November…already?

I was tempted to call this post “Preparing Ahead” but although I have got a lot of things on my “to do” list completed, I certainly wasn’t very timely with others!  At this time of year we seem to be hurtling fast towards the holiday season and I am enjoying myself so much outside in the beautiful weather that before I know it we are in November and I am left wondering whatever happened to October!

A few leaves are falling but the grass is still green and there is plenty of color to enjoy.

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Firethorn on the courtyard wall is covered in berries which are turning from orange to red.

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My two big clumps of Leonotis are fiery orange right now in the front bed

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Its such a dramatic plant and blends well with the yellow Thryallis and purple Mexican Petunia out there.

Cosmos Bright Lights which I sowed as seeds in September are flourishing and have been nice to pick each day.

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The Calendula or pot marigolds are also getting big and I shall be interested to see when they will flower – either winter if it is mild or very early spring if not.  It’s the first time I have tried them in Florida so I will just have to see.

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Batchelors Buttons are also growing well in an adjacent planter and need to be thinned.  It’s fun to try some of the English annuals and I love all these cottage flowers.

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Many of the Camellia Sasanqua are starting to flower now.  They are so majestic and I love how they give such wonderful color at this time of year.

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This one is a Japonica, Pink Perfection, and flowering early.

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More and more buds are opening each day.

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Camellia Daydream

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The later flowering Camellia Japonica are not far behind and their buds are starting to swell.

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The Florida Cracker Rose or Louis Phillippe is putting on quite a show too.  It is such a sweet rose which survives on complete neglect and suddenly pops out all these cherry red blooms under one of the old palm trees.

So…my list,

The pond got its annual clean out, the water lilies cut back and tidied.

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At least we can see the fish now!  We used to have a wonderful collection of Koi fish, in fact we had two collections but they would mysteriously disappear overnight….the culprit?  Not herons, raccoons or even the bear, but otters!  We would never have known had we not seen what looked like a black torpedo chasing the fish early one morning.  So now we just have a few goldfish and who knows how long they will survive….

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I like to hear the sound of water in the garden, its cool and refreshing on a warm day.

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Amaryllis bulbs for the house were planted up to.  I love to have these in different containers and stagger the planting so I have some early and others later, even after Christmas when the garden is a little dull.

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These ones were planted into terrariums filled with pebbles and anything decorative I could find, bark, moss, lichen covered twigs – even an air plant from a tree!

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Filled to the bottom of the bulb with water, they are now inside and starting to sprout.  I’ll plant a few more up in the weeks to come.

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Paperwhites also got put into bowls this week and should be flowering in about 6 weeks.

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So what didn’t get done?…I was too late planting tulip and crocus bulbs up into pots.  These need a long period of cooling which is impossible in Florida so they have to be planted up and placed in a refrigerator.  This takes a minimum of 12 weeks so I definitely won’t have any for Christmas or even January for that matter, more likely by the end of February.

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I meant to get a lot more flower seeds planted too, just different things I wanted to try for next year and that list gets longer and longer and the space to grow them all gets smaller and smaller! I will try to get some of those started in the next couple of weeks as well as planting up some more pots and containers with winter annuals.

 My list is ever blooming!

Oliver has been busy too….organizing the 1st Annual Grey Tabby Gardens Turkey Hunt!

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25 thoughts on “November…already?

  1. As usual, just a beautiful post! I wish I had thought to sow flower seeds back in September, your cosmos are gorgeous. And all those beauties potted up for inside, you are really on top of things!
    I’m a huge fan of camellias, and yours are all just lovely.
    Kate, your property has such a peaceful quality about it, perfectly serene. Oliver too, I don’t think the turkeys have anything to worry about. Enjoy your beautiful space, thanks for sharing.

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    1. Janice – I really do appreciate your lovely comments, especially coming from such a wonderful gardener as you. Thank you so much! I really do enjoy working outside as I know you do too. Planting different flower seeds this fall was definitely an experiment but I felt it made sense to try and I will continue with different types. I love being able to pick things for a vase!

      Have a wonderful week! Thanks again 🙂

      -Kate

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  2. What a great post! I love all of your blooms and seeing your bulbs, etc. growing and on display in your lovely home.

    Oliver and the turkeys made a fun photo.

    Love your waterfall and pond.

    Happy November ~ FlowerLady

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    1. Thank you so much! I really appreciate your sweet comments. Isn’t that cat just such a goof ball?? I don’t know what he was thinking getting in the middle of all those silly birds but he was certainly enjoying getting them all worked up!

      Have a lovely week.

      – Kate

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  3. This is such a lovely post, you have so much going on and each photograph is beautiful. You have made me realise too how behind I am and you have spurred me on to at least plant up the bulbs I have still in bags!

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    1. Hi Julie! Thank you so much for visiting and for your lovely comments. I still have plenty of things to get out and seeds to plant – I think its just the time of year where everything is just busy with everything else we have to do and Christmas coming that its just so easy to lose track of time. If I was more organized I would keep a notebook with a proper plan! I so admire people who do that….sadly I’m not one of them! LOL!
      Thanks again and look forward to seeing more of your beautiful bird photos 🙂

      – Kate

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  4. Oh my, Oliver organizing a turkey hunt! Tell Oliver to include those otters on the hunt. I have those orange Cosmos that I plant in the spring and then save seeds for next year. Had No Idea I could plant them in the fall, too. I consider purple Mexican Petunia to be an invasive. I’m still trying to kill the stuff.

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    1. Oh goodness – what a crazy cat!! He was out there causing chaos! As much as I love to see otters it’s really sad that on two occasions they have stripped out my pond. They are just too smart and can bite through netting – we have tried everything. So now we just have inexpensive gold fish and hope that they make it through a year! 😦 Its the first time I have tried growing cut flowers in the the fall and it seems to be suiting them so I am going to experiment with others. I agree with you on the Mexican Petunia – it is a thug but where I have it the deer and the lawn mower seem to keep it in check!

      -Kate

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  5. Agh, I wasn’t through talking! I keep my amaryllis in the ground every year — none in the house. Just not that energetic, I guess. What is the green mossy stuff you put over the paperwhites – is it from your yard or the store? Envious of your beautiful waterfall.

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    1. Hi there! Thank you…I love that waterfall too as its nice to have that sound out in the garden. I wish I had more moss in the garden – lots of Spanish moss but just not the green stuff. That was actually a bag I picked up at Michaels – I’m not sure that it is even the real deal although from a distance you can’t really tell!

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  6. Love the pictures! Bachelor’s Buttons were the first flowers I ever purchased without knowing that they were so invasive and hardy! They are still blooming for me!

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    1. Thank you!! Im trying all kinds of different cut flowers/English annuals this year just to see what I can get to thrive! i just love being able to go out and cut some things for a vase. I’m always the green eyed monster when I visit my sister in England as she grows so many wonderful things to cut and arrange, so I have been inspired this year to experiment a little more. I’m going to try planting some sweet peas soon as I would just love to be able to pick even a small bunch of those. They probably do really well for you in your climate?

      – Kate

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  7. Looks like a gorgeous time of year in the garden there, Kate – much more full of life (animal and plant) than ours, though we are getting our winter birds, etc. in now. Your photo of Leonotis in full bloom makes me even more pleased that I went ahead and purchased one 🙂 Love the shot of Florida Cracker Rose, and your camellias are splendid. Your status on bulbs and seeds is a little ahead of mine – only a few sweet peas so far as the wind flipped over my starts of love-in-a-mist – one seedling may make it yet…! Seeing all your wonderful Amaryllis planted up makes me think I should get braver than my one per year, and I may now that I find they can be grown outside here. I’ve never had much luck carrying them on indoors to a second year, but perhaps in the garden they would have a chance… Have you ever grown H. papilio? I tried it under grow lights for two or three years but never a flower. Any advice would be appreciated!

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    1. Hi Amy! It is getting to be lovely now down here in Florida, but somehow I would have thought you would be getting some cooler and perhaps wetter days which would green things up? I’m so glad you got hold of a Leonotis! I wish they were more readily available here as I had to hunt around. I’ll be really interested to see how it holds up for you. I took a few cuttings this year which seemed to root easily, just in case I ever lose mine to a freeze…You never know in Central Florida just how cold it might get. I’m using a lot of the Amaryllis in the house now as they are so nice and the color varieties are so pretty. Planting them outside when they are done is great and they seem to thrive and bloom away happily. I had to look up the H. papilio – its gorgeous!! I’m tempted to try one now, although from what I have read it seems hard to find. How strange that it wouldn’t flower and its obviously not a bulb that needs chilling…I wonder if its a bulb that needs to be more mature before it flowers? Perhaps just keep going with it and see….I will research some more!

      As always I just adore all your wonderful photos!

      – Kate

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      1. Yes, all the pictures I’ve seen of H. papilio make my mouth water! You’re probably right about the maturity because I’ve read that it may not flower the first year. But I did think it should have obliged by the second! Mine was purchased from McClure and Zimmerman, who have proved to be a good source for ‘specialty’ bulbs. The only difficulty is scheduling the shipping since they’re in Wisconsin and can’t ship tender bulbs as early in the year as I would like!

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  8. You have such a beautiful garden! I wish I could get on with my garden ‘to-do’ list. It’s raining such a lot at present and I have such a lot of things to do indoors. Your camellias are gorgeous! I wish I could grow them here but we don’t have anywhere sheltered enough for them. That waterfall….!! Clare

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    1. Hi Clare! Thank you so much for your sweet comments. I must admit we should soon be getting to that gorgeous time of year here where we get very little rain, brisk mornings and warm daytime temperatures. After a long, hot and humid summer it is very welcome. Such a shame that you have had all that rain…very annoying when you have things to do, especially with the shorter days. I hope the sunshine returns soon! As always, I do enjoy reading about all your lovely walking adventures and I am so glad I found your blog on the other side of the pond!

      – Kate

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  9. Seriously! That cat lays there and allows the turkeys to walk all around him?! What does he think he is, a turkey farmer? Your pond and waterfall is remarkable. It seems that your garden contains all the elements of a knock-your-socks-off, fabulous space! Love your camellias!

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    1. Hi Deb! It was the funniest thing to watch – that cat just thinks too much of himself! Thank you so much for your extremely kind and generous comments…I really appreciate it 😊❤️

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  10. Oh, Kate – your waterfall and pond are so lovely! Just like your entire property and home. I love the sound of falling water…so peaceful! Well, those pesky otters, lol! So cute and fun to watch, but I can only imagine they are having such fun fishing in your pond. And if it wasn’t them, it would probably be one of the other friends that visit. I haven’t seen bachelor buttons since my childhood. I remember they were a favorite we used to grow. I love their beautiful blue. The cosmos too – love them! Enjoyed seeing your bulbs and thank you for the reminder – completely slipped my mind to order them. The garden centers here sell out immediately. Hope you are having a wonderful week!

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    1. Hi Lynn, Your comments are always so kind and generous and I really do appreciate them! Xx
      We were so surprised to find it was otters behind the koi disappearance….I thought for sure it was a heron and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing when I first saw it! It was not happy to see me and hissed at me! Although beautiful, I wouldn’t want to get too close!
      Hope you are doing well.
      -Kate

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  11. I so enjoyed hearing about your latest gardening exploits and seeing your beautiful garden, you’ve made a little piece of heaven in Florida! The wildlife must think so too judging by the butterfly and newt in your pond photos, Oliver’s turkeys AND an otter!. Loved the amaryllis in terrariums too, I’m a bit late for that this year but will put it on the list for next, yours already look wonderful and I hope you’ll post pictures of them when they’re in flower. Thank you for sharing your stories, loved every word and picture.

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    1. Hi Viv! You are just so sweet! Thank you SO much! I really do enjoy my garden and trying different things! I certainly get some interesting wildlife don’t I ? Some more welcome than others! Oliver was being a little monkey that day , chasing those turkeys and making them gobble! They kept coming back for more…silly things! I will def put some pictures of the amaryllis up…hopefully some wayward cat won’t knock them over! Thanks again, I really appreciate your kind comments.
      Xx

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