My mother-in-law has amazing taste and I always love the way she decorates her home. The gorgeous bowl above is something she "threw together" a couple of years ago and I've always wanted to copy it. Found a similar bowl at a garage sale for $2 (minus the birds, alas) and made a similar arrangement inspired by Mom's for our front porch. Hoping to find a wreath like hers when they go on sale after the holidays. 

Saying goodbye to October

Our first freeze of fall is forecast for tonight, Halloween night, so we've been doing some rearranging in the garden, moving flowerpots closer to the house, pulling out some of the coleus that's overgrown or spent, and soaking in every last drop of enjoyment from the garden. The dahlia's in the pot above have been a pleasant surprise. We bought them in a discount package at Walmart Summer 2013 and never got them planted. They sat in their plastic bag in the garage over the winter and instead of throwing them away this spring, I decided to tuck them in a pot of coleus, just to see what would happen. They bloomed late—not until late August—but they've been so pretty. I think I'll plant a much bigger pot of them next year!
We planted a new clematis, Huldine, last night. It's a white flowering variety, so now we have something growing on each of the deck's front poles (assuming this one makes it through the winter).
An autumn wreath on the front door. Sometimes it seems a waste to put up fall decorations when they'll only be replaced by Christmas ones in a few short weeks, but I do love the looks of fall decor.
We found some great solar LED lights for under the deck rail and so far, they work great! Just the perfect amount of light to cast a soft glow over the deck.

More mulch magic

Finished cutting a border along the side of the house and filled it with the wonderful free mulch we've been getting. A boring garden update, but sure gives a nice finished edge to the lawn and avoids the need to weed-eat around the utility outlets. The purple fountain grass was a huge success and we'll likely be putting one in the same spot next year. We've learned to buy the smallest available because it grows BIG in no time, especially in the ground.

Leaves to rake, but oh, so worth it

We'll have lots of leaves to rake when it's all said and done, but oh, how worth it. Fall is fixing to be stunning this year and our interest is piqued for a peek at fall's peak! (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)
 The Lacebark Elm we planted last year is doing so well. Already it's tall enough to provide privacy and a bit of shade.
This Bradford pear is the star of the show when it comes to fall. It will soon be every shade of red, green, orange, and gold. And the little redbud tree we transplanted from the front yard seems to love its new location in the back yard. Did I mention Fall is our FAVORITE time of year?

In the pink

Cool October weather has brought a new flush of roses. These pink beauties are from one of the bushes we transplanted to underneath the deck last summer and they have outdone themselves this year, providing cut flowers almost all summer long—and now for fall as well. All of our rosebushes were growing here when we bought the house, but we have now moved all but one or two to new locations.