The day the musa died

With apologies to my most persistent earworm, this is a momentous morning. There was an odd feeling about yesterday. I did some digging. I was looking at the lumps and thinking that frost would break them up. But not for a while. And I cut the grass, watching for the slender spikes of lilac that would mean that Crocus speciosus would be about to bloom. And I looked at the salvias and admired them. I passed by the dahlias. The tubers were not delivered till June and they had a poor start. Some have bloomed by not all. Will I see flowers this summer I wondered.

Then, last night I looked up at the stars in the crystal clear night. As I watch more documentaries about the universe I find I am less reassured about our place on this spinning rock and more terrified as I look up at the infinite freezing vacuum of space. The thin veneer of warmth around the earth was being sucked away even as I watched.

And so, this morning, as expected, I awoke to a frost. It is no surprise that, at Kate’s Bridge in Northern Ireland, the coldest place in the British Isles, it was -3c, the coldest September night on record. Here it was -2c.

According to research, because of global warming, the frost-free period, the growing season, is lengthening all over the world, by about 10 days in the US and similarly in Europe. But not here.

This year we have had 137 days without frost, hardly enough to grow tender plants outside. Usually the first frost of autumn is early November. After the end of the first week of November we are on borrowed time.

But this is really upsetting.

I know most plants will survive, though my poor salvias have probably had it, left out for too long. It makes me wonder if they are worth bothering with if they can only be outside for three months.

The good new is that, despite my misleading title, I planted the banana in the most sheltered spot I have, with overhead trees and it is fine – so far.

,

9 Comments on “The day the musa died”

  1. mitzybricker
    September 27, 2020 at 11:34 am #

    We have had a frost too!

    Blue Rock Horses Frederick County, Virginia bluerockhorses.com

  2. Andrea Godkin
    September 27, 2020 at 1:02 pm #

    Geoff, Where did you purchase your Banana plant from?

    • thebikinggardener
      September 27, 2020 at 1:28 pm #

      It is Must banjo, the hardiest of the mush. I can’t remember where I got it now but it is widely available and I am pretty sure that both Springmount and Beechdale have them in stock at the moment if you are in Wexford

  3. tonytomeo
    September 28, 2020 at 3:18 am #

    In some climates, bananas get frosted to the ground, and then regenerate from the rhizomes annually. Some types spread over the years. However, some may not spread, but only replace themselves with one or two new trunks, and then die out within only a few years. I do not grow them (here) because they do not get frosted suddenly, but instead deteriorate for a long time, and need to be cut down while still viable. I will grow them again eventually.

  4. digwithdorris
    September 28, 2020 at 5:26 pm #

    If you can resist cutting back the brown stalks of the salvias and mulch the base of plant it might revive next spring

    • thebikinggardener
      September 30, 2020 at 9:45 am #

      I think I may carefully dig them up and put them in the polytunnel – they survived in there last year. I am a bit late to take cuttings but I will take a few too.

  5. Paddy Tobin
    September 30, 2020 at 9:40 am #

    Yes, frost and autumn are well in and we are allowing the garden to die down naturally – less dead-heading and preening and just leaving things take their natural course until we decide it is time to clear it all up before winter really hits.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sweetgum and Pines

gardening in the North Carolina piedmont

Ravenscourt Gardens

Learning life's lessons in the garden!

RMW: the blog

Roslyn's photography, art, cats, exploring, writing, life

Paddy Tobin, An Irish Gardener

Our garden, gardens visited, occasional thoughts and book reviews

AltroVerde

un altro blog sul giardinaggio...

vegetablurb

four decades of organic vegetable gardening and barely a clue

The Long Garden Path

A walk round the Estate!

Flowery Prose

Welcome to Flowery Prose! Growing words about gardening, writing, and outdoors pursuits in Alberta, Canada.

ontheedgegardening

Gardening on the edge of a cliff

Uprooted Magnolia

I'm Leah, a freelance Photographer born and raised in Macon, GA, USA. I spent 8 years in the wild west and this is my photo journal on life, love, and the spirit of Wyoming. Welcome to Uprooted Magnolia.

Interesting Literature

A Library of Literary Interestingness

Garden Variety

A Gardening, Outdoor Lifestyle and Organic Food & Drink Blog

For the Love of Iris

Articles, Tips and Notes from Schreiner's Iris Gardens

One Bean Row

Words and pictures from an Irish garden by Jane Powers

Plant Heritage

We are working to conserve the nations garden plants for people to use and enjoy today and tomorrow

HERITAGE IRISES

An English persons experience of living and gardening in Ireland

%d bloggers like this: