Deep Into Fall

dwarf Alberta spruce

     There are signs we are heading deep into fall here.  As I was returning from my walk with the dog one afternoon I noticed branches had been torn out of one of the three dwarf Alberta spruces that line the front of the house.  I have seen a young buck come through the yard many times this fall.  I assume this buck did this with his antlers.  I have read that as the antlers harden, the antler velvet dries, and deer like to remove the dried velvet. And as breeding season approaches bucks spar with the trees and make high visibility rubs.  Of course the damage had to be in the front of the house instead of out back where there are many more trees and bushes.  I will wait till spring and probably replace this and the other two spruces with something else.  I heard a fox cry for the first time since last fall about two weeks ago.  A few days ago I finally saw two red foxes in the woods at the back of the house, but they were too quick for me to catch with my camera.

     In the garden, after sub-freezing night temperatures for the last two weeks, plants are all but gone.  The mums in the patio pot are looking very bedraggled.

sweet alyssum
     In the back yard garden, the sweet alyssum have given up.

     And the brunnera plants are fading fast.

       The only plants looking good are the hellebores under the dogwood tree.  I hope they bloom in January or February.

white alyssum
     In the garden at the front of the house, the white alyssum are done.

ornamental cabbages
     But the ornamental cabbages  in between the white alyssum are in their prime and will look good until March.

daffodil shoot
     Even with the snow and ice storm forecasted for us today, the hope of spring is visible in a shoot in the front garden.

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