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Cathy Coley

By way of Introduction, after a spate

Liveforever beginning to flower a late season bloomer up close

Live-forever beginning to flower, a late season bloomer, up close

Fall used to be my favorite season when I lived in New England for my first 40 years. I knew what to expect by the way the air smelled in the turning of the season. Unless I drive through the hill country of western Virginia or North Carolina, it hasn’t ever lived up to the glorious crayon spectrum of trees since, rolling colors into each other from the early birch yellow to orange red elms and maples to purple oaks and walnuts over a few weeks, before the mid-October rains beat the trees senseless into crisp winter winds.

Mostly, things turn many variations of brown as they slowly dry out after the rainy stretch down here.

I do appreciate the growing season lasting longer, though this summer’s gardening was put off by three surgeries’ lifting and straining bans, and one shoulder being particularly messed up this year, though its original injury happened when I was 29.

Again, I say, next year I will do more and better in the garden. This winter, I plan to strengthen and stabilize yet again, so that I may grow beautiful and edible things in the spring into the long hot Carolina summer.