Fall 2018 Newsletter

Photo of Echinacea Seedhead

Crimson Sage Nursery Newsletter
Fall 2018

Photo of Echinacea Seedhead Echinacea angustifolia Happy Fall to all our customers. It has been a crazy summer of intense heat waves, wild fire smoke (Luckily we were on the edges of it) and the whole west seemed to be in flames. The smoky skies are finally over as the first gentle rains soak the land here and the plants explode into what many in California call the second Spring. The shorter days and cool nights arrived with the fresh air of Fall and the high definition of beautiful Blue Skies and mountain ridges in the distance! I honestly had forgotten how amazing the sky and landscape can be after so many hazy smoky days! The plants have survived the summer with a few more yellow leaves and many so tall they have to be pruned to fit in the boxes! We will continue to ship until Thanksgiving for those of you still scheming about putting in a few plants this Fall! Photo of Hawthorn berries.Hawthorn berries

As we arrive at the Fall season I want to encourage all of you to take stock of your Herbal gardens, are you missing some important perennial herbs for your elixirs and teas or are you thinking of enlarging your Herb Garden now that your Veggies are harvested? I sound like a broken record to many of you but I highly recommend planting perennials or trees during this season especially if you live in California, the Pacific Northwest, Texas, Florida or the Desert Southwest. When you plant perennials in Fall in those climates they get the benefit of the winter rains and cooler weather to settle into their new homes with all their energy going into their root development. This results in lush Spring growth and very established plants going into the next growing season versus the stress involved in Spring planting in areas that get hot very quickly!

Planting perennials at this time of year means that some plants may arrive partially or fully dormant with yellowing leaves or even potentially looking like an empty pot but do not despair they still have a robust root system which we made sure is there before shipping them!Photo of Gayfeather. Gayfeather When planting try to plant the plant at the same level as it is in the pot with fresh soil covering the surface but not overly deep to where the crown of the plants is too deeply buried. Make sure to water the plants until regular rains start but do not fertilize too heavily especially in climates which will get cold. You want to inspire good root growth not encourage a bunch of lush leaf growth that then gets zapped in the first frost! Photo of Meadow Arnica.Meadow Arnica

As the days get shorter now and the plants start to die back I am often asked whether to cut back the dead tops of Perennial Herbs right away or leave them. I am a huge fan of dead and decaying stalks in the garden both vegetable and Herbs. The dead stalks supply seeds, fruits and leaves that birds and other critters love as they go into winter. Clearing some foliage is fine but leave plenty behind. As the winter comes those stalks will collapse around the base of the plant acting as a certain amount of frost protection as well. Not to mention as they decay they add a healthy dose of rotting organic matter to your soil. One of my favorite things about not cutting back all your dry stalks in fall are the clusters of surprise seedlings you will likely find the following Spring!!

Peatie the dog hiding in the foliage.Peatie hiding in the foliage.I want to Thank all our wonderful customers returning and new this year for your continuing support of this small, Woman-owned business which is very much a labor of love. As I watch the plants slowly yellowing and going dormant I am always fascinated how each plant seems to attune to their own inner calendar. I am so grateful for all my years of tending plants, the privilege of watching them grow and then watching them slowly disappear so they can put their energy inward down into the roots and then with the life force of Spring they can grow once again with renewed vigor!! The miracle of that cycle of life never ceases to amaze me as a gardener and it pleases me immensely to think of you all out there having that same experience in your own herbal gardens! Enjoy these Fall days bringing in the last of your herbal Harvest and hopefully gathering some seeds as you allow yourself to dream of what is yet to come.

Hoping some of you will be inspired to try out some Fall Plantings; I know you will be thrilled with the results next Spring!

Special Offer for our Newsletter Readers

For all the following plants, prices are REDUCED to only $6.00 each!


I am getting orders out as fast as I can, about 100 per week! UPS will email you tracking numbers when your plants leave the nursery. I am shipping out generally in the order that orders came in.