Saturday, October 22, 2011


We've had a spider infestation lately with the cooler weather.  Now, I am not squeamish when it comes to spiders because I am much bigger than they are. I don't go out of my way to kill them; however, if there is one in my sink or bath tub, it is unceremoniously washed down the drain.  In Colorado we probably have only one dangerous spider: the black widow, easily identified with her shiny black body, long spindly legs, and the red hourglass shaped spot on her belly. While not deadly, her bites are poisonous. My childhood friend's mom talked about being bitten by a black widow as a child when one was hiding in the toe of her shoe. Another deadly spider, the brown recluse, delivers a far more serious bite because the venom destroys the tissue around the bite, causing a serious wound. According to the Colorado State University Extension web site, the brown recluse does not live in Colorado, but other spiders are often mistaken for it. For a really good article on common garden spiders, check out Curbstone Valley Blog.

As for my spiders, they will be hanging around until sometime after Halloween.

Little Miss Muffet sat on her tuffet eating her curds and whey, when along came a great spider.

I love these spiders. I picked them up at the super market on an impulse. They light up the fireplace mantle, giving it a warm glow on these cool fall evenings.

October days bring such relief to the scorching heat of the summer. Today was a beautiful Indian Summer day when we were able to get one large project finished. (Indian summer, by the way, occurs when temps reach the 70s after the first frost). In the early summer, we dug out the spreaders in the front garden and then the summer got away from us. I hated the eye sore right in the front of the house. My fall bulbs arrived from White Flower Farms this week, so we set out to plant them, but first we had to clean up the garden bed to make it ready for the bulbs. Took most of the day. First the head gardener raked away the old bark mulch and spaded  the bed, digging up the daffodil bulbs previous owners had planted. Then he used the rototiller to break up the clods. He raked the bed level then top dressed it with compost. I have decided that I will plant roses there in the spring. Tomorrow we will plant the bulbs that arrived this week, along with the daffodils that we dug up as we worked the soil.

I keep writing "we," but it is always the head gardener who does the heavy lifting and digging. I offer a great deal of moral support and plenty of suggestions on how to dig a hole-- and document it all with my camera in hand, so that I can blog about it in the late evening. (I am so fortunate that he is a mellow guy).

Now we have clean slate for the new rose garden.

We raked away old mulch full of weed seeds. 

Quite a load of daffodil bulbs that we were able to save. I would imagine there is about a hundred dollars worth of bulbs. He also dug out the tiger lilies that just didn't seem to do well under the window. 

I am listening to the weather as I write. Snow. I will believe it when I see it. Rain Tuesday. Snow Wednesday. The mountains will get snow for sure, but hard to say about the the plains.

I just want to end tonight's post with Thank You to my followers who always post such kind and supportive comments. I have fallen a bit behind in my own commenting. Last week was a brutal grading marathon, and while I read my blogs every day, I don't always have the brain power to write wise, witty, generous comments, but I am reading and loving every single blog that I read. Happy week-end.


  1. Snow Wed? That fast? I thought fall just started.

    Your tilled soil looks good and the mulch even better. Mine come with weeds too. I guess the most important ingredient is the mellow head gardener.

  2. Oh it will be lovely to see the progress of the rose bed and the bulbs. As I plant my bulbs (back aching as it is !) I always think how glad I did it in the spring. We are having some lovely mild weather here in the UK and I should be in the garden!


    We still have a few roses in flower here due to the mild'ish weather we are having, although frost at night which I am sure will kill them off very soon.

    It is lovely to plant the Spring bulbs as it reminds you that in a few months they will be flowering. We have had a forsythia in flower this week, I think confused by our weather this Autumn.

    Keep well, keep warm, keep blogging!!

    Jackie in Surrey, UK.

  4. Everytime I see someone commenting on zone 5 and getting snow soon, I shiver....WHEN...we move, it will be zone 5. This cardener is having some difficulties in dealing with that thought.

    Wow, what a daffodil haul! And I am looking forward to seeing all of your bulbs up in the 5 or zone 8 winter is cold.

    Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

  5. Hi Ann,

    Thanks for your comment on my blog. Your black widow spider sounds scary! I am glad it doesn't live in Holland :-)!

    You have been busy in the garden! What a lovely spot to plant your bulbs.

    Happy Sunday!


  6. Ann, here in Florida, we have a plethera of spiders, including The Black Widow, the terrible brown Recluse and pesty others, plus that huge Wolf spider that likes to get in the house and is the size of a tea cup (almost). I don't even like artificial spiders!!!
    Sure hope you don't get snow this early.

  7. I admire and appreciate spiders but I don't want them anywhere near me!! A spider bite here is usually very bad news...

  8. We've had a real bumper crop of spiders here this year. Normally I leave them be, but not this year after getting several non-poisonous but very itchy bites. We STILL need to get our bulbs in the ground here!

  9. Eek. I am not a fan of the real spiders but I can tolerate those glittery halloween ones.
    I am wondering how much snow we will actually get up here in the mountains. It seems to always happen around Halloween. :)