Home of the Practically Perfect Pink Phlox and other native plants for pollinators

Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Fall of the Golden Empire


All hail Susan.


She has had a glorious reign. She has smiled upon her subjects.

She was adored by all.


She has provided food and joy for her visitors.

She has been a most benign empress.

Her subjects bowed before her.

All hail Susan.

The Decline of the Golden Empire officially began in the land of Clay and Limestone with the browning of Susan. Her most loyal subject worked tirelessly, but nothing could turn back the decline of Autumn. Soon she will be a memory. Birds across the empire will flock to celebrate her life and and feast.

Her most loyal subject has written of her tales. She has celebrated her life with daily visits to the court. Please join her in honoring Susan.

All hail Susan.
video

Susan and I thank you for joining us. 

Gail

‘Adieu!’ she cries; and waved her lily hand.

'Black-Eyed Susan'  John Gay (1685-1732)

56 comments:

  1. Such a clever post Gail. I have to admit it even tho I SO want to be in denial about fall. I think I'll come back in a few weeks and say my goodbyes then (after I've come to terms with the season)!

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  2. And so we bid the dowager empress a fond farewell til we meet again.

    Such great pictures and I loved the video. I coul hear the crickets and almost feel the gentle breezes.

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  3. Farewell our beloved Susan. May your seeds feed many birds this autumn and we look forward to your return next summer. Great post Gail! :)

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  4. All good things must come to an end as must the faithful August bloomer. Until next season Susan!

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  5. We salute thee brave and stalwart Susan and await your return next year with baited breath. Your loyal servant has honored you as befitting your role in her garden. You will be sorely missed.

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  6. Goodbye my brown eyed beauty till we meet again. Hopefully in memory you will always be dressed in yellow.

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  7. kathleen,

    We are royally sad over here in the Kingdom, but we fully embrace denial! It's easy to do when the temps are still in the 90s but you can't full Mother Nature!
    Come back for her memorial service a bit later!

    Gail

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  8. beckie,

    I am so glad you liked the video...I had to reshoot several , because cars kept zipping by! But the crickets were fun!

    All hail Susan!

    Gail

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  9. pgl,

    The birds are visiting her cousins the Purple Coneflowers so once she is ready to receive guests they will certainly drop by!

    Glad you had fun!

    gail

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  10. Dave,

    If deadheading would prevent fall, I would be out there everyday cutting away! So next year more Susans!

    Gail

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  11. lola,

    Do you know the poem I quoted! It was similar to your comment!...very good lola! I love it!

    Gail

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  12. Frances,

    The garden's loyal servant will sorely miss Susan's presence...does the royal adviser have any suggestions for her successor;-)

    See you soon.

    Gail

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  13. A few of Susan's Texas relatives continue to flourish on my corner of Katy. There have been some family squabbles due to overcrowding, forcing the Head Gardener to become Head Executioner and consign the less salutary members of the family to their demise.

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  14. Nice video, Gail--the crickets were perfect--I love seeing the longer vistas of your gardens. Tell your birds to fly some seeds Virginia way!

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  15. Cindy, mcok,

    We need some of your ruthlessness in the kingdom. Do you consult or offer distant learning courses our loyal supporter could take!

    Gail

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  16. cosmo,

    What seeds may I help you with madame? I can send lots of Rudbeckia! Let me know!

    Gail

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  17. The crickets are in on the honor too!

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  18. Tina,

    I shot the video this morning and the crickets were happily chirping!

    Gail

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  19. Bye-bye, Susan! She was so beautiful, and hopefully, she will come again next year and smile upon us all. I can't believe fall is almost here!

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  20. dp,

    She will return, there is no stopping Susan! Right now, I would say that we are on Susan 18! Maybe more. Susan has a long linage in her family! A dynasty even!

    Technically the meteorological first day of fall is tomorrow!

    Gail

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  21. I love black-eyed susans. Tell myself I'm getting some every single year, and haven't done it yet. But yellow/gold flowers are a real favorite of mine. So it's going on my list!
    Brenda

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  22. Hi Gail, I am planting tall asters, you already have those, my new one if A. frikartii 'Monch', more like a blue daisy. And later will be the mum Sheffield Pink, the very best, bar none. The grasses will come into play too, there are more shade tolerant ones, the deschampsias among others. Don't forget the fall color of fading perennials and shrubs too. I love fall, but it is more challenging to gardeners. Sounds like a trip to the nursery.

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  23. Gail ~ Even with the 80 degree days, fall is so in the air. At least we know that Susan will ascend to her throne again next year, starting the cycle all over again.
    Cindy

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  24. Brenda K,
    Once you plant them they will be with you for ever...they reseed nicely and can easily be pulled and moved to another spot...Throw some seeds out this fall.

    gail

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  25. Ah Susan, I bow before your golden simplicity. And I'm glad you're still going strong in my garden, as I'm not yet ready to say goodbye to you. I'm in serious denial over the approach of fall.

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  26. Even though fall is my favorite time of the year I hate to see summer end. I will miss my hummers, butterflies and blooms terribly.

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  27. Looks like she made a grand showing. She was there with all her court. Shouts and hoorahs could be heard across the land. All were hoping she would come their way another day.

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  28. Oh, Gail, say it isn't so... her glorious reign has provided joy & smiles for her virtual visitors as well.

    Not only that but her most loyal subject has convinced me to give her a first time try next year.

    I hear ya'll in denial of autumn and down here we are wishing for it... isn't that the way it goes?

    Hope you've had a great weekend.
    meems @Hoe&Shovel

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  29. Frances,

    Thanks for the suggestions, I will look into the grasses and the Pink Sheffield. I absolutely love the carex that I bought when you were here! The tall asters are making their blooms and it ought to be a good show.

    Gail

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  30. cindy,

    We are in the high 80s and low 90's with no rain in sight again! It may be fall meteorologically but my spirit is not ready. Susan is just timed to turn off after being in bloom since July and she may continue for some time in the shadier beds.

    It's nice to know that these stalwart plants will be back again and again. Is she is your garden?

    Gail

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  31. Very cute, Gail. I enjoyed hearing your crickets. Did you know that crickets will tell you the temperature? You must count the chirps. ;-)

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  32. gardengirl,

    I think that fall in the north really is a different experience. It signals REALLY cold weather, while we have periods of cold, but mainly irritating wet weather!
    You get snow! We get rain, maybe some ice.

    Still I will miss summer and it's exuberance of flower, bird and insect. Keep your denial until the very last second;)

    Gail

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  33. anna,

    Susan is not your shy retiring leader, she is out on the balcony soaking it all up! Later she'll take a ride through the kingdom and wave to her supporters!

    Glad you stopped by!

    Gail

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  34. Farewell, Queen Susan! We will see you again next year!
    Lovely photos, Gail, and I almost missed the video--glad I went back to watch it.

    I've admitted before that I don't have any black-eyed Susans (I'm not sure I can call myself a Midwest gardener!), but they are definitely on my list for next year. Even so, I can empathize with you on watching them fade. I have the same feelings about my purple coneflower, but I've noticed recently that the goldfinches love the dried globes on the coneflowers. So while we may be sad about their passing, another creature is enjoying them now.

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  35. meems.

    We are just getting the kingdom ready for her retirement, she is stepping down for the next generation...her portrait will be in the Blogger Hall for all to admire. She had a long reign!

    Gail

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  36. Shady,

    Who told you that one and when did you figure it out?

    Glad you liked the video! You, IVG and I seem to love the videos.

    Gail

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  37. Rose,

    It's good to know that Susan will feed the hungry birds for awhile...but there is always enough seed for the next generation! A packet or two of seeds will do it for you...you will never be without her!

    The videos are really fun to make and post! I am glad you found it!

    gail

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  38. Dave,

    Yet we hold on to the hope that just a bit more dead heading will keep her here longer;-)

    Gail

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  39. She's a bright and cheerful lady, to be sure. She's had a long and healthy reign and will take back her crown next summer, I'm sure. No wonder she is adored! All hail! :-) And a delightful little video, as well.

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  40. Nancy,

    She has been floriferous leader in the gardens, no one other flower surpassed her sunny disposition as a summer bloomer!

    I am imaging Nancy, that you make kick bottom videos!

    Gail

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  41. katarina,

    Susan is acknowledging your goodbye....;-)

    Gail

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  42. I loved hearing the cricket serenading the Empress Susan.

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  43. Lisa,
    It was fun wasn't it! Susan is laughing as she waves goodbye to her subjects! I love the new features that blogger peppers us with every now and then! Makes up for when they eat a comment or a burb when one is downloading photos!

    Gail

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  44. Great post as always, Gail!

    Our Susans are still at the height of their glory for a while longer at least, but the coneflowers are now goldfinch food, as will be the Susans when they fade eventually. Yours certainly were long lived and fantastically prolific this year (they like clay you know, hehe).

    Now, I've bugged you about this before, so I'll do it again ... you need Toad Lilies in your shady spots! Ours are just getting going and they will likely bloom until the bitter end of the freeze gets them. They are the best kept secret of the fall garden IMNSHO! I need to get some shots of the purple one that just started blooming in the Woodland Garden, and its neighbors aren't far behind!

    End of Tricyrtis plug! Cool video too... aren't they fun to do? I'm shooting shorter ones now but getting a lot of them.... I never dreamed my cam would be so versatile!

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  45. ivg,

    Good morning, The Susans have had a good run, but the drought is too much!

    I just got a Toad Lily a few weeks ago! Empress! Very lovely but I will take more recommendations. She hasn't begun to bloom yet, but many buds!

    The videos are too fun! I have to go get a cup of coffee! It's 5 am! The cat woke me up!

    Gail

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  46. Farewell, Susan, and happy trails (through the finches' gullets!) until next year.

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  47. Pam,

    It will be a week of feasting in honor of Susan~~ all the finches have invitations!

    Gail

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  48. This sure is a cute post, Gail - and I remember waving goodbye to Susan when she queened over my 'Hot Garden' back in Illinois.

    I haven't planted any Susans in the current garden but some form of this flower will be added eventually. The 9-foot sunflower already supplies more than enough schoolbus yellow, so I'll look for a paler cultivar with green eyes.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

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  49. Annie,

    She is a strong color! Lavenders seem to tame her a bit and then the reds can really jazz her up! I noticed today that her yellow actually looked good next to the Fairy Rose! But I admit, I did have on sunglasses at the time!

    Now I'm curious what appealing flower has a paler color and a green eye?

    Gail

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  50. I used to grow 'Irish Eyes', Gail, and also like the look of this one called Rudbeckia hirta 'Prairie Sun', but $15 is a lot to spend on a plant that might hate Texas!

    Annie

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  51. Annie,

    That is a lovely plant and that is a lot of money to spend on a plant that might not like Texas! Thanks for the link, I really do like that plant! Now, can you teach this middle aged puppy how to do the html, so I can add links in comments!

    Gail

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  52. Hail Susan, indeed! :-) She is the queen of the summer flower garden.

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  53. Connie,

    She really is! I have loved having her blooms in abundance, it will be a brown fall and winter without her sunny face!

    Gail

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Let us be grateful to people who make us happy;
they are the charming gardeners
who make our souls blossom.


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