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

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Goodbye and Thank You To All That's Made Me Smile



Please, won't you join me in the garden. It's time to say goodbye to a few good friends. Friends who have never let me down; who have been with me all summer and have bravely kept up the hard work. With a freeze forecast for this evening, it's time to say good bye.

Goodbye to the zinnias and to the creatures they have nourished all summer long.

The skippers and butterflies, especially thank you.



Goodbye to the last Coneflower, who bloomed more beautifully then I remember them blooming this summer.

Butterflies and skippers flocked to you all summer and now

they have returned to you. Goodbye beautiful flower.

Goodbye to the native asters who have have fed the last visitors to my garden.

You have nourished my spirit as the days have cooled with your late season beauty.


You have provided nectar for the hungry

late arriving butterflies when they stop by on their journey south. It's a long, hard journey and they need the nourishment.


Goodbye to my best garden friends. You are the earliest bees to arrive in the spring and the last to leave in November. You are in the garden first thing in the morning and the last to leave in the evenings. You aren't picky about flowers...just love the nectar! A little cold doesn't put you off work! Thank you for your hard work, you marvelous Bumbles.


Thank you Bumbles for making me laugh; for letting me pet you while you rested and for finally showing me who it was that pollinated the cleome! It was you! You were the first flying creature I had ever seen land on 'Sparkler White'!

Thank you for making sure that Clay and Limestone will have flower offspring from all our favorites.

Thank you darling honeybees! You arrived from where ever you have been hiding this summer to spend time with your friends and sip nectar

from the fall blooming native asters. You loved the Tartar Aster, too. You have good taste.

Knowing you were still with us and thriving... brightened my day.


Thank you my bee-utiful friends for posing prettily on pink flowers.

For embracing the salvia and all the other plants in this garden!

Thank you for being my garden friend and the hardest garden helper a gardener could know!

See you when it's warmer!

Gail

autumn -
now the slow bee allows
stroking of fur

A haiku by George Marsh


76 comments:

  1. The same thing's happening here Gail :(

    Ah well - now to dream of spring and to take walks on cold, clear frosty mornings...

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  2. Oh we will miss the little buzzers more that the flowers here. Our first frost happened I believe, although I have not been outside yet. Sad, but it is time.
    Frances
    http://fairegarden.wordpress.com/

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  3. Sigh! The cold helped me let go of the garden.
    Donna

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  4. Still no freeze here, although I think the north and west suburbs have gotten a freeze. Even so, very few perennial blooms remain, the annuals have been pretty beaten up by cold winds, and I haven't seen any hummingbirds, bees, or other nectar sipping insects in a couple of weeks.

    You've caught some beautiful parting shots of those lovely, helpful little garden friends Gail!

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  5. Farewell to all. You can rest assured that I will be waiting for them to return next spring.

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  6. I'm a sucker for romantic dramas...and I don't like goodbyes. Oh it's so sad yet very very beautiful Gail.

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  7. Sniff, sniff...pass me a tissue...these stories are so sweet and so sad.

    Cameron

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  8. Well, at least you got a little more than a month more than I did with your wonderful garden friends. I actually still have one daisy in bloom even after the snow came.

    What a wonderful send off to them all.

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  9. They will be missed! I'm already missing the warmer weather. We had a heavy frost this morning and I went out to take pictures, it was cold...very cold. How long until spring?

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  10. vp,

    Spring dreams and flower catalogs will help us out! I love walks on cold clear mornings...we are fortunate to live very close to woodland parks with hills and wonderful trails.

    Gail

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  11. Frances,

    I am not at all sure the frost hit my garden...it is an odd little micro-environment...sometimes frost setlles all around on those exposed lawns (!) and misses us.
    Off to see what the cold air has damamged...the trees are looking like fall...fianally.

    Gail

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  12. What a beautiful post! We had a large frost night before last and another one last night and believe it or not the plants in our garden seem un-affected by it. But, I know it's only a matter of time.-Randy

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  13. Donna,

    That is a good way to look at it Donna, I so didn't want to let go of any of it. Thankfully we still have some winter blooming trees to look forward to at clay and limestone.

    Gail

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  14. Linda,

    Snow but no frost! The weather up there is surely odd!
    Still it is time for the plants to shut down and the flying creatures to stop flying...that is what I keep telling myself!

    Thanks Linda, I have been out side madly photographing everything before it is gone. The record will help me plan where to put those delicious zinias next year...they will reseed where ever anyway!

    Gail

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  15. Good morning Gail. Even tho we had temps down to 25 on Monday night, we expect nicer days next week. I think our bees will be back on days when the temps are above 50 and I know my perennials will still pump out more blooms. Most of them laugh at 25 degrees.
    Marnie

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  16. Lisa,

    They are delightful creatures and will be greatly missed. Haven't they been busy this past few weeks!

    Gail

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  17. Oh Gail, I feel your pain. I had to read this post to my husband so that he could understand the bittersweet farewell that I perform each fall. Fall is lovely, and I love to see the foliage colors. But fall also brings winter behind it, and I hate saying goodbye to my flowers. Spring is too far away.

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  18. Tyra,

    I like a good romance myself;-) So glad you popped over!

    gail

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  19. Yes, a nice farewell for the lovelies of this season. Winter is coming.
    I got a shock this A.M. as I was not expecting a frost. It is on roof tops & vehicles. Hopefully it didn't cause the demise of my plants. We'll see later.

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  20. Cameron,

    I have some very nice tissues with lotion and aloe...wouldn't want to make your nose red;-)

    Gail

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  21. cinj,

    Good morning. I am glad you have a daisy blooming! It is hard for me to grasp snow so early and then it stays so late. We may have more bloom, (if we are lucky) the temps will rebound into the 60's this week!

    Gail

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  22. Dave,

    Did your garden get completely zapped? Sometimes a few flowers remain on mine...I haven't been out yet! I am waiting for a bit of a warm up!

    Gail

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  23. Randy,

    I am glad to hear you will have more bloom in your garden! It is always a matter of time with winter so near! We can't escape frost for much longer. I am glad you liked the post, it was fun to write and I do really like the bees!

    gail

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  24. Marnie,

    You are absolutely right...those bumbles aren't put off by a cold snap! Peaking out the window I see the Tennessee Coneflower is still standing up tall! Let's see what the unprotected garden looks like! Yesterday,there was a correopsis bloom hiding in the foliage and a Susan in bloom...maybe they are still smiling out there! Marnie, which of your perennials will rebloom after a frost? Some are very hardy!

    gail

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  25. msrobin,

    What a lovely compliment...thank you for sharing that with me! Does he understand now? I hope so...it helps that someone undersands the passion and joy we feel about gardening, even if it's just a little bit!

    gail

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  26. lola,

    Oh my! Let us know will you?

    Gail

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  27. Goodbye little bees. We had a frost here-finally. It is all over the farmer's fields but not so bad in my yard under the trees. The bananas and brugs bit it for sure. How did you fare?

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  28. Tina,

    Haven't ventured out yet! Soon but it looks really cold out there. It is shocking to go from 50 to 29 in one day! But it will be back up in the 60's today! The coneflowe in the Cedar Glade bed looks fine from the window. My guess is that my Lemon Grass is mush!
    Gail

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  29. Gail, your photos are beautiful! The zinnias and bees made me smile as well this year. Hopefully all your pictures of the bees will feed your gardening soul til next spring.

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  30. Beckie, I hope so too, the winter brings brown to this garden...we rarely have snow fall to cover and protect it. Thank you for your kind compliment...the bees are my favorites to photograph...they are so fascinating a creature. I will miss your beautiful Morning Glories...

    gail

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  31. Fond Farewells, Until we meet again next spring!!!

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  32. It actually got to 29 degrees here last night/this morning, a record of course. My plants seemed to have done pretty good. Have some potted plants covered will leave them that way tonight and then of course we are expecting it to warm up a bit.

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  33. Gail, this post got me all choked up! It's beautiful, touching, and bittersweet. I feel the same way...

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  34. That was so poetic Gail but SAD. I relived that feeling all over again reading your post, even tho I lost my beauties several weeks ago. I agree with Cinj ~ it was a beautiful send off. Hopefully we can all look forward to an even better year next season.

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  35. kathleen,

    It has been a fabulous year in the garden...even with two droughty periods. Sharing triumphs and failures with all of you has made it extra special. I have seen flowers, trees, shrubs and creatures who visit through
    eyes that have had some kind of vision enhancement!

    I am glad you stopped by to share the farewell.

    gail

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  36. kylee,

    It is a bittersweet time in the garden! Hard to say goodbye to it all...I am looking forward to a rest, although there is still PLENTY to do! But now I might get to visit even more bloggers! What fun! What will you do with your 'down time'?

    gail

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  37. darla,

    We drape our plantst, too..old sheets are wonderful for that! Will you be having another frost chance tonight?

    A few very tender plants bit the dust...Lemon Grass and some tropicals I left out but I think the garden might actually still be alive? Let's see if the Bumbles show up!

    Gail

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  38. skeeter,

    Exactly until we meet again..How are things in Georgia?

    Gail

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  39. Gail, Such a beautiful post! I love all these reminders of the blooms we've seen this summer and fall and the winged friends that always seem to be enjoying them. It's hard to let go of what has given us so much joy the last several months.

    We have had frost the last two nights. I had to be at work early this morning, so it wasn't until early afternoon that I took a stroll around to see the effects it's had. There are still a few surprises--my geraniums look better than they did all summer! But so much has wilted and said its last good-by for the year.

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  40. We're also expecting cold weather any day now. Sad, but true.
    Katarina

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  41. Rose suggested I call and read your post....she said I would like it.......she was wrong, I loved it. As someone who loves bees and find the goodbyes to the bees in autumn sad I thought this to be a beautiful farewell...........

    Tku for honouring your bees......

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  42. Those bees are doubtless grateful to you for the multitude of beautiful and tasty blooms you've provided them with this year! If you plant it, they will come :-)

    Stay warm & cozy!

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  43. Katarina,

    I am still pondering the hail you experienced! It is sad...the melancholy fall transitioning to winter!

    Gail

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  44. cheryl,

    I am so very glad you stopped by and enjoyed the post. Aren't they just the best garden helpers! Who couldn't love them. They aren't the least bit scary...

    We managed to dodge the frost bullet last night...this garden is oddly protected by shrubbery;-)

    I liked your post today, too!

    gail

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  45. Cindy,mcok, I have come to enjoy the bees so very much...maybe knowing how powerful a role they play in pollinating our crops and plants has made them even dearer to me!

    Our fireplace is out of commission for a few weeks, and I will miss it this weekend!

    Have fun at Wit's End!

    gail

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  46. This is s nice post on the dependence between our plants and garden wildlife visitors. How lucky for them that you planted varieties to nourish them, and be pollinated in turn. How especially fun that you got to watch it all.

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  47. Rose,

    I am glad you liked the post...I adore the bees. It was really blogging that helped me appreciate them so much. Thank you for introducing Cheryl to my blog...she is another Very Nice Person..(you and beckie are also VNP).

    Are you substitute teaching right now?

    Gail

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  48. Northern Shade,

    I am glade you liked the post. The bees were still visiting the zinnias, asters and then that bumble showed up on the cleome just when I was going to google cleome pollinators! They are incredible creatures.

    Native plants have always sense to me, but they aren't the only plants that bees and butterflies love!

    Have a lovely day in your garden~~

    Gail

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  49. What a pretty garden ode, Gail. Rest asure those friends will come back to a gardener like you next year!

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  50. Gail, So glad Cheryl stopped by to visit you--she knows so much about bees and cares for them so much that I knew she would love this post.

    Yes, I've been substituting more than usual this past week. Today I had to be at school shortly after 7 AM to supervise detention hall. Not easy for somebody who usually lounges around in her robe reading blogs until 8 or 9 AM:)

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  51. Beautiful post... but I hate saying goodbye. I'd rather say something positive, like: "Until the next..." :)

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  52. blackswampgirl/Kim,

    Yes, goodbyes are not easy! The funny thing is that the zinnias made it through the frost...not sure about last night though. It is cold in the garden! "See you at your next post, Kim;-)" I am glad you came for a visit!

    Gail

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  53. Everybody's left the party here. I saw the last Painted Lady on Monday, now there aren't even any bees around. On the bright side, the mosquitoes are history!

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  54. A lovely post Gail. From me also a fond farewell to all our garden friends and wonderful blooms; till we meet again!

    BTW I've just noticed that I've got one of your native asters in my garden. Bought it at Piet Oudolf's nursery.

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  55. Love the native aster, and I see I'm not alone. But don't worry. I won't come over and land on it! ;-)
    ~ Monica

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  56. Maybe one or two of your blooms will escape the frost. I saw a lone coneflower bloom this morning and we have had several frosts already. Even if all are lost, you can enjoy your marvelous photos all winter as you await spring!

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  57. Gail, Georgia is colder then it should be this time of year. Burrrrrr.... Not much color showing in the trees but with this cold snap, I am sure things will quickly change! We go to the opening night of the County Fair tonight! Tonight its corndog and funnel cakes for dinner.. lol

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  58. MMD,

    I celebrate with you the absence of mosquitoes. They love me too much!

    Gail

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  59. garden faerie,

    The native asters are quite lovely and are welcome in this garden...you are, too. So fly over anytime!

    gail

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  60. That’s sad, some times I wish I could say goodbye to my garden for the season and try my hands at something else, but it is impossible in Florida

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  61. Rusty,

    I plan on being a semi-evergreen gardener! I will garden on and off during the rest of fall and winter! I think it would be hard to manage a large garden all year round. It is sad to say goodbye, but we do get a rest..then we get restless to have spring! Is your garden large?

    Gail

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  62. skeeter,

    Yeah you do have warmer weather then us! Less rain, too! Have fun at the fair!

    Gail

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  63. cindy,

    They did escape the frost and now the temps are heading toward the low 70s...I hope to use the photos
    to help me figure out changes to make!

    Have a wonderful weekend with your cutie piee!

    Gail

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  64. camellia,

    Thank you that was very sweet! I think I have many native bees living in the garden, so the new ones will emerge and be visiting this spring. We do want to make sure that there are planty of early bloomers for them...like dandelion flowers!

    Gail

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  65. YE,

    Which one do you have? Oh, you! Piet Oudulf's nursery! I cry unfair!! We are jealous...you live close to Paris, Provence, Italy and then this! Stuck in Nashville!

    Gail

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  66. What a lovely way to say good-bye to the flowers.

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  67. Nancy,

    Thank you! I will miss them...are there any that will leave your garden this season?

    Gail

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  68. Dear Gail.......I have a mystery plant on my recent post.....Beckie tells me that you uploaded it on a previous post and sure enough you have........I wonder if you know what it is?? I would love to know.....perhaps when you have a moment you could pop over.....

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  69. Wow Gail..you have a ton of goodbyes for your flowers. They really were faithful companions. They were always smiling and never once did I hear them complain about the clay, limestone, lack of water, and you always taking their picture. Most wouldn't want their pictures taken all the time. You surely must be loved for them to welcome you like that. As I was leaving your garden today--I heard them say....that Gail makes us feel at home.

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  70. The many, many comments here show how this post resonates with us gardeners. Thank you, Gail, for a great one today.

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  71. Your post expresses the same thoughts about my own precious plants and visitors. Thanks for making me smile.

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  72. I am jealous of the frost and cooler weather! No frost here in Hong Kong, ever...if the temps drop into the 40's everyone brings out their fur coats.

    Funny story though - very rarely, on Tai Mo Shan, the highest mountain in Hong Kong, up in the New Territories (so marginally further north) frost WILL be predicted. When that happens (not since I've lived here anyway) I'm told that people drive their cars up there the night before, spend the night with their families, and wake up early in the morning to scrap the frost off their cars so their children can see it!

    Love you, Lynn

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  73. What a nice tribute to your garden friends! I had to say goodbye a few weeks ago so I feel your pain. Now I have settled myself into the garden cleanup and anticipation of spring mode.

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  74. Cheryl, It is a beauty of a plant...glad to help with Frances, help of course!

    Anna, My plants are tolerant! You have to be to survive the growing conditions! Were I to be starting out now...I would prepare the soil as you have done!

    Thank you, Kim! You all make blogging worthwhile!

    Gardenforlife, We do love our plants and critters...they are powerful friends and give us so much...relaxation, beauty...and something fun to do!

    gardensbyt, There is always something to do in the garden...we say goodbye and then cleanup for when our friends return! Not a bad deal!

    Gail

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  75. This may sound strange to you but this is the season when we try to grow all the flowers and vegetables which are summer-growers in the temperate world... asters, tomatoes, calendula... all of them finally get a chance in the tropics now.
    So just think that your beloved plants have gone vacationing in the tropics : )

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  76. Hi Gail!
    You have my kind of garden with flowers in the sun and wind with bees and butterflies. It has been a pleasure to look at these images. I love the asters... you know this time of year I make a mental list of what I hope for next year. Is there a plant you especially love? for me it is poppies...and aquilegia and...
    :)
    I have to find a place for asters! Cone flower I love, but it does not do well here.
    I do know I want more nigella, love in a mist!
    Best,
    Philip

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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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