November Essence

Lobularia hybrid ‘Snow Princess’ (Sweet Alyssum)

November passed quickly with the garden left largely unattended and mostly unvisited, except by the avian community. Most days colorful Eastern Towhees, Northern Cardinals (North Carolina’s state bird) and Eastern Bluebirds vie for turns at the feeders. Occasionally, Red-bellied Woodpeckers stop by and frequently, Brown-headed Nuthatches and Black-capped Chickadees watch for their chances to approach.

On November 22 there were ample flowers left in the borders to fill Thanksgiving day vases with fresh zinnias, echinacea, lavender sprigs and foliage, Iceberg roses, chrysanthemums, and there were pristine camellias to float in small ceramic dishes. The next day brought the first hard frost of the year and this week a few nights with temperatures down into the twenties finally have convinced many plants to consider winding things down.

I wandered around today to see what has survived the cold. The old-fashioned woody-stemmed pale yellow chrysanthemum looks very sad, but I included a couple of pictures below to illustrate an interesting transition. One image shows the original yellow of the flower and the next shows how the chrysanthemum flowers change to pink as they fade.  Most of the garden is wilted and tinged with brown, though a few flowers still look nice for this time of year.

As November’s end approaches the day is clear, the sun is low. By 1:30 pm much of the garden lay in shade cast from the Carolina Sapphires. The sunset will come early at 5:02 p.m., after making its late start this morning at 7:06 a.m. November accomplishments are few except for the addition of a few daffodil bulbs, but the garden and the gardener are content.

10 thoughts on “November Essence

  1. SpruceKnob

    Such an interesting difference between Vermont and North Carolina! Amazing to me that you have so many flowers in November, ones that are long gone by this time in the north.

  2. Cathy

    Still so much to look at in your garden – wonderful! I love lamb’s ear leaves and have some in my garden too. Some leaves remain through the winter, but mostly they decompose and thus protect the plant from frosts. Our sunrise is about 7:40am, sunset 4:20pm, so we have less light at the moment.

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      The lamb’s ears are surprisingly fresh right now. I like them but have had to pull up a lot of them this year after they spread too much. Your days must feel way too short. We can forward to winter solstice so the days start getting longer again. One thing I enjoy about summer is having such long periods of sunlight. susie

  3. Christina

    Your weather is more different to here than I realised; in summer it seemed similar but we haved only justbegun to have temperatures below 10°C at night and often during the days it has been really warm, today is cold and wet and not nice at all! Christina

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Interesting to note the differences in your weather since we do grow a lot of similar plants. Glad November has been enjoyable for gardening. We need some rain here.

  4. paulinemulligan

    Lovely to see that you still have so many flowers brightening your garden. We have had some hard frosts this week so now everything has decided to have a rest! Winter is still a lovely season with its contrast to the rest of the year.

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Pauline. It will be interesting to see what winter brings. Our last winter was mild and spring came very early. I’m ready for a bit of winter (maybe just a few days will do it!).


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