Can you believe summer is over? How did yours go? Mine went pretty well. This was a summer of accomplishments. In the fall of 2021, I planted over 200 tulips. They came up and my front yard looked fantastic. Then in May, I put down an entire bag of grass seed to help eliminate the bare spots that had been in my front yard resulting from having a new roof and front porch rebuilt on my house in 2021. Although the grass didn’t come up as nice as I would like from the seed, the yard did fill in with green.

Since tulips will grow back, I did allow the green leaves to die back a bit before trimming them off about four inches from the ground. Hopefully the tulips stored enough food so they will come back in the spring of 2023. We’ll see and I’ll be sure to let you folks know.

In the fall of 2021, I had saved a lot of the zinnia’s flower heads as they dried up. I overwintered those dried flower heads in a box in my basement. I wanted to see if they would grow, so I crushed the dried flowers over the dirt, added a touch of topsoil, and sure enough, weeks later I began to see little seedlings come up. As the flowers grew, they created a 3- to 4-foot hedge of orange, yellow, pink, and purple flowers. It was so gorgeous to look at. I have again cut off the flower heads after they began to dry and I now have seeds for next year.

I even got my backyard together this year. A friend got rid of the rocks in her yard and I wanted to have rocks in mine, so I made several trips from her house in the south suburbs back to my house with my trunk loaded with bags of white marble rocks. It took several weeks because I had to clean the rocks and dig out the area where I wanted to place them, but I did succeed in having a rock pathway around a brick garden wall that I have in my backyard.

The inground solar lights are cold white, and at night it’s just so gorgeous to see them lit up. I like garden knick-knacks, so I was pleased to find something this year that I had never seen before. Black gnomes! The first one I found was a female chef. Later on I purchased them in a variety of different styles. The store had shelves of Black gnomes on bicycles, doing yoga, taking a selfie, a fireman, police officer, soldier, etc.

Out in far northwest Mundelein, I went into a store and found a garden statue featuring three ladies, including a black one in the middle. I had never in my life spent over a hundred dollars on something to just sit in the yard like that. But I bought it immediately. I got a huge Buddha statue and found the stand for it. Then to balance it all out, I found a gorgeous modern water fountain.

I only planted tomatoes and green peppers this year. The green peppers did pitifully and the tomatoes were so-so. But I think I have enough tomatoes that I’m going to try to make one batch of ketchup.

Winter is coming so, over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be covering things up until next spring.

Boy how time flies!