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Archive for Jan, 2007

young phormiums

City Hall Phormium when it was young

Still the snow lightly covers the garden and the pond is frozen.  I spend part of each day reading the journals at Moosey’s Country Garden. There she is dealing with the same thing that is plaguing me: removing old Phormiums that are too big and drab.  I need to get the go-ahead to move the two I planted years ago at Long Beach city hall, where originally they were so small and attractively spikey.   Now they are so huge that they had to be moved back once from blocking the memorial plaque for an old mayor, and even now they seem to suck up all the light and interest from the smaller things in the garden…plus the blades get so tatty.

Allan, ever energetic, paints the kitchen a lovely yellow…then all dishes will have to be washed and returned to place (my share of the rather large job for a small room…large because he is a perfectionist in every detail).  By then perhaps this unpleasant cold snap will cease and I can get outside and do a few garden projects before our busy work season returns. By the beginning of February, work takes a heavy grip on our time as all gardens need midwinter fluffing. I hope I am caught up with Moosey by then!

This is the first winter since moving to the beach in 93 that I have had enough money saved to take a whole 6 weeks off, debt-free and guilt-free.  (Part of the pleasure has been a lot of reading, and part has been rewatching Buffy the Vampire Slayer…last night’s final episode again brought a tear to me eyes.)

Speaking of reading, my best books of 2006:

Broken for You by Stephanie Kallos

The Whole World Over by Julia Glass

Still Life With Chickens by Catherine Goldhammer

Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

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Note, Feb 2011:  If it is not the most annoying thing that mobileme blogs will disappear in June, then the most annoying thing is that I am not very techie about moving my blog.  So I’ve decided to gradually shift the content over here as a series of flashbacks.  (A year later, I realized I could set the date to the date of each entry, so even though it is going to mess up Pinterest links for all the 2007 entries, I have decided I would rather have my blog in the right order!)

12 January, 2007:  Cottage Memories, my first journal entry

dahlia, sweetpeas, daylily

dahlia, sweetpeas, daylily

This is the year of the blog of Tangly Cottage, inspired by Moosey’s Country Garden’s journal.
It’s easy to find time to write it now as the ground is white with a light chunky layer of snow.  On an indoors day, I found the above photo of my old garden in Seattle.
My garden now is so much more dignified and foliage driven….mostly because of lack of full sun.  However, this year I can perhaps focus on clients’ gardens to get back that lush floriferous look….I might have gone too far in the direction of sophisticated texture and foliage and I would like to return to the blowsy cottagey look.
Projects to do as soon as the weather is warm enough to set a toe out of the house:
Move two enormous Phormiums that are taking up way too much space in the lower garden. Put them along the outside of the deer fence, an area which I would like to get more defined this year even though it is slightly outside my property line.
Cut back the dead foliage on the Siberian iris..just because that will make the pond look better even in winter.
Move those two big piles of pond silty clay that I dug out last Labour Day, which are still sitting by the pond because work took over all my at-home garden time.  Okay, at least I moved one of the three piles before I got swamped. If I lived in a slightly drier clime, that clay would be wonderful for making a straw bale house.
Cut down the grove of alder seedlings that have started uphill…there are way too many and they will overcrowd and fall on our car if left to grow…In my dreams, I make a glorious wattle fence out of them…or they will make good chopped kindling for my mother’s woodstove.
It is particularly strange these days to notice that my hands are completely clean…no dirt under the nails or in the cuticles.  This past month has probably been the longest time I have gone without doing  (hardly) any gardening in perhaps 20 years.
January 13
The garden would look lovely in the frost and snow if I had taken time earlier to cut down some of the tattier foliage and picked up junky objects like white plastic buckets…and had I moved those darned piles of clay from around the pond. The evidence of undone tasks definitely brings down the tone of lovely view of snow on traceries of branches.

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