is easy to take care of and comes back every year with little attention needed.

The mums back when they'd seen better days....

Remember the mums I bought and planted in the pots on the porch?  I was so disappointed with them.  They turned brown and did not grow and fill in at all.  I think maybe it was the pesky squirrels that kept digging in the pots, or at least that’s who I’m going to blame.  But everywhere I look around the neighborhood, every house and every business has mums planted in the ground and they look great – orange, red, and yellow everywhere you look.  So, I planted the mums in the ground just to see if they will come back next year.  Lots of people say they will, but I’m not so sure they will in this area.  I guess we’ll see what happens next year.

Lastly, we brought in the fern and mother-in-law’s tongue (Snake Plant) and also dug up the elephant ear bulbs.  As I mentioned in another post, the banana trees have also been brought in.  Instead of bagging up all the leaves from the plants we cut bag, we used the lawn mower to chop them up and mulch the yard.

Hanging on...

This last picture is of two annuals I bought earlier in the year.  One is a hanging basket.  They are still blooming despite the cold weather, but will probably go soon. We moved them to the patio for a last splash of color. The one on the left really dried up and I thought we’d probably lost it back in June or July but I guess it was just hiding.

All around us now the leaves are falling, the flower beds are empty, and everything is dieing.  Like I said, I have one or two more posts to share before hibernation begins.  I’m going to highlight some of our other perennials which are more prominent now that everything else has been cut back.

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