The Fall is such a wonderful time of year for gardeners in Southern California. It is the best time of year to plant almost anything other than tropicals since the soil is still warm, the air is still mild (or at least in theory) and the rainy season is on its way. Plants like trees, shrubs and perennials planted in the fall have a chance to establish their root systems in the warm soil before the spring growing season starts, giving them a distinct head start. However we have been having such hot weather along with the continuing drought, it has just not been the right conditions for doing any planting yet. This hasn't kept me away from the nurseries though, as I dream of cooler days to come.
Instead of bringing home plants doomed to struggle in the heat, I decided to enhance my bird friendly accessories in the way of a few pretty new birdhouses and a new feeder to hold nyger seeds. Rodents don't like these bird seeds and since I stopped feeding the birds a few years ago due to the growing population of rats and mice that were making the feeders their local dining preference, I'm hoping this will attract the small songbirds that do like the seeds.
There is something about the light that is especially lovely this time of year. The days are getting shorter, the nights are getting cooler and soon it will be time again to focus on the indoors and family and holidays, but hopefully there will be a window of opportunity to replace many of the plants that have disappeared during this long, hot dry summer, that just couldn't tolerate another year of drought.