We pruned the 300 hydrangeas as always in the blue-roofed house halfway up the bay….
The grave there of a beloved dog had had its marker freshly and beautifully repainted, probably by the home’s builder and estate caretaker, Bill Clearman, whose skilled attention to detail shows in every task.
Through sleet, rain, and hail we pruned for a week. Our three year pruning plan was progressing well. Birds had found a use for the ugly candelabras left by a previous “gardener”‘s chainsaw pruning.
On March 2nd the view of our garden from Allan’s desk window in the loft showed off how splendidly the assorted boxwoods carried out winter structure. (I have never grown boxwoods on the Peninsula as successfully as in my sheltered garden, and in most gardens where they are hit by wind they spend the winters looking orangey-brown and ugly.) Seeing the old trailer again was a shock, though. With the glory year of our garden tours being past, we had severely chopped Rose ‘Paul’s Himalayan Musk’ so that Allan could work on building a roof over the trailer.
Further and unplanned damage in the garden: the snow storm of December had weighted down and snapped part of the tree hedge planted by the previous owners and I could now see much more of my neighbour’s house and yard. The trees had originally been planted too far apart so they had never met up and yet had provided a considerable amount of privacy.
In March, we lost an occasional job that had brought me much pleasure. Annie had decided to sell her house and we made our last visit there on March 14th to clean up the garden for a real estate showing.
Established clumps of narcissi along the road made me wonder how she could bear to sell and leave (little knowing that later that same year, my mother would leave her garden and but a year after that in 2010 I would leave mine).
Had I been house-and-garden hunting I would have found the front garden and the wine-bottle-edged vegetable garden simply irresistable….
…as well as the kitchen corner and welcoming side porch.
We stopped by in late March for one peek at the Ocean Park garden we’d created in autumn of 2009. Some narcissi bloomed; it definitely needed more plants, but was not on our regular job roster.
Again Allan managed to break our supposedly unbreakable Fiskars shovel. (Again, they sent us a new one for free with their lifetime warrantee!)
but I was quite taken with one depicting houses, especially a little red house that reminded my of my Grandma’s little red house in Seattle and with one depicting blue teapots…
…but in 2009 I was most impressed with a couple of quilts of abstract pattern.
In April we twice visited Joanne’s garden for spring clean up and enjoyed seeing the foal basking in spring sunshine.
On April 17th our oldest cat Maddy (then aged 9) enjoyed the garden, and I imagined what would be a cat’s eye view.
On April 24th, the Ilwaco tree committee got together and again demonstrated how many of us it takes to plant a tree in honour of arbor day, in this case replacing one that had been vandalized and broken the previous year.
Time to break the narrative flow of month to month and, in our next post, feature the year in Cheri’s garden with flowers, good sit spots, and an audience of cats.