I’ve been waiting for the asters to bloom before putting up a new garden update. Finally, they did this weekend! Last Friday brought such chilly temperatures that I actually needed to turn on the cozy fire while writing in my morning journal:
Those cold temps meant one struggling tomato plant gave up the ghost and got replaced by more chard, spinach and golden beet seeds. The lettuce I planted a couple weeks ago is also enjoying the cooler weather — good thing, too, because all my other lettuce has gone to seed!
In addition to those glorious mums, the nasturtiums have filled their beds with gorgeous hints of autumn:
The impatiens look so much happier with some cooler days, as well. You can see them here next to more mature beet greens and some parsley. It’s been a bumper summer for parsley! I’ll need to figure out how best to freeze herbs, because the parsley this year has gone gangbusters.
The lone Autumn Beauty sunflower stowaway from Goshen so wants to bloom, but continues its shyness even today:
When it finally does bloom, I think it will match that purple maple, with hints of red, as well. The asters finally bloomed, so I have high hopes for this sunflower, visible right from the front window, too.
Wildlife continues around here, but I’m happy to report no groundhogs. The day I posted about the cat napping with me on the back porch, the larger groundhog, Kalamazoo Kal, reappeared after 10 days of no show. At first he just ate clover, and I thought, “Oh, should I just let him nibble?” Just at that moment, he glanced up and apparently noticed the backyard hostas for the first time ever. I could literally hear him think, “Hostas!!!! Yum!” and he immediately ran faster than you’d think a groundhog could run, directly towards the hostas, right under our back window.
And so, Kalamazoo Kal got the boot. Or in this case the window. I opened and closed the window, and he dashed away, never to be seen again. The cat came back the next day, and this morning I noticed we have a second, smaller kitty patrol for the days when my black and white friend makes rounds elsewhere. In any case, I’m happy to report that the pepper and coreopsis plants Kal had previously decimated have both recovered enough to fruit and/or flower:
That hummingbird mint above is also true to its name: I saw a hummingbird on Friday, as well as an eagle high above a native plant garden across the street. I also heard an owl land on our roof right above me last week, along with frequent flyovers of crows, hawks and geese. No shortage of wildlife here!
The front yard garden temporarily attracted a young bunny, but Ms. Rabbit got a little too aggressive with my tomatoes. Really?! Just one bite out of five of them? Gross. Soooo, I asked the cat to scent the front garden again, and I’ve not seen anymore damage to my crops. The bunnies are welcome to nibble on dandelions and chew down the grasses that I really need to weed out of the vinca/strawberry/thyme/clover beds. Really, have at it on the weedy ground! I just draw the line at sampling my tomatoes to the point of un-usability. Our counter currently has about 20 green ones pre-harvested just so we get some.
In any case, life continues transitioning from late summer into fall. The air feels crisp, and the backyard pots have sprouts of arugula, chard and lettuce, too. Garlic season approaches, along with daffodils, ornamental alliums, more irises, day lilies and fritillaria. I’m not entirely sure how I’ll get those hundreds of bulbs planted. In addition to the groundhog guidance to grow a smaller garden, a bizarre injury/kundalini expansion/magical discipline has reined in my normally huge garden ambitions and “forced” me to get a jump start on major research for future novels. It’s a neck injury, but it expresses as pain in my higher dimensional heart chakra.
I’m fine, so long as I avoid three particular motions, all of which get used frequently when gardening. Meanwhile, I can work out on exercise equipment in our basement with no problem, walk around the neighborhood with no issues, and do anything related to writing. If I get over-ambitious with the gardening, though, whammo! I get a huge ahem from my neck and chest. My chiropractor friend tells me that it’s a deep tissue injury that normally would be causing a lot more issues than it is. I attribute the minimal impact to the HUGE transition this move has been and continues to be for us.
David and I had set very clear intentions of how our lives would shift. I even made sigils to encode and support those intentions, and the level of guidance and synchronicities during this whole process have been off the charts, including all the shamanic gardening experiences. We are still in process of a great sea change. Anything I do moving in the new direction feels fine, strong, supported. Anytime I make a habitual turn towards something lovely that no longer serves a purpose in our lives, the “injury” stops me in my tracks.
I can feel my higher heart chakra — the area between the usual heart chakra and throat chakra — getting a complete reboot. In fact, the main thing that provides relief is wearing moldavite, a potent stone I also needed to wear for several months straight after a kundalini “injury” to my sacrum back in 2010, when I was also making a huge life change after my divorce but pre-David. I was painting portal doors in Chicago then, and our recent move feels like another huge revelation of how those doors have opened to real life. My biggest shift seems to be from urban farming to kitchen gardening, transitioning all the newly available time and energy towards research and writing.
I’ll share more some other time, as I’m also in the midst of some yet to be determined physical changes, including appearance. In one of those winks from above, my “injury” has forced David and me to switch sides of the bed, which means I literally wake up on the other side of the bed each day. From big to seemingly insignificant but symbolic shifts, we both feel carried along by change that flows steadily, though incrementally on. Whenever we catch our breaths, we realize just how fast the water’s moving and feel ever so grateful for this journey!
Blessed Be … and be the blessing.