Monday, August 15, 2011

Dog Days

The Dog Days of Summer in the Northern Hemisphere, officially came to an end last week.

'Dog Days' or 'Canicular' days as they are known, is the period between July 3rd and August 11th, when the Dog Star, Sirius, rises in conjunction with the sun.
Classical Greek and Roman belief was that the combination of the brightest star in the night (Sirius) and the brightest luminary in the day (The Sun) rising together, 
were responsible for the extreme heat that is experienced during the middle part of the Northern Summer.

'Dog Days' end when Sirius returns to the night sky.

The very first sign of the approaching fall days are showing themselves here in the foothills. The nights are staying cool, there is dew in the morning, and the very first leaves are turning.

I have always loved this time of year as summer turns to fall. I love the stillness, the scent of ripening fruit and berries, the hazy afternoons.

This is the time of year when children start to think of returning to school. There is a sense of excitement as they start to prepare, gathering school supplies, new clothes, finding out which class room they are in.

It is also a time to start harvesting abundance from the garden. My herb garden is at it's peak now, and it is time to gather up a few sprigs to dry in anticipation of this winter's stews, sauces and pot pies. Here I have Purple Sage and Golden Oregano.

I have been harvesting these black raspberries for a few weeks now and have two large bags already frozen. They are wild, but I have encouraged them to grow on the edges of my little side yard. This winter Hubby is going to put up a trellis for them so I can tie them up for easier harvesting. They are a variety known as 'Ghost Bramble'. I have only found one reference to them in all the many books I have researched. They grow on pale bluish green 'Ghost' brambles and are quite lovely, but have wicked spines. They are delicately sweet.

I just bought these yarrow and lavender plants to add to my Mother's commemorative garden. I love the gray foliage of the lavender with the rose colored yarrow. The butterflies love the yarrow, although I find the scent rather pungent.

Hubby said to me, 'I bought a little bit of firewood to replenish the wood pile'. Two large truck loads were delivered on Saturday. You can see 'Weenie Baby' has come out to investigate. Can you find her? She blends in fairly well! I was on pet-sitting duty for daughter 'J' this weekend.

The truckloads of wood being delivered is a sure sign that Fall is approaching. This will keep Hubby happy for a few weeks, as he loves to escape into the dark recesses of his neatly stacked wood piles to do all of his 'thinking'.

My pots of blue 'Lobelia' are really putting on a show right now. I bought two flats in the Spring, for $20 and they supplied me with enough plants to fill all of my hanging baskets and this whole display of pots. I call that a bargain! I can see this beautiful wall of blue from my kitchen and pass it every time I go out onto the deck. The bumble bees seem to really like them.

The next few weeks will be busy. My eldest daughter 'H' has a birthday coming up and I am hosting that this Saturday. Then the big event, my son 'G's wedding to 'E'! So much happiness and excitement!
I also have 3 more family birthdays in September and an anniversary for Hubby and I.
So as I go along, I will share the happy events.

I  have always loved the fall, and there are so many reasons why, especially this year!
I hope you are enjoying these last few weeks of summer and looking forward to fall, too.


  1. Love the pictures Karen, Beautiful!

  2. I loved this post, thank you! Your garden is just breathtaking - those lobelias! And I noticed in my Farmer's Almanac that the Dog Days were over, but I hadn't realised it was to do with Sirius. Your woodpile - with matching dog - reminds me that we had better plan to take a trip out to the man we buy our firewood from, that is if the new Aberdeen bypass road hasn't obliterated him and his house!

  3. Hi Christine, thank you for your compliments, my garden thanks you,too! Yes, it is that time of year when we start getting ready for the cold again! You will have to keep me posted on the fate of your 'wood man'! xx


Thank you for stopping by! Your comments are important to me and are very much appreciated. xx Karen

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