The Rhythm of the Year

 

For the time being summer has deserted us and the rains have come … hopefully not for too long  … but if the season has turned then I am hoping for an Indian Summer … when it is unseasonably warm … dry and hazy … an autumn heatwave … something to keep our spirits up during the headlong rush into winter.

There is harmony In Autumn, and a lustre in its sky, which through the summer is not heard or seen, As if it could not be, as if it had not been! ~Percy Bysshe Shelley

Slowly the year turns … the end of one season … the beginning of another.  The days are cooler … the nights are longer.  When does it change from being late summer to autumn.  The garden shows these changes … the flowers are slowly going to seed … no longer full and lush … everything looking slightly bedraggled … maybe sending  out one or two late flowers to show willing … but they seem to know their time is up.  Berries are forming and starting to ripen on the trees … food for grateful birds in the winter cold.  Apples are ripening … plums becoming full and juicy … blackberries in the hedgerows are  shining  like purple jewels waiting   to stain your fingers and tongues … the best of autumn fruits.  Hips and haws are turning red, elderberries  drip from the bushes and hazel and chestnuts harden and brown … so much bounty  amongst the leaves of gold and yellow.  But not yet … not quite.

rudbeckia

rudbeckia

Autumn begins with a subtle change in the light, with skies a deeper blue, and nights that become suddenly clear and chilled.  The season comes full with the first frost, the disappearance of migrating birds, and the harvesting of the season's last crops. ~Glenn Wolff and Jerry Dennis

  SDC12070

In the garden Autumn is indeed the crowning glory of the year, bringing us the fruition of months of thought and care and toil.  And at no season, save perhaps daffodil time, do we get such superb colour effects as from August to November.  ~Rose G. Kingsley

japanese anemone

The hazy, cloudless skies of Indian Summer.
Leaves scurrying down the street before the wind.
The cold shiver from an arctic blast.
Indian Summer.
The last warmth of the sun.
Chilly mornings and glorious warm afternoons.
The touch of frost on grass and window pane.
The smell of burning leaves.
Keith C. Heidorn

patio rose - sweet dreams

For man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together. For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad.  ~ Edwin Way Teale


Youth is like spring, an overpraised season
more remarkable for biting winds than general breezes.
Autumn is the mellower season,
and what we lose in flowers,
we more than gain in fruits.
Samuel Butler

Like Jen at Muddy Boot Dreams said in her last post Postcards from the Edge of Summer ‘ I’m lingering in summer for as long as I can.’ I wish I could agree, but she lives over the water where the summers are short and fierce, here in the UK we gently drift into autumn, hardly recognising its approach until it is upon us.  Let’s hope for a few more weeks of gentle warmth, working in the garden, harvesting crops, picking a few last flowers for the house before we start thinking ahead, buying bulbs for a spring display – no, I’m not ready to let summer go either.

Comments

  1. Beautiful post, Elaine. I'm not quite ready to let summer go yet either - though I am happy the extreme heat has gone. As I'm writing this, rain is pouring down and there was even some thunder and lightning earlier. I'm hoping for an Indian summer too - I love drinking tea in the garden in the sun whilst red leaves float down around me. Pure magic. xxx

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    1. We can only keep our fingers crossed that summer hasn't left us completely. I must admit to liking it a bit cooler too - just not too cool!

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  2. I'm on the look out or plants that extend the summer for as long as possible.

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    1. Without Cosmos and Rudbeckia there wouldn't be a lot of colour in my garden - I did plant some Michaelmas Daisies last year - no sign of them yet though.

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    2. The best Michaelmas daisy I have is aster Monch frikartii It started to flower last month and flowers for ages with no sign of mildew/

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  3. I really can't believe how quickly this summer is going past.

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    1. Funny that when it's a wet summer it seems to last for ages - when it's a good one it goes by in a flash.

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  4. It was less than ten here today, and that is really unusual and the rain is here too! But those rudbeckias of yours are just perfect! Such happy flowers.

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    1. All the rain we have over the last few days has laid the garden flat - just when it was looking its best too.

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  5. Such a beautiful look at the end of the season friend....I too hope and pray for some more warmth as I am not ready for cold. Last winter was very hard on us here in Chicago and no one is quite ready for the summer days to end. Wishing you a wonderful weekend in the garden friend...enjoy your sweet moments! Nicole xoxo

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    1. The long winters make the short summer even more precious - we should try to enjoy them to the full.

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  6. There is a distinct feeling in the air that we can't quite put to words, a coolness, a quietness, a restlessness, a shift in the sun light, a change in the breeze that lets us know Summer is getting ready to leave us. Here, the corn in the fields is tasseling, a sure sign that harvest can't be far away. Right now driving down the country roads is like weaving through tunnels of green. I am done with the garden, but I'll be out there tomorrow battling weeds, hoping that the first frost comes early. I am sick of them. Lovely post, Elaine.

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    1. Thanks Ann - a beautifully written comment.

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  7. Please, let's keep summer a little bit longer. It's winding down here in CO, too. Your flower photos are a burst of late summer color.

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    1. I agree Barb it has gone far too quickly for my liking.

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  8. There definitely seems to be a bit of change in the season, although I'm not ready to give up summer and still hoping for some more nice warm sunny days. Appropriate words by Percy Bysshe Shelley.

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    1. It does seem to have flown by this year - a bit more sun would be welcome - it has certainly cooled off considerably just lately.

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  9. I have been thinking the same. I often have a little wander round the garden before I go out to work, and this week I have felt a definite "nip in the air" early in the morning. The quality of light is different too. The seasons seem to have been telescoped this year - Summer started late, but finished early.

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    1. I agree Mark - I was so enjoying the summer as well - but there is time yet for a late summer comeback.

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  10. A most enjoyable post and lovely pictures. I like this time of year when summer ends and autumn begins, as much for it's freshness as anything else. Flighty xx

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    1. Well it has certainly freshened up this week

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  11. Like you, I'm clinging on to summer, unready yet to let it go. In our garden the hydrangeas are fading fast and the hardy geraniums are looking distinctly seedy but still some of the flowers cling on to their colour as we cling on to these last precious days:)

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    1. I do hope it lasts a little longer Rosie it has gone far too quickly this year.

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  12. Great writing! Strange, we had a beautiful summer but too short, let's hope on a long late summer slowly going over in a beautiful autumn.

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    1. I agree a lovely autumn will make up for the short summer.

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  13. I truly enjoyed your post and your wonderful writing. The garden quotes add such a nice touch to the beautiful photos. It has been a beautiful summer and there are already hints of fall in the air with temperatures in the 70's and the perennials starting to fade...but autumn can be lovely as well.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment Lee I agree about autumn but it has come around too quickly this year.

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  14. I'm not ready to let go of summer either, but thankfully we are experiencig some well needed rain...then the summer weather will return:) I loved this post of yours ~ thanks :)

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    1. Yes we have plenty of rain too the garden definitely needed it. Thanks Glo.

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  15. Beautiful words Elaine, and that rose, oh my goodness...I am in raptures over the color, and the multi layered petals. We are still hanging on tight here, it might go for a few more weeks, or it might not.

    It's always hard to tell until you look back.

    Thanks for mentioning my post, that is very nice of you, I was wondering where all the new comments came from..

    Jen

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    1. I know I moaned about the heat but I sure wish I hadn't now as it has turned quite cool especially in the evening

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  16. An enjoyable, evocative post! Thankyou! I agree completely with your sentiments, as it feels to me that summer is so nearly over, and I can feel Autumn approaching - then I remind myself that it is only mid-August! I was pondering on it today and am wondering if summer is coming to an end earlier than normal. Is it perhaps because we had such an early Spring ? Our first hawthorn leaves appeared in mid February this year.
    We need to hang on to every vestige of summer ...

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    1. Thanks jane - maybe this is just a little hiccup and summer will return for just a while longer - I sure hope so.

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  17. A most beautiful post .
    Your flowers are so lovely. Such a variety.
    I dont want to think about Autumn. I will miss the sunny days and the long balmy nights on the verandah.

    Elaine.. please can you send me your e mail.. I am having difficulty finding it on your blog.. mine is on my blog.. thanks.. happy saturday val.xxx

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    1. Thanks Val it has been a lovely summer here too except for the last couple of weeks I think it's all my fault as I said I was looking forward to some rain hopefully an Indian summer will make up for it.

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  18. A beautiful post with lovely quotes. I too am hanging onto the remnants of summer but you are right, autumn is creeping in and berries are now everywhere. I love these pics, especially that gorgeous rose and the Japanese anemone.xxx

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    1. I replanted that rose because it wasn't doing very well where it was - since then it has burst into flower - such a gorgeous colour I agree.

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  19. Such a beautiful post Elaine.
    I love your way with words.

    Y
    Autumn is most certainly knocking at the door in my part of Kent.
    I see the changes daily.....I love the way the shadows start to stretch across the lawn A wonderful time of year.

    BTW read previous post....room looks lovely, fresh clean and organised. I feel sure you will keep it this way, it feels so much better walking into an uncluttered room :)

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    1. Thanks Cheryl - yes the season is gradually changing - mores the pity - so early though - just a few more weeks of summer would be nice as we are going away at the beginning of September - fingers crossed for a nice bit of sun by then.

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  20. It's funny how the weather has made us all feel as though it's nearly autumn; I don't usually feel like this until mid-September! I live in hope though, like you, for a few more weeks (months?) of warmth although everything in the garden feels very topsy turvy this year.

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    1. I agree that it is far too early a few more weeks would be good - it has been pretty cold here- I even thought about putting the heating on last night - instead I wrapped myself in a blanket - ridiculous in August

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  21. Yesterday was the first day for a few months that I went to the allotment with a fleece. Did not need it once I got going but its presence reassured me. Today it so windy and cool that I would not even contemplate working outdoors :( Let's hope that summer has not had its final fling Elaine. or if it has that we are compensated with a glorious autumn. Beautiful rudbeckias.

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  22. Keeping my fingers crossed Anna hoping that this cool spell is just a little false alarm

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  23. But as soon as September comes there is a subtle shift and a sense of autumn, even when the weather is warm. I'm also hoping for an Indian summer, one of my favourite times of year when it's gentle.

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    1. September is usually one of my favourite months - just hope it lives up to expectations this year.

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  24. Elaine - such a lovely post. Like you I am not ready to let summer go either. What is that gorgeous rose with the coral color? It is beautiful...makes me want one (LOL)!
    Generally in Ohio our Indian Summer comes in November or December after a hard frost or a light skiff of snow. Perhaps the temps will get into the 70's and for a day or so it will last. Not every year do we get that blessing but I always hope for it. Hope you get yours.

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    1. The weather has changed very suddenly Debbie but I am hoping for a bit more sunshine yet - fingers crossed.

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  25. Replies
    1. It is isn't it - it was growing in the ground but sulking so I lifted it and put in a container where it showed its happiness by blooming practically straight away.

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  26. Such beautiful bouquets and such touching prose to go with them. I am hoping for a long autumn but clinging to summer, today being a perfectly hot summer day here in Nova Scotia. Thanks Elaine for your comments on my blog, always appreciated.

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    1. Hi Bren,
      Nice to see you here - we are going through a weird patch of weather at the moment - not like August weather at all - I'm hoping that summer returns for just a little while before the proper onset of Autumn.

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