September 1


September is tied with May as one of my favorite months. Do you love it, too? The gilded sunlight is just lovely. It’s also less humid and hot, thank heavens, which I appreciate as do the roses. September, of course, is the 9th month which is my favorite number (fun fact: I have a “9” tattoo.) It’s also my daughter’s and husband’s birth month so it’s usually a busy one. Madison turns 20 this year!

basye's antiqued filter

I’m hoping for a nice, long autumn so we can get some outdoors-y projects completed before winter. I’d love to do more work on the beds, Jesse wants to tidy up the trees and repair the older windows; there’s the gravel patio to be enlarged yet and I’m crossing fingers for a small section of picket fence to get installed. This, plus all the regular stuff to prepare for colder days! We’re getting another firewood delivery this week and I can’t wait to make our first cozy fire of the season.



We’re hearing that last winter was mild, so we’re still not sure what a “typical” winter in the WNC mountains is like. But is any weather typical anymore? Seems the new normal is extremes. Last January we got just one deep snow and goodness, it was pretty. I have a sneaking suspicion that while last winter was mild, this winter is going to be a doozy. You heard it here first, folks!

vintage german pine cone advent calendar - angel

It’s always around now, as thoughts turn to autumn and winter, that I start planning my Christmas crafts. Last summer, I sold my “Vintage German Pine Cone Advent Calendar” to a lovely reader so I plan to make more just for us–like this little angel one seen here. I do enjoy the delicate miniature work–creating little scenes–and they’re so much fun to make whilst watching my favorite Christmas movies and drinking hot cocoa.

tudor dollhouse

I like miniature things, so it might not come as a surprise that Jesse and I have been building a dollhouse. Yes, one afternoon we said, “You know, let’s take a break from working on the house and do something just for fun.” And what did these two geniuses come up with to get our minds off of renovating our home? We built a smaller house. There is something wrong with our brains. Anyways, here’s a process shot. More to come on that!

sunflowers, biltmore

Last week, we made a quick visit to Biltmore to get outside and stretch our legs. Their sunflowers are so beautiful right now and seem to go on forever! I imagine that when the seeds ripen there will literally be hundreds of birds trying to pick them out.

Coquette de Blanches, Bourbon, 1871

Mme Berkeley, Tea, 1898

pink and red roses, biltmore

The roses didn’t look too shabby, either. International Rose Trials Awards this month!


I love to stop in the garden gift shop when we’re there to get inspiration if nothing else. Isn’t this so cute, how they dressed up this fireplace mantle?

pumpkin vines

pumpkin blossom filled with bees

pumpkin blossom

Back in our little garden, the pumpkin vines are taking over the graveled area. I was loving it until just this morning when I realized all the developing fruits are infested with pickleworm larvae. I never saw this in PA so this is new to me and I’m so cross. It’s too late in the game now, so I’m just going to pull all the vines today and be done with it. Bother, bother, treble bother!

apple blossom snapdragons

claire austin in hand

cosmos in late august

dainty bess and pumpkins

garden in late august

hand-sown delphinium

In happier news, the rest of the garden is doing ok. I started those Delphinium from seed last February so it’s super exciting to see them in bloom! Our property is just shy of 1 acre, with maybe only an 1/8-1/4 of it cultivated. Of that part, I spend most of my time in this section of garden, probably because it gets the most sun and I love the crunch of the gravel beneath my feet. Plus, even after a heavy rain the nearby plants are still clean as a whistle! It’s kind of wonderful and I think I’m becoming gravel-obsessed.

zaide in late august

strawberry hill late august blooms

strawberry hill in late august

julia late august

james galway late august

James Galway in hand

benjamin britten late august

cornelia in late august

Speaking of roses, here are a few of them in bloom: Zaide, Strawberry Hill, Julia Child, James Galway, Benjamin Britten, Cornelia. (Follow me on IG to see the full complement.) Following are some of the other flowers blooming right now…

helenium and caryopterisHelenium and Caryopteris: two must-have perennials for pollinators!

morning glories late augustMorning glories from seeds sent to me from my mom’s garden

rudbeckia 'little henry'Love the quilled petals on Rudbeckia ‘Little Henry’

phlox late augustThe last of the Phlox. I was never really a fan of this flower until now. Pinching back by half last May made all the difference in how much I like it! It looks so much better this year.

dahlia sonic bloomAnd last but not least, another photo of Dahlia ‘Sonic Bloom’

Happy September to you!

cactus flowered zinnias

16 thoughts on “September 1

  1. One of my favorite posts! Everything from windows to gravel to picket fences (yes!), and a doll house and Biltmore blossoms to what we’re accustomed to … your gorgeous photography in the garden. You must lead a charmed life to be able to do so much in so little time. And, I have to add, you don’t look much more than 20, yourself!

    1. Oh hooray! I sometimes think my posts are insanely yawn-worthy so that makes me happy you liked it. And gosh, thank you for the compliment, you’re too kind! 😀

  2. All of your flowers are looking amazing! And Dainty Bess, man – what a neat rose! Hope you guys have a great holiday weekend!

    1. Hi Cole, I hope you had a nice weekend, too. Dainty Bess is such a beautiful rose and I’m hoping she gets her act together so I can keep her. (Blackspot and lack of vigor woes.)

  3. Have been following your blog for some time. You shot beautiful beautiful pictures! And you grow beautiful roses. Just wondering do you spray roses with pesticides? My roses have been destroyed by pests. And what camera do you use for your pictures? (I know that skills are more important, but I love the colors and sharpness!)

    1. Hi Sherry, thank you so much, that is very kind!

      Most of the photos here were taken on a Nikon D7000 with a Nikkor 35mm or 50mm lens. The real macro stuff I use a Tamron lens. I also often just use my handy iPhone for a lot of these!

      No, I don’t use pesticides or fungicides on my roses. Actually, if you’re interested, I talk more about that in this post. My roses aren’t perfect, though, by any stretch. We have some that get a little blackspot and sometimes the leaves are a bit chewed from insects and what not but they’re good enough for me. 🙂 Hope this helps!

  4. Thank you so much for all this information, I’m so glad I’ve found your page. It’s really amazing…photos are super ! I’m new to the rose world, i’m buying some new roses this winter, and your information has been really helpful. Keep up with the good work.
    By the way I’m from across the ocean, I’ve a garden in Portugal. My main interest is gardening with perenial plants and new combinations of plants, but recently I’ve discovered the love of roses.

    best wishes

    1. Hi Nora! That’s ‘Claire Austin’. Do you grow this rose? I’m finding it to be a nice addition to our garden. Starts out creamy white with yellow tinge. Disease resistant, too!

      1. I haven’t– I heard good things from David Austin, but bad things from other growers on the web. Do you find that the blooms shatter? How’s the scent. For a white rose, I had settled on Windemere, but I could be swayed by that shot 🙂

        1. We’re having a very hot summer and I’m seeing the blooms open and drop very quickly. They don’t shatter as quickly as, say, Heritage, but they haven’t been lasting as long as some of my other Austin’s in this heat. (I’d say it’s more comparable to Lady of Shalott.) The scent is wonderful! Also, I’m finding the leaves to be pretty disease resistant. Again, first year in, but so far so good. 🙂

Comments are closed.