Valley Gardening: Plants and people benefit from being outside

What a beautiful fall! I’m still working on planting shrubs into Mom’s Garden and also at Society Hall, so the moisture has been absolutely wonderful. And when I look at my flowers, I am kind of amazed that more plants haven’t frosted yet. I know that pumpkins and squash and tomatoes have gotten it, but so many flowers are still going strong.

One of the longest blooming plants EVER this summer is the Silver Lace Vine on the north side of my building. I took pictures of it in full bloom in July and it is still in full bloom today. Right next to it is a climbing rose. Such a pretty fall!

If you have plants that have bugs, you might still be able to take them outside for a day or two, if you keep an eye on the weather. Earlier this summer I took home a huge jade plant that Dorothy Brandt had given me, after Captain John passed away. The jade did great for a couple of years and then it was attacked by mealybugs. Not the end of the world, but a pain in the keester to keep spraying with rubbing alcohol, and bug killer. I took it home and left it outside, and it has flourished. Dorothy has given me a number of other cacti and now that I have been working on our sunroom, I’m thinking I will keep some plants alive at home.

I can certainly understand the shoe-makers’ children having no shoes or the roofer having a leaky roof.  When you work around plants all day, it is a chore to go home and water—even if it only takes half an hour or less. My resolution is to do better and create a lush, (although thorny) greenbelt area in my sunroom. With the cactus and a few blooming geraniums, I should be able to relax and just watch the snow blow. 

A young man (younger than me), Max Duran, came into the store this week for some seeds. His daughter is in a special needs program in Sanford and she is working on an agricultural project with her teacher, Mr. Cary. Max brought Abbi in yesterday, and I have to say I am inspired! She is a young woman, age of 17, who was injured in a car accident in 2003—she was just a toddler! Abbi uses a walker to get around. 

Max and I started talking about accessibility issues for Abbi. When she came in, I asked her if she would help me take an inventory of accessible equipment in the parks in Alamosa. She was willing, and I am thrilled! I have asked the City of Alamosa for ADA playground equipment in every park, and now Abbi can help me explain how important it is. You know….a person really doesn’t understand how important it is, until it is a member of YOUR family who can’t play. Their walker or wheelchair gets stuck in the gravel. No swings that accommodate a wheelchair. Maybe there is equipment and I just don’t know about it—but now Abbi will help educate me—Yahoo!

Although the Durans live in Sanford, they spend much of their time in Alamosa because of jobs, etc.  Hopefully we can go to all towns in the Valley and share what we learn about playgrounds. If anyone out there would like to help with this project, please let me know.

If you have time, please come by the Green Spot next Saturday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. I will have coffee and apple cider and some baked goods (if my friends come through and help me) all available for a donation to the Jaiden Rogers family. Just come by and relax! Relax…and donate a little, if you can.  We will also selling tickets to the spaghetti dinner on the following Saturday, the 21st.