Remembering Other Frosty Days at May Dreams Gardens

Today we had a killing frost.

A year ago today, we had a killing frost.

What are the chances of having a killing frost like that on the same day, two years in a row?

I don’t know, as I don’t have the math knowledge to cipher like that, but I suppose you would have to know the range of probable killing frost dates for Indianapolis, and then figure out the likelihood of all the combinations of dates you could have between two years, and then we would know ‘what are the chances’?

But it wouldn’t matter one bit, as we know the killing frost is going to happen, and usually it is going to happen around October 20th, give or take. I suppose this year and last year it was “take”. Or “give”. I don’t know. I guess we just got an extra week this season.

But let’s move on…

A year ago on this date, I wrote a post about what I did in the garden that day. It was about getting started with fall clean up, piling all the plant debris up high in the compost bins, and making some decisions as I went about the garden doing clean up. Goodness, I had a productive day a year ago.

I hope to have a similar day this Saturday. I need to have a similar day this Saturday.

Two years ago on this date, I wrote about the differences between varieties of flowering pear trees.

I don’t have a flowering pear tree, Pyrus calleryana, but my neighbors on each side each have one in their front yards. I should change that to” had”. My one neighbor’s pear tree that always leaned and always turned red first in the fall, fell over in a big storm a month or so ago, so it is no more.

That pear tree just fell over. Literally. It wasn’t uprooted. It just snapped off at ground level and fell over. And it was a pretty good sized tree. Did I mention it just fell over?

We should all remember that this tree just fell over, as it wasn’t the only flowering pear tree in the neighborhood that fell over in that storm, a windy remnant of Hurricane Ike.

We should also remember that when we buy trees and shrubs, we should look to get a named variety because then we are more likely to get a good one. But always do your research before you buy, because having a named variety isn’t a guarantee of a good tree or shrub.

(As evidence that not all named varities are good, I present that 'dog' of a forsythia I had, Forsythia x intermedia 'Arnold Dwarf'. Fancy hybrid, indeed! It was a big disappointment of an impulse purchase.)

Considering flowering pear trees in general, there really are better ornamental flowering trees.


So why am I going back through old posts?

In preparation for an upcoming blogging milestone, I’m looking back through old posts from the past two plus years to see what I’ve written and pick out a few of my personal favorites.

If you are a regular reader of my blog or even a newer reader, I'd be interested in knowing if you have a favorite post or two here at May Dreams Gardens. If it isn’t too presumptive or pretentious to ask, which ones are they? You can leave me a comment or send me an email.


  1. Were those Bradford Pears, Carol? I have heard bad things about those.

    I have never kept track of frost dates in the fall. I do need to keep better track of last frost dates in spring, because those I keep miscalculating!

  2. I think I know your Pyrus calleryana as a Bradford pear; one of its distinguishing features seems to be breakage--either large limbs or, as you saw, whole trees. There was one that snapped off near a local school after a not-very-big wind.

  3. Can I choose this one as my favorite post? Okay, I'll admit it, I'm lazy and didn't check any past posts. Well, I take that back, I did read "An Introduction to May Dreams Gardens." It's good too.

  4. We dodged a freeze last night. Maybe it will stay away until late next month like it is supposed to.

    I enjoy all the embrace posts.

  5. I had been reading up on those pears as I thought one would be lovely in my yard - apparently their nice compact upright form comes at quite a cost, and they are very prone to breakage in windy areas (wait, 50 mph winds are forecasted for my neighborhood on a regular basis? good to know), but a name is no guarantee any more, I guess. I have higher hopes for my locust tree - there are varieties also prone to splitting, but hopefully mine is accurately described as "not one of them". I've got my fingers crossed!

  6. I would love to be doing a fall cleanup. I'm afraid I let my plants stay as long as they are still flowering and most times they really need to go. If we had a frost again last night this may be the day to start the clean up. I'll be checking for my favorite post when I have time to go back and look at them all.

  7. I will think about this question Carol, you have had some very excellent posts..,several that have made me think and many that have made me laugh! Gail

  8. This is an awesome post - congrats on your upcoming milestone!

  9. Carol, Your blog was one of the first I read when I was first introduced to garden blogs this past February. I couldn't even begin to pick a favorite! And to top it off, I came here today and realized I've missed about a week of your posts, including the results of your survey. So now I'm catching up and I've forgotten some of the earlier great posts. I love all your acronym posts--the WOO's, the GADS--and then there are the rabbit wars posts and the "Embrace" posts...too many to decide!

    You always provide helpful information and suggestions without being "tsk, tsk-ing" to those of us who are less industrious. And you often make me laugh--just keep on writing!

  10. My email said your address is not valid or something. I'll just paste it here.

    Hi Carol,
    About a month ago I discovered your blog by seeing something about a bloom day from someone from the Cottage Garden Forum on iVillage, then Googling it. I have been reading the current posts ever since, and have looked around your blog, but haven't read all of it. You really are an excellent writer. I think the post that sticks with me the most, was the one you wrote about gardeners being eccentric, even though I can't remember the name of it. Of course, the GBBD posts are also my favorites.

    Sue, (I had put the name of my blog in the email, but don't need to here.)

  11. Oh my goodness, you want me to choose a favorite post??? You might as well be asking for the moon, Carol! There are so many! Seriously!

  12. It looks like my comments are back to normal, but let me know! Re Bradford Pears, I was hoping my neighbor's tree would succumb to Hurricane Ike. I don't think it even lost a twig!


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