Saying Goodbye to the Garden

It’s hard to leave the garden when you’re going away for a long trip. Judy and I are heading to Japan tomorrow and we’ll be staying there for a couple of weeks. (It’s another vacation piggybacked on Judy’s business trip.) I can’t stop thinking of everything I’ll miss while we’re gone.

So I spent much of the weekend inspecting the beds and borders, taking everything in, and fretting about what blooms I may miss while I’m gone. Why don’t you come along while I say goodbye to the garden and all its botanical citizens.

First off, goodbye to the Susans – both Black-Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida) and Brown-Eyed Susan (R. triloba). They’ve both had a pretty good year, and they’ll probably still have a few blooms when we get back.


brown eyed susan
Brown-Eyed Susan

Goodbye,Β Sedum telephium ‘Matrona’.

sedum matronna

Farewell, Calamint (Calamintha nepetoides). It took a while, but you’ve recovered nicely from the attack of the killer Four-Lined Plant Bugs.


Goodbye, Helenium autumnale ‘Mardi Gras’. You really do offer long-lasting color while summer is winding down. I might try to fit in another couple of you.


Goodbye, Driveway Border.


Goodbye, Joe Pye Weed (Eupatoriadelphus maculatus ‘Gateway’). You stayed mostly under 6 feet this year, which I appreciate.

joe pye

Goodbye, Bumblebees.


Goodbye, Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum). As with the Calamint, the Four-Lined Plant Bugs slowed you down, but you still put on a decent show.


Goodbye, Golden Glow (Rudbeckia laciniata). Most of your blooms have lost their rays, and you are in the process of being transformed from wildflower to Goldfinch food dispenser, but that’s fine.

golden glow

Goodbye, Northern Sea Oats (Chasmanthium latifolium). I hope you don’t mind that I cut back around half your seedheads. It’s just that you’re a little too carefree when it comes to self-sowing.

northern sea oats

Farewell, Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum).


Not sure what those tiny dangly red things are, but they’re pretty.

switchgrass 1

Goodbye, all you asters. Aromatic Aster (Symphyotrichum oblongifolius) has just the first few blooms. New England Aster (S. novae-angliae) and Short’s Aster (S. shortii) look like they are almost ready to start popping. I really hope their show isn’t over before


Crooked Stem Aster (S. prenanthoides) and a couple of others are in full bloom, though.



Goodbye, Goldenrods: Bluestem Goldenrod (Solidago caesia), Anise-Scented Goldenrod (S. odora), and all the others.

bluestem goldenrod
Bluestem Goldenrod


anise scented goldenrod
Anise-Scented Goldenrod

Farewell, Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia). So long, Bronze Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare).

fennel and tithonia

And Goodbye, Monarch Butterflies.

monarch and tithonia

Goodbye, Roses. I appreciate the way you’ve kept blooming through the summer.

sally holmes
‘Sally Holmes’


Darlow's Enigma
‘Darlow’s Enigma’

Goodbye, goats and Goatsbeard (Aruncus dioicus).



And goodbye, troll.


And farewell, Rupert. Keep an eye on things while we’re gone, please.


While we’re gone, I won’t spend much time on the blog. I’ll just post occasional photos – think of them as digital postcards. I’ll write longer posts after I return. And I don’t think I’ll have time to respond to comments or read other blogs, so please don’t take offense.

After we return I’ll get back into my blogging routine. In the meantime, be well.

That’s all for now.

39 Comments on “Saying Goodbye to the Garden

  1. You almost got me snivelling there…. sad to leave your garden, but great you have got another chance to visit Japan! Look forward to the ‘postcards’. Have a wonderful time!

  2. Your garden is looking fabulous and I hope it gets just the right amount of sunshine and rain to still be looking great on your return. Have a safe journey and a wonderful holiday.

  3. Please avoid getting tangled up in a nuclear war while in Japan (or while you are here for that matter–they can be very hard on flowers and plants of all kinds). Hope the garden is in great shape when you return!

  4. Your garden has now had a proper goodbye so you can jet off to Japan with a happy heart. You are going to have so much fun you won’t even think about your garden, well maybe a little. It is on that long plane ride home when you will become filled with anticipation of the reunion with your garden. Have the best time on your trip. I can’t wait to read all about it. Bon Voyage.

  5. Have a wonderful trip and thanks for sharing your garden. I’ve already had to start fall clean-up and will continue to do so. Something you can look forward to when you arrive home.

  6. A wonderful tour of the garden! I really like the Sally Holmes rose! I felt bad leaving my garden for a couple weeks recently. but it’s always fun to see what has changed when you get back! Hope you have a good trip!

  7. Have a great holiday; I look forward to hearing more about Japan. I’m sure there will still be lots to enjoy in your garden when you get back.

  8. Safe travels and have a fabulous time!!

    Look forward to postcards and at the end your reunion with the garden!

  9. Bon voyage, and I’m sure that Rupert has things well in hand. Japan is a wonderful place. I hope you can get out of the cities and see some of the amazing gardens there.

  10. And goodnight, moon! Your gardens are oh so lovely. No wonder you hate to leave right now. Have a wonderful trip and look forward to reading your posts when you get back.

  11. Wow! Japan! Hope you get to eat lots of delicious, exotic food and see lots of delicious, exotic gardens. And BTW, those red dangly bits on the Panicum are the anthers of its flowers, so they’re its dangly sexy bits, you dirty old man.

  12. Your gardens are absolutely gorgeous. I will be saying goodbye to my gardens soon too, not because I’m going on a trip, but because in a few weeks I need to pull any remaining annuals and clean up the gardens for Autumn. Have a wonderful trip. πŸ™‹πŸ¦

  13. But it’s not a “forever” goodbye. Have fun and when you return, even if some of your plants have passed their bloom peak, they will still be there to welcome you home. Rupert is there to make sure the butterflies and bees don’t get out of hand with wild parties. (Your garden is gorgeous, but I know you know that.)

  14. Jason, your garden is fabulous! Have a wonderful time in Japan. See you and your garden when you return. Wildflower and native plant folks love seedheads, so there will still be beauty in your garden.

  15. Love the long shots of the flower beds; they will miss you when you’re gone, as will we. Safe travels!

  16. Oh, I think you’ll be surprised with some things going strong when you get back–like the Asters and the Tithonia and some of the Goldenrods. Monarch migration should be about hitting its peak in your area in mid- to late September. Heck, I have about 34 chrysalids that I’ll release during the next three weeks … so, many of their cousins and brothers and sisters will be traveling through Evanston on their way to Mexico. πŸ˜‰ Have an amazing trip to Japan!

  17. Have a wonderful trip! But it is always hard to leave the garden when it is looking as beautiful as yours is at the moment. That first photo is lovely and I can just imagine how I would love to drive or walk by that changing scene.

  18. Your garden will miss you! But think how wonderful it will be to see it when you return. In the meantime, soak up all the wonders in Japan and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.

  19. I can see why you are reluctant to leave the garden, it’s looks in it’s prime. I do hope you have plenty of blooms when you return. Have a marvelous time, I’ll look forward to hearing all about

  20. Japan – how exciting! It’s always sad to leave the garden but my usual hope is that all of the surprises that I find when I return are good ones πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to read about your adventures on your return.

  21. Leaving is a wrench, but so-o-o worth it. For me it’s easier to leave the garden than it is my old dog, who’s nearly 17. So my Japanese trip is going to be vicarious …

  22. Transformation “from wildflower to Goldfinch food dispenser” is a beautiful thing. You have a way with words.

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