It's November! Yet, some of the plants in the garden don't seem to know it. I took a stroll past the neighboring plots to see what's still holding on. First up: tiny yellow tomatoes!
and some chili peppers...
And ornamental kale (I think...)
Some kind of pumpkin...or squash?
And another squash.... This plant had GIANT leaves obscuring the fruit all summer. The plot was not well-tended and became completely overgrown. It's nice to finally see what was growing there!
This little rose is way past its prime...but how lovely!
I think this is some kind of weed, but again...how lovely!
And finally, it is the season for MUMS!! Here's a spectacular patch:
And a spectacular close-up!
I checked on the garden this morning and was quite surprised to find...broccoli! Well, a broccoli sprout, anyway. The bunnies (or somebody) ate the initial sprouts some weeks ago...this must have been a late-sprouting seed. There's not enough time left in the season to grow actual broccoli, but it's always nice when you see nature trying.
The cabbage sprouts are coming along slowly...I definitely don't think I'll be eating any cabbage this fall.
The kale, on the other hand, looks promising!
And on my way back home I spotted this bright red leaf on an otherwise green hedge. I hate to say it, but it makes me think of Christmas.
I couldn't imagine where that single, red leaf came from...until I turned around. Duh.
Obviously, this is not a photo of my garden - but isn't it gorgeous? Today was a rare, 70-degree October day, and I had an occasion to go up to Kenosha, Wisconsin this morning. The fall colors are BEYOND incredibly magnificent right now, so I decided to take the long way home.
The long way home is a winding road that makes its way through several very well-to-do Chicago suburbs along the north shore of Lake Michigan. This is a public side street that quickly ends in private property.
And here's the house that's just to the left of the view above. (I know, I should have taken a panoramic shot!) It's impossible to see from here, but I'd bet a million dollars that fabulous porch wraps around to the east side of the house and overlooks the water.
Even if I had millions of dollars, I wouldn't want to deal with the mortgage, property taxes, insurance bill or maintenance tasks that come with a property like this - but it's always nice to stop and daydream for a minute!
Okay, back to reality and my little park-district-owned rental plot. The gorgeous sun and blue sky made the garden look every bit as glorious as the fancy north shore estates.
And check out all of this orangeness!!
Officially picked - here's my pumpkin off of the vine!
At 9 inches tall, it's not very big, but it's a pretty good result for a first-time gardener, I think. And apparently, the stem makes a pretty good chin scratcher as well!
As I was walking across the park to the garden this morning, I couldn't help but notice the lovely mosaic of leaves beneath my feet. The colors are just gorgeous, and of course, the leaves made that satisfying "crunch" sound when I walked on them.
It was also the first chilly, blustery day that really felt like fall. The gray sky looked a bit ominous, but it contrasted beautifully against the green and gold leaves of the trees. Hello, autumn!
Despite the persistent blossom rot, I'm encouraged by the fact that the Sugar Pie keeps trying...
and even managed to get pollinated!
But a pollinated pumpkin is not supposed to turn yellow like this....and what's up with the - bite mark?! Somebody clearly does not want me to make a pie this year.
And you can see that the Jack O'Lantern vines have started to yellow as well. I'm pretty sure it's done growing, but I'm going to leave it on the vine a little while longer, just in case.
Here we are, about half way through October and my little acorn squash is still hanging on...
The cabbage has grown somewhat (though it doesn't really look like cabbage.)
The kale is coming along...
And the marigolds just. won't. quit!! (Even the orange ones came back for one last huurah!)
Here's the wide view, which I haven't posted in a while. Though it's all starting to decay, it's still kind of pretty - and I love that my little orange pumpkin is now visible from a distance. :)
This post should be titled, "Further Evidence in the Case Against Pie." As you can see, the Sugar Pie leaves are starting to yellow again...
The female flowers are shriveling up before they can be pollinated...
and "blossom rot" is settling in.
The only bright spot is that my Jack O'Lantern has turned mostly orange--and I still have about 3 weeks until Halloween!
Finally...my kale has grown enough that it actually looks like...kale!
Unfortunately, I can't say the same for my broccoli or cabbage, so we'll skip those photos this week. It's hard to believe it's October already - and that flowers are still blooming on neighboring plots. Check out this lovely hydrangea:
and this...morning glory?! I think that's what it is. I don't recall ever seeing a pentagon-shaped flower before, but maybe it's because I simply never really paid attention to such things before now. It pays to pay attention!
Okay, so I have about a month left until Halloween and about 7 weeks until Thanksgiving. My Sugar Pie vines keep trying...
but sadly, my little pumpkins don't get very far until they rot and fall off. The forecast for homemade pumpkin pie this year is NOT good.
My Jack O'Lantern is coming along, but it's still pretty puny...
compared to the plethora of pumpkins that are in stores everywhere now! Last year, a relatively small pumpkin was $8 or $9 at the grocery store. Obviously, with the hot summer we had, it was a great year for pumpkins and stores are practically giving them away. These giants at Whole Foods are only $5 bucks! But they're not nearly as cute as my mostly-green pumpkin, which can always be carved into Frankenstein if it doesn't turn fully orange.