Friday, October 30, 2015

Apple Cider

At this time of year, we make alot of cider and apple pies. The secret to both is to use at least three different kinds of apples- all of which should be tart or strongly flavored. Namby-pamby apples have less taste when pressed or baked. Unfortunately, some of the varieties I have bought, based on glowing descriptions in catalogs are poor--or at least I don't care for them. It has taken some of these varieties 15 years or more to fruit enough for me to decide I don't like them. I would say roughly have of the feral apples around me have a good taste for cider and have aren't worth pressing. In my gardens I am trying to do a last weeding and mulching before the winter. I planted 4 kinds of Narcissus: Altun Ha, Pistachio, Avalon and Garden Classic (it could be Classis Garden)--I also put in some Puschkinia. I still have Allium 'Ozawa' bloong.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Mid -October Flowers

I had to give up swimming for the year last Sunday but my garden has not given up yet. I have planted quite alot of varieties of Hydrangea paniculata which are still blooming and pretty if a little somber. Some of my favorite cultivars are Big Ben, Floribunda, Pinky Winky, Pink Diamond. Unique and White Moth: I like all the vaieties with a natural style inflorescence. Besides the hydrangeas, I have lots of Rudbeckia triloba--I sort of let it naturalize. There is also some of the late, quite blue monkshood (A. arendsii), also some late Helianthus, especially maximillian's sunflower (H. salisifolius) which doesn't become such a weed as many. I have Colchicum and Allium Ozawa which are both magenta and quite short- I really prefer taller plants suitable for large flower arrangments. At church last week, the minister had to bend a sprig of beech foliage as it was blocking peoples view. I have to be more carefull.