Tool or Gardening Product
Small Hand Rake
Fall garden tidying involves reaching between and under shrubs and perennials to remove leaves and twigs. Using a small hand rake is like having a longer arm. I like the longer size with flexible wire tines. There are many different types, styles, and materials. Hold them in your hand to see which fits your grip ... and consider handle length for your task. Prices vary, starting at about $7.00.
Favorite or New Plant
Rich, deep colors emerge in the autumn landscape. The beautyberry shrub with its vibrant purple berry clusters comes to the foreground. Fruit from the Callicarpa americana, a Southern U.S. native plant, has some wildlife food value. Callicarpa dichotoma is most ornamental, with two purple, heavy fruiting cultivars, 'Early Amethyst' and 'Issai', and one white-berried 'Albescens'. Japanese beautyberry, Callicarpa japonica, is also showy, with metallic purple fruits on the species plus the white culivar 'Leucocarpa.'