Goodbye, Plants: Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day October 2015

– Posted in: What's up/blooming

Are you familiar with the children’s picture book Goodnight Moon? In it, a young rabbit says good night to all the objects in his bedroom as a way of settling down to sleep. Frost is predicted for later this week–I marvel that we’ve dodged the bullet this long–and I went around my garden to say goodbye to all the plants that won’t be here after the frost hits them, as a way of settling down to autumn–and what lies beyond.


Goodbye, Mirabilis longiflora.

Your flowers are weird looking but oh-so-fragrant. I will be saving your tuber once again to plant next year. Sleep well.
Mingus Toni dahlia

Goodbye, ‘Mingus Toni’ dahlia.

You didn’t strut your stuff until September, but once you started blooming you were all a gardener could ask for. Hope we can dance sooner next year.
Karma Prospero impostor dahlia

Now that you’ve finally decided to bloom, it’s time to say goodbye, ‘Karma Prospero’ dahlia.

Why? What did you want that I couldn’t give you? And–hey, wait a minute! You don’t even look like ‘Karma Prospero’! Who are you, and what are you doing in my garden?
Sams Club cannas

Goodbye, warehouse store cannas.

You showed me I needed a big statement in the Roadside Bed. I’ll always remember you.
mosaic bird bath

Goodbye, mosaic bird bath.

I know you’re not a plant, but you’ll fall to pieces in the cold. Bringing you inside for the winter is the right thing to do.
non-blooming mandevilla

Goodbye and good riddance, mandevilla.

I rescued you from that abusive gardener, watered you well, provided more spacious living quarters, coddled you all last winter with the sunniest window I had, and gave you my favorite trellis–and for what? Not one bloom, that’s what. Tell your excuses to the compost pile. I’m done with you.
sample plants container

Goodbye, sample plants container.

Frankly, when you three came into my life, I didn’t know what to expect. Campfire™ Fireburst Bidens (courtesy Proven Winners), it’s not you, it’s me. I just don’t know how to pull you through the winter. Tropicanna Gold® canna (courtesy Longfield Gardens), I just know you’ll look great out front next year, so I’m prepared to winter over your rhizomes. Lemon Coral™ sedum (courtesy Proven Winners), your tag said Sedum rupestre, and your cousin ‘Angelina’ is hardy here, so I thought you would be, too. Now they tell me you’re an annual, Sedum mexicanum, but I’m still going to plant you in my warmest microclimate and keep my fingers crossed, because we had a fabulous summer together.
hydrangea foxglove

Goodbye ‘Blue Heaven’ big-leaf hydrangea.

For a Hydrangea macrophylla you’re pretty decent. Looking forward to more blooms next year (hint, hint).
hostas with golden autumn color

Goodbye, hostas.

You were here when I moved in, and we’ve never been properly introduced. I don’t even know your name! And yet, you’ve been so supportive, the foundation of the back garden. I couldn’t do it without you! Enjoy your rest–you’ve earned it. And may I just say?–that color is stunning on you.
Holy Moly Superbells

Goodbye, Holy Moly!™ Superbells®.

Holy Moly!, what fun we’ve had! I’m going to move you to the stone terrace out front so you can linger a little longer.
Jindai aster

Goodbye, ‘Jindai’ Tartarian aster.

My friends all say you’re a great performer, but let’s face it–you’re good-looking, but you just can’t handle frost. I’m going to move you to the front and I hope that helps you bloom earlier (like September). But if that doesn’t do the trick–we might not have a future together.
tall verbena

Goodbye, tall verbena.

You’re a great mingler, and I really appreciate that about you. I expect I’ll see you next year, unless I inadvertently weed out your seedlings. I’m ashamed to say it’s happened before.
dragon wing red begonia

Goodbye, Dragon Wing® Red begonia.

You are really a class act, and you know how to make that deciduous azalea look his best. But I’ve tried to keep your type happy through the winter without much success, so I must bid you adieu. But I know who’s going in that container next year.
seed grown lobelia

Goodbye, seed-grown lobelia.

Lobelia, lobelia, lobelia–what am I going to do with you? It took you the whole growing season to look like something. Next year, forget about seed. I’m buying already blooming plants.

Goodbye, cosmos.

You’re sweet, but slow. Bloom-in-September slow. I should start you indoors, but there’s only so much room under the lights.

Goodbye, zinnia.

I know it wasn’t really hot enough for you, but at least we had rain. Right? Right?
tuberous begonia

Goodbye, tuberous begonia.

Oh my gosh, begonia, look at how you’ve grown! I’ll store your tuber this winter, and next year you’ll be promoted to a hanging basket!

Hello frost, goodbye tender plants everywhere. But there’s still plenty that looks good in my garden even after a frost. I may not have flowers every month of the year, but I have flowers every month there’s not snow on the ground.

Inspired by the words of Elizabeth Lawrence, “We can have flowers nearly every month of the year,” Carol of May Dreams Gardens started Garden Bloggers Bloom Day. On the 15th of every month, garden bloggers from all over the world publish what is currently blooming in their gardens, and leave a link in Mr. Linky and the comments of May Dreams Gardens.

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

If winter is slumber and spring is birth, and summer is life, then autumn rounds out to be reflection. It’s a time of year when the leaves are down and the harvest is in and the perennials are gone. Mother Earth just closed up the drapes on another year and it’s time to reflect on what’s come before.

~Mitchell Burgess in Northern Exposure

Comments on this entry are closed.

Donna@Gardens Eye View October 25, 2015, 11:17 am

I have been away so catching up Kathy. I was surprised we had dodged the frost bullet too, and when I returned there was little damage and many flowers were still blooming. Your garden is stunning in mid-October and I adore that birdbath.

Angie October 19, 2015, 11:00 am

Haha, this post was cute. It reminds me of the book “Goodnight Moon”.

commonweeder October 16, 2015, 11:45 am

What a charming post. I’ve had to say good bye to flowers, but I just yesterday said good bye to a whole new garden. Well, a garden I’ve been working on all summer even though we were not yet moved. But yesterday was the day. I did pay good attention when you started your new garden, which so fabulous now, and how you documented everything. I will try and follow in your footsteps.

Kathy Purdy October 18, 2015, 7:51 pm

I am glad my “new garden” posts have encouraged you as you create your own new garden.

michaele anderson October 16, 2015, 11:33 am

A thoroughly delightful post, Kathy…I smiled the whole way through. Such a fun theme!

Angel October 16, 2015, 9:26 am

I love this post! I really need to bring my potted plants inside for the winter before it’s too late.

Kathy Sturr of the Violet Fern October 16, 2015, 8:07 am

Ha! I loved this post Kathy. I feel like going around and tucking all my plants in now. What fun. You have some gorgeous plants. I hear you on the plants that take work or too long … goodbye! There’s so many out there to try. We are supposed to have frost Saturday and I have company coming so I cannot bring my jungle indoors just yet – the sheets will come out – white like ghosts – it’s Halloween decor, yeah, decoration.

Sofie Vandersmissen October 15, 2015, 10:02 am

You have beautiful flowers in your garden!

Greetings, Sofie #26

Pat Webster October 15, 2015, 9:35 am

Oh, Kathy, too bad your mandevilla vine doesn’t perform — I’ve kept three going inside under lights for three or four years now. They are slow to start blooming — this year I didn’t have a big show until mid August — but they are so cheerful that I couldn’t do without them.

Kathy Purdy October 15, 2015, 2:17 pm

Pat, I didn’t have mine under lights during the winter. That is probably the crucial difference. My seed starting light setup is down in the basement, which I think would be too chilly for the mandevilla. I think I’m still going to give up on this mandevilla and rethink the wintering over setup. Then I’ll pick out a new one and try again.

Joanne Toft October 15, 2015, 8:11 am

We are looking at frost here in Minnesota as well. I am cutting what I can to bring inside for a few days and preparing the garden for the winters sleep. It also means getting those new bulbs in the ground. Sad to see the flowers go but loving the fall leaf change!

Dee Nash October 15, 2015, 7:51 am

Time for the big sleep I guess. Goodnight summer and fall. Hello winter in your part of the world.~~Dee