My mission: to not leave the property until we return to work. A blessed drizzle all night Thursday night meant that we could probably put off watering the Long Beach planters until Tuesday.
Friday, 22 August 2014
Allan volunteered to swing the pick and get the salmonberry stumps out of the newly cleared bogsy wood edge.
He made quick work of this hard task.
I am so pleased with how this is coming along…
a newly clear tunnel runs south to north.
Even though I had planned to wait for a rainier season to put my new plants in the ground, I could not resist planting a few.
I still wonder if I should or should not remove the easternmost clump (to the left).
In the early evening, we began a fire to burn up some odd twiggy bits from the old woodpile.
a twiggy pile
I texted Olde Towne Café’s Luanne that we were about to make fire, not expecting her to really show up, but she did, with a small bag of paper to burn that helped get the fire going.
such a pleasant evening
Luanne has to leave at dusk as she rises so early to open the café; we enjoyed the fire on into the dusk.
loving the new garden bed behind the smoke
Saturday, 23 August 2014
Just as I was about to go into the garden in late morning, I got a text from our friend and client Jo asking if she could bring some family over. Although she was in the midst of a family reunion of 35 people, she only brought two….and my good friend Coco.
Let off the leash (because our yard is safely fenced), Coco relished running around the entire garden.
She discovered a cat (Smokey)…
and was closely observed by Mary and Frosty from their high cat door perch.
Jo was very taken by the Chelone (pink turtlehead) and asked “Why don’t I have one of these?”
Jo will have pink turtlehead in her garden next year!
Allan’s photo; her niece makes a heart to show how much Jo loves that plant!
As we strolled around, we saw a frog on a Cox’s Orange Pippin apple.
Allan got a better side.
I did set foot off the property, but only onto the front sidewalk to demonstrate the peanut butter scent of the Melianthus major (a big hit as always). I think Jo should have some of that in her garden as well, since I learned that she has a nephew or grandson who adores peanut butter.
After they left, I contemplated what task to tackle first.
looking east from driveway
have not had time to deadhead my own painted sage, and it may be too late to bother.
I dragged a big planting tub away from the front porch area to give Allan room for one of his new ferns, and because I wanted a shady place to plant my Asarum ‘Shell Shocked’ so I don’t lose it in the wilds of the garden.
a new space for Allan
and a new spot for the planter
I decided to dare to dig out the blue Geranium which was taking up too much room in Allan’s garden.
‘Amy Doncaster’ or…??
I replanted it in the back garden with lots and lots of water. (Two days later, it is fine.)
The next day, he asked if a dog had been digging in his garden (forgetting I had showed him the dug up plant).
While weeding in an area that caught my eye while planting the geranium, I saw a big apple on my young Pink Lady apple tree. It came off with a twist. Then some internet research told me I had probably picked it too early and that the real name of the apple is Cripp’s Pink. Cripp’s Pink is the cultivar name, and Pink Lady is a trademark name; that is something I had recently been reading about in a book by Plant Delight’s Tony Avent.
It is so large and came off so easily.
There are a few more apples on the tree to make up for having picked one too early.
Meanwhile, Allan went to the Ilwaco Saturday Market to get produce and some photos for Discover Ilwaco.
some of Allan’s Saturday Market photos:
Suzy Q’s Magical Glass
from the port office deck
De Asis produce
De Asis produce
De Asis produce; we had peaches for dessert
returning via the gearshed next door…
he came in the east gate
Still with plenty of energy, he went to Black Lake and sailed around for awhile:
“Couldn’t get out of the yacht club’s harbour in the yellow boat before it hit a snag & capsized. Easily righted. I had a row boat in tow which I walked over to and towed it all back. Last shot is from the green boat under sail with the fog coming in on the south shore. Pretty fun overall.”
rescue boat in tow
He had been thinking of taking his newly painted “picnic cooler” boat up to Island Lake but decided to save that for another time.
the “cooler” boat on Nora’s lawn
His dad used to take Allan out in this boat when Allan was little. It was from Sears and quite economical at that time.
Allan built that narrow boat moving..thingie…in order to move his boats in and out of the narrow paths in our garden (paths that I may have made too narrow in the area where he wants to store the boat).
Sunday, 24 August 2014
I am ever so pleased at the four sprinklers Allan has set up, which cover almost the whole back garden. I did not try them out yet as Allan would be wanting to mow the lawn.
We got the idea from Pink Poppy Farm, and Allan put ours on taller posts to cover our large garden beds.
True, overhead watering is not as good as an in ground sprinkler system. However, this will work well for us for now; maybe when we retire, we can get fancier. I do find that I move plants around a lot and in my experience that makes an in ground sprinkler system a problem.
I had spent some time yesterday weeding under the former danger tree in the back garden, where the blue bottles hung from an old branch on the tall trunk that we chose to have left behind by the tree cutter. Today, I found the bottles on the ground…right where I had been weeding.
a close call
later: Allan rehung them on the west arbour
I spent the afternoon planting all of my new Fuchsias, three in big pots and the rest in the shade beds by the alder trees.
loving the new bed by the fire area (and the lawn is now mowed)
Allan watered the Ilwaco planters (thus not really having a four day weekend):
the planter with the new free begonias from Basket Case
and a bit of sightseeing at the port
Monday, 25 August 2014
I placed my bulb order! That is a huge deal, as I tend to put it off till Labour Day or (last year) even later. It hangs over my head and causes much anxiety till I force myself to do it. I went over budget, as always, so the extras will end up in my garden or perhaps I can flog a few to friends.
Then weeding absorbed my day. I thought Allan might go boating; instead, he started on a project involving our rain water barrels.
More weeding while I tried out the new sprinklers (worked fabulously well) led to more admiration of my new shade bed.
A little delight awaited me when I weeded a shade bed on the east side:
Bletila ‘White Pearl’ from Todd Wiegardt
I added to my bowl of poppy seeds that Jacob Moore is collecting for Madeline.
Devery came by to pick some raspberries.
Allan demonstrated how the new rain barrel will collect water from the roof. Rainytime water feature!
The water is now accessible; it used to be way back behind plants in the corner so this source rarely got used.
In the greenhouse, the tomato plants look miserable with lots of yellow leaves…
They get watered daily, I think not too often.
Despite their sad appearance, the tomato plants produce a bounty every day, enough to share with friends.
the transplanted blue geranium, happy (always a risk transplanting in dry weather)
Allan demos the new rain barrel by spraying some water into the gutter.
I will want to stand here in the rain and watch.
He rigged up two barrels instead of one in the driveway where we need water the most (to fill buckets to take to work with us).
We have room for one more rain catcher here…a spot I did not even notice had a downspout till recently.
In the front garden: the crab pot fence proved to be a good spot for displaying broken off alliums.
Scruphularia variegata (more nicely known as figwort) has good flowers as well as good green and white foliage.
What a perfect long weekend. I am so spoiled now that I do not want to go back to work tomorrow, even though I am concerned at how thirsty the Long Beach planters may be.
a last garden look with fog obscuring the hill southwest of us
and nasturtiums outside the west gate
The last thing Allan did was straighten the cat door platform. Here it is from earlier in the weekend:
and here it is all evened out.
I am not thrilled that my wall quotation is blocked: “A garden without cats can scarcely be called a garden at all” (Beverly Nichols); Allan says the wood is only a three quarters of an inch wide….I will have to examine this in person! (I was firmly in the house by the time Allan took that photo.) I could move the quotation higher if need be.
on the porch, violas with faces
And then in for the evening to blog and then rest my brain with a couple of Gordon Ramsay shows.
Meanwhile, I’ve been reading some of the gardening books that I saw on our Bloggers Fling visit to Timber Press.
Decoding Gardening Advice and The Anxious Gardener’s Book of Answers each had useful information and would be especially helpful to beginning gardeners. So You Want to Start a Nursery by Tony Avent of Plant Delights fame was fascinating to me in parts. I do not want to start a nursery so I skipped some of the chapters on the business and equipment side of things, but I deeply enjoyed the chapters on subjects such as new plant introductions, and Tony’s information on the difference between trademark names and cultivar names was a revelation and cleared up some mysteries that had been bothering me. I strongly suggest you turn to his excellent online article on the subject here. This passage explains why I have an apple called ‘Pink Lady’ whose REAL name is ‘Cripp’s Pink':
“The rose industry seems to have been the first to use nonsensical, non-conforming names for plant cultivars, while the bedding plant industry completely thumbed its nose at the Code by not even bothering to come up with any cultivar names for most of their introductions. One of the most famous roses in horticulture is one that everyone knows as Peace. Surprisingly, there is no such plant as Rosa ‘Peace’. The plant we grow under this name is actually Rosa ‘Madame A. Meilland’. The trade name Peace was coined by Conard Pyle Nursery, and used to market Rosa ‘Madame A. Meilland’ after World War II to capitalize on the post-war sentiment. The plant became known in the public’s mind as the Peace rose.
Some of the larger nurseries soon realized that regardless of the cultivar name of the plant, they could come up with their own proprietary (trademarked) marketing name and use these names to promote plants which already had valid cultivar names. The idea was to convince the public that the company’s marketing name was actually the name of the plant. “
Read on to fully understand the scandal! I was fascinated.
My favourite so far of the new-to-me Timber Press books is one that I purchased because our local library did not have it.
I was smitten as soon as I read her introductory words:
I learned a new word from a lovely passage about an evening garden:
All 136 pages of the book were immensely pleasing to me. I learned that the city of London has working farms (and the book has an index of where to find them). Ms. Babbs would be a wonderful friend with whom to explore horticultural London and I would so love to have joined her for a mint-muddled cocktail on her rooftop garden. I do hope she continue to write autobiographical books.