the equinox

Greetings and salutations everyone; yes, once again it is I, Chess the purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, and here to bring you the latest news, no matter how unexciting, from our garden. You may remember me from such posts where I tried to make things much more exciting than they really were, like “I Don’t Get It” and “Gray Day, With Drays”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.14092215Things are pretty much okay with me, now, though I don’t see why it has to keep thundering once we get to the equinox, but the guy I live with says, helpfully, that “it just does”. I’m worried that the thunder will never stop, and that the few nice days we had last week were just an illusion.

I mean, I’m like, just going along, doing something, nothing much in particular, and the sun is shining on me, and all of a sudden it thunders, because I haven’t looked at the whole sky and especially where the dark clouds are, and then I have to run for cover. Or walk for cover, really. My fort is the best place to be when that happens.

After the guy I live with dragged me out of bed this morning, at the ridiculously early hour of 8:30, it started to rain (and not thunder), which is pretty unusual for here. The guy I live with decided to emphasize its unusualness by filming the rain in black and white. If you didn’t think he was a nut before, like I keep saying he is, this should be proof.

The guy I live with also took some pictures in the rain, and some not. The rain stopped after a while, and I got to go on my morning walk. Here are some of the pictures. I know I’ve already posted pictures of these things, but the guy I live with says if I post lots of pictures, people might get the idea that we’re interesting. Some of these are enormously huge files, and can be embiggened, if you want. Some might even be in focus.

the front cactus garden

the front cactus garden


Salvia greggii 'Furman's Red' and the honey mesquite in the side yard.

Salvia greggii ‘Furman’s Red’ and the honey mesquite in the side yard.


the back yard, from the bench under the tree

the back yard

the back yard


looking down the north path, to the "way back"

looking down the north path, to the “way back”

Eupatorium rugosum 'Chocolate' and Sorbus scopulina

Eupatorium rugosum ‘Chocolate’ and Sorbus scopulina

Cyclamen hederifolium in the other side yard (north side)

Cyclamen hederifolium in the other side yard (north side)



Cyclamen hederifolium 'Fairy Wings'

Cyclamen hederifolium ‘Fairy Wings’

Cyclamen confusum

Cyclamen confusum

Oh, and since it’s that time of year again, the baby cactus got moved into the upstairs bedroom. The guy I live with thinks they might be able to stay outside all winter, but they would probably be devoured by rodents.

stuff upstairs

stuff upstairs

the baby cactus

the baby cactus

Well, that’s pretty much it for the equinox. We didn’t really do much of anything, which is how we both like things to be. Oh, one “hugely exciting” thing happened; our neighbors let the guy I live with toss some old pieces of wood and stuff into the dumpster they were renting. He hates having stuff that should be thrown away lying around for a long time.

I guess I’ll let you go. 14092213


Until next time, then.

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12 Responses to the equinox

  1. Diane Lancaster says:

    Hey, Chess. Your yard is looking mighty fine. I’ve been reading about it for a long time, and still enjoy every word!

  2. Hi Chess,

    Lovely post, I really enjoyed reading it. Such a world away from our windswept little island where spring is cranking up very quickly. Great to see the backyard looking very primped. Very pleased the Guy you Live With got the clean up happening. Always a great feeling to get rid of stuff thats hanging around. Cheers, Marcus from Down Under

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; there’s not much of anything more exciting than being able to toss stuff you don’t want to look at any more. A bit of rain last night and this morning, hopefully more crocuses will appear soon.

      • I’m a “lets chuck it out” kinda bloke but my partner is a hoarder. We live in different houses. Funny to think you are gearing up for the autumn crocus while down here the last two for the season, Crocus minimus “Bavella” and C. kosaninii are just hanging on. I really thought C. scardicus was going to do it this season but it’s such miffy thing. I doubt whether it gets going early enough to get a flower pushed out. Had a pot full of seedlings from Pavelka seed, maybe 30, and while I was OS in May and June a wallaby got into the nursery and kicked it to kingdom come. I managed to retrieve a few mangled remains on return and today I was thrilled to see a few little leaves poking through. Cheers, M

      • paridevita says:

        We don’t have too many problems with wallabies here. Squirrels are probably enough, for the guy I live with. They have a habit of tearing apart sempervivums and things like that, not to mention all the other things they do. There are more than a few “spring” crocuses here, which are always done by the time the vernal equinox rolls around, so we are about exactly the opposite here. Trouble with these is robins, who insist on shredding them in hopes to find something; who knows what. So the autumn crocus, which robins seem to ignore, are a better bet. (The “spring” ones get caged for protection; it looks stupid, but it works.) My mommy was kind of a hoarder and the guy I live with occasionally lost his patience with that type of behavior; she would take in things that neighbors were throwing away on the pretext that “they might come in handy some day”, filling up the garage with junk, at which point the guy I live with would drag the stuff out to the street on trash day. In our little neighborhood of 300-some houses there are about four where the car is parked in the garage (where it belongs); ours is one of those.

  3. The dumpster thing, really that is so excellent. I get really agitated when junk accumulates. I need ambiance; junk does not contribute.

  4. Yes, Chess, I know the feeling of having stuff around that should be cleared away. I can feel our garage throbbing right now all the way from the bookroom. Fortunately, Bulky Trash Day is October 6th. Garden trash/detritus gets thrown away immediately, so you can see what my priority is – garden first, and then, *yawn*, house. Your garden is showing off all the work the guy you live with puts into it, and of course your holding down of the lawn. Maturity is a wonderful occurrence in a garden. So is the first plant pop-up of the season. Must say I liked the photos in the last post, especially of the sunset. Forgot to mention it because my attention was so focused on the wad of grass which so lately had been in your stomach, Chess. Happy to know you’re feeling better, except for the thunder rolling. I guess with you lately it’s either tummy rumbles or sky rumbles. Just returned from the last Beach Yoga of the summer in which we did many, many, many sun salutations in honor of the equinox. Too many. I kept the intention in mind that a certain dog has a better autumn and winter and spring than he did a summer, Chess.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; I hope autumn and winter are better, too. The guy I live with was, of course, afraid I was going to expire. The dried grass went to the vet’s in a bag, as Exhibit A. (Well, not really A, because there have been other exhibits, but we won’t go into that.) The reason why the dumpster was such a joy was because some years ago there used to be a big chipper-shredder, the kind that could shred branches three inches in diameter, at least, but one day it stopped working, and the guy I live with spent a lot of time trying to figure out why it stopped working, but his ability in small engine repair is rather limited (actually, non-existent), and so he gave it away. The county had a recycling center where they would accept large branches and stuff like that, but it closed this year. So there were all these branches piled up, and no chipper-shredder. Along came the dumpster; problem solved.

  5. Shocked that rodents eat baby cactus. Garden looks great!

    I have a dog friend named Bella, a Great Pyrenees, who is so scared of thunder that she roots around in the house looking for places to hide and causes all sorts of ruckus, being a very big dog. Her people have found that putting her in a small dark room helps calm her down, if she can still hear their voices. (It’s a little mudroom off the living room where firewood is stored.) Her people are going to the vet to get her some calm-down pills, they told me today. You and Bella could probably share scary thunder stories. Fortunately, we don’t have it as often as you.

    It is pouring rain here and I am very happy as it has been so dry that the soil is like powder.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; rodents do eat any succulent that isn’t too spiny, and I guess the little ones are like jelly beans to them. The guy I live with assures me that this last summer was a highly unusual one, but I think he’s just hoping that it was, and not a sign of some horrible change. I used to get Rescue Remedy sometimes, and I have a Thundershirt, but, strangely enough, it shrank, just lying on the chair in the living room. Thundershirts work pretty well; it’s like being hugged all the time.

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