October 17, 2020

A Vibrant End to the Growing Season

asters and goldenrod

It's been a colorful October...

prairie plants at dog park

...starting with the bright pastels of the New World asters and the goldenrods, brightening up the prairies with colors that seemed unreal in their vibrance, like a child's watercolor painting.

zinnias 1



zinnias 2

The annuals in the cutting garden seemed to glow, too, including cultivars of Zinnias, Cosmos, and Angelonias.

monarch 1

monarch 3

monarch 6

About a week ago, when I thought the monarchs were long gone, I saw one floating on the breeze and then landing on the Mexican sunflowers (Tithonia rotundifolia 'Goldfinger'). The light was pleasant as the butterfly seemed at home on the bright orange blooms.

maple leaves

maple leaf




wild parsnip

A hike this past week at the nearby state park shared its beauty of the warm maple foliage, rainbow-colored grasses, and a few remaining blooming forbs, including the lovely, but toxic-to-humans Wild Parsnip (Pastinaca sativa).

maple trees

Now, mid-month we've hit peak fall color and the maples are aflame.

This is one of the most beautiful months of the year in my part of the world. The autumn season is too short, but it pops with color just before the freezing temperatures and winds take out what's left before winter sets in. I'm trying to live in the moment.


  1. Everything looks so nice. Makes me happy to see it. Everything here looks dull and drupey due to the drought. I am so looking forward to some rain that might bring my thinking into a more positive wave.

    1. We had dry weather for a few weeks this summer, but then too much rain. And more recently, a moderate amount. That does make a big difference! I hope you will have a good amount of rain in the weeks ahead.

  2. Fabulous fall photos! I love the vibrant meadow. Great colors!

    1. Thanks, Karin. Sometimes the colors really amaze me--especially when the light hits things at interesting angles. :)

  3. It's beautiful in your part of the country, Beth. I can feel the change of season in your photos. I love that Angelonia.

    1. Thanks, yes, we definitely have the four distinct seasons. Winter is wayyyy too long, but I really like the other three. I didn't realize until recently that Angelonia is a New World plant. Love it!

  4. It is an especially good year for fall color and you've certainly captured a beautiful array of it.

    1. Thanks, Linda. Yes, the fall color is lovely--a little uneven, but lovely this year. :)

  5. Hi Beth, your fall color really outshines ours in Oklahoma this year. It has been so dry this fall. Summer was wet though. I'm enjoying the prairie and taking in cuttings. The circle goes round and round again. :) Happy Bloom Day!~~Dee

    1. Thanks, Dee. Yes, indeed, on and on we go. ;-) Every year and every day is different, which makes it all interesting and a blessing with each new adventure, right?

  6. Beth, this is such an uplifting post. Wonderful views of your autumnal joys. Angelonia is a great summer annual.

  7. Hi Beth, I agree, Autumn seems to be the shortest of the seasons here in Wisconsin. We had snow this past weekend and more to come.

  8. What a beautiful set of photographs to capture all the colours of autumn. I think we especially love this time of year that seems so short and glorious because we know that what follows can be a long-drawn-out period of cold and misery!


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