Picture: Tom MacCubbin
Gardeners have to sneak away to enjoy the real fall seasonal changes of northern landscapes and gardens. In the tristate areas of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts fall color was at a good medium level last week. The trees were coloring up but most have plenty of change to go and the flower gardens were maintaining their color too.
Maples, ash and similar trees were showing bright colors while the oaks were still a good green. Some residents were saying it’s the best fall color they have seen. It had been a moist summer and the trees made good growth. These conditions and warmish temperatures have lingered into the fall. Many of the wild flowers were in bloom and the roadside grasses were a yellow to brown. Flower gardens there brimming with fall color too.
Window boxes and flower beds were still in bloom. Petunias could be enjoyed along with asters, dahlias, zinnias, cosmos and marigolds. A stop at the Prescott Park All-America Selections garden in New Hampshire found plenty of blossoms opening on the new marigolds, salvia, celosia, begonias and zinnias. Most likely these would have about another month to please the visitors.
Vegetable gardens have given their good harvests. Tomatoes were still producing but the vines were quickly declining. In one garden a good stand of globe artichokes was giving a final yield and it appeared the greens could linger for a month or so with a little protection. These gardens will be mulched and put to bed for winter after they are frosted and decline. Replanting is normally not until May the next year.
Picture: Tom MacCubbin
Pumpkin crops appeared plentiful as many homes had displays. There were also some ‘guess the weight’ contests noted at motels. These plus other relatives in the squash family were on display at the Fryeburg Fair in Maine. The fair also featured a good display of garden crops from 4-H youth and adults in the communities. The animals are always a feature of the fair and you could pet just about any farm animal you liked. The tractor pulls were also a special feature. It was fun urging on each contestant – most seem to have a fan club.
Heading north to experience the real fall color displays and local fairs, as you may remember, is a special treat for relocated Florida residents. And for all residents there is always an urge to see and feel the seasonal changes even if just for a few days.