Late Summer

This is what the garden looks like in the last weeks of August, as summer goes through its last gasps before surrendering to the encroaching autumn. It's a bit schizophrenic, with signs of summer full on in parts and the unmistakable  hues of autumn showing up elsewhere in the garden. The crape myrtles (Lagerstroemia indica), which used to be impossible to grow here on the northeast but now show up in almost every sunny corner of Brooklyn - a definite sign of global warming - are blooming gloriously. The hum of the cicadas is almost deafening. The bees are still feasting on the nectar of whatever blooms there are. But the roses look tired and shabby from the incessant heat, most of the blossoms having turned into plump and juicy rose hips. The hydrangeas are almost completely faded, their petals wearing wafer thin, all the better to look at with the light through them. But just when everything looks utterly exhausted in the garden, Japanese anemones are starting to bloom, showing off their magnificently delicate flowers. Nothing else can compete with them. And so they will deliver us into September, when the nights will be cooler, the sun will rise later, and soon we'll have to put on sweaters.

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