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Archive for September, 2013

Saturday, September 28, 2013

gale warning

gale warning

In the late morning, I wanted to get a telephoto of how the two flags at the port office (signifying a gale warning, 39-54 mph winds) had slipped halfway down the flagpole.  It came out rather blurry, but there it is.  The wind, while strong (I later learned it had been 61 mph at Cape Disappointment, the backside of which I can see from my window) was not a cold wind.  So during a lull in the rain, I went out to take a video of the windy bogsy wood with my phone.  You may be able to view it here.

I became thoroughly occupied with a new Facebook page that will be a repository for my non-Ilwaco photos of the Long Beach Peninsula.  I had no intention of going to Olde Towne in the bad weather…until I get a message from Luanne who sounded kind of lonely!  So we went, and I was glad we did as our friend Kelly was there and, with no other customers except for her niece, Luanne was able to sit and visit with us.

almost empty on a stormy day

almost empty on a stormy day

I was also glad that I had not walked there as the rain was absolutely sheeting down beyond any amount I have seen so far this year.  (I later learned that Astoria had something like three inches of rain.)

In case of a power outage, Olde Towne has a good stock of oil lamps for sale.

In case of a power outage, Olde Towne has a good stock of oil lamps for sale.

Amazingly the rain stopped for awhile after we returned home.  The Danger Tree was still standing and had not lost a limb.

stubborn old thing

stubborn old thing

In a lull with no wind, I took a walk through the bogsy wood.  It had been completely devoid of any standing water the evening before.

The bogsy wood is bogsy now.

The bogsy wood is bogsy now.

Path next to the Danger Tree:  The water came almost over my shoes.

Path next to the Danger Tree: The water came almost over my shoes.

It’s rare to see the water standing this deep on the lawn to the north of the bogsy wood.

between danger tree and bogsy wood

between danger tree and bogsy wood

the swale by the bridge

The swale under the bridge was overflowing.

deep

I’ve never seen the bridge swale this deep this early in the year.

I would love it if this were full of water all year.

I would love it if this were full of water all year.

more standing water beyond the deer fence

from the bridge:  more standing water beyond the deer fence

next to the bridge

next to the bridge

the big swale in the middle of the bogsy wood

the big swale in the middle of the bogsy wood

looking north to the house

looking north to the house

Sad though it is, I think I must admit that the cosmos in the garden boat are goners.  Some years they bloom into bulb planting time.

maybe if I cut them halfway back....

maybe if I cut them halfway back….

I’m not much for going out in the evening (except for dinner) anymore.  Something certainly changed in me along the way because in my twenties and thirties I was out clubbing two or more nights a week.  (Some of those evenings turned out so boring that I would have been better off staying  in and reading a book, although many excellent bands were seen back in the day.)  However, after our recent daytime visit to The Sou’wester, where I lived for a year in 1993, I resolved to go out to more of their musical events…for old times’ sake.  It was an effort to leave home comforts to go out the door at almost 8 PM to hear a concert opening their Artist Residency program!

Once we were there, the living room felt so familiar.

At the Sou'wester

At the Sou’wester

We talked with a teacher and mechanic couple who were visiting from Portland.  She had fallen in love with the Sou’wester much as I had in 1991.  I warned her how I had come on vacation in fall of ’92, a vacation that got longer and longer until I suddenly upped stakes and moved here.  She loves her job in Portland, but don’t underestimate the lure of Seaview.  While we talked, I absorbed the familiar details of the room.

the glow of light on the beamed ceiling

the glow of light on the beamed ceiling

The sound of guests in the four upstairs suites going up and down the stairs took me back twenty years.

before the performance...looking to the south windows of the lodge

before the performance…looking to the south windows of the lodge living room

Many an hour I had spent in the office just to the left in the above photo.

New owner Thandi has a staff of friends to help her run the place.  Back in our time, Robert and I were the only staff to do all the cleaning, repairs, office work, lawn mowing to help the previous owners who were in their mid 60s at the time.  With the staff who were there that evening, and a few guests who attended the performance, listening to songwriter Nick Jaina was a quiet and personal experience.

Allan took this photo just as the show started.

Nick Jaina at the Sou'wester

Nick Jaina at the Sou’wester

I wanted to get a photo that captured how I felt being surrounded by Sou’westerness again and listening to the songs at the same time.

I think I got it.

I think I got it.

He told us the story of having stayed in one of the vintage trailers to write twenty songs in one day.  In his article about that experience is a photo of the exact trailer (I think) that Robert and I lived in for several months in ’93 (unless the resort has acquired another Spartan RV with curved front windows like that).

I remembered so many things while sitting in the living room listening to Nick’s excellent songs.  How I knew that the previous owners had bought the Sou’wester (in a state of great disrepair) when they were fifty.  I moved there when I was thirty seven, and ever since I have thought that age 50 was the benchmark for starting a big new thing and after age 50 it would be too late.  Now I am 58 and that is a disturbing thought.

Then I thought about age for quite a few minutes.  A lot of the people at the Sou’wester now look to be in their 20s and 30s.  I thought, Do they realize we are pretty much the same?  I know I did not realize that about “older people” until I became an older person.

Nick closed with the most amazing song…something like “I’m in the middle of a story that is breaking my heart; I won’t be with you when our plans finally come apart.”  It certainly brought back memories of assorted heartbreaks.  As I said, I have not been to a concert of this sort for a very very long time.  I bought Nick’s CD.  The song is called  “I’ll Become Everything.”   Give it a listen for some angsty memories.

Upon departing, the sight of the lodge with its windows aglow reminded me of evenings walking back from the beach at dusk and seeing these lights, and then the light in the window of the old Spartan Manor trailer that I stayed in.

Sou'wester by night from K Place

Sou’wester by night from K Place

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Rain.  Wind.  Blogging.  Did not set one toe outside.  Deleted over 2000 extra photos from iPhoto and got the “Our Long Beach Peninsula’ page well stocked with photos.  I want to leave some history behind, but it is all based on the hope that WordPress and Facebook will linger on long after me.

Allan pointed out that our dinner was 75% food from the garden:  three different kinds of peppers and garlic sauteed with baby red potatoes, and tomatoes, and Cox’s Orange Pippin apples all next to some fish.

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Friday, September 27, 2013

With much rain predicted, I was sure we could get the entire day off.  I had various computer projects in mind, mainly sorting out and deleting some of the 16,000 plus photos I’ve taken since my old computer crashed last February.

I walked down to Olde Towne in the wind while Allan continued to snooze.

strawberry waffle

strawberry waffle

He joined me after awhile because I had gotten thoroughly soaked by sideways rain and buffeted by wind on the way to breakfast.  While he took the opportunity to go to a shop in Seaview to have new shocks installed in our van, I got a ride home from Queen La De Da and told myself I would put ten things away before I booted up the computer.  After maybe thirty things had been properly dealt with, I proceeded to sort cerinthe seeds that I had collected over the summer.

Cerinthe chaff

Cerinthe chaff

Out of that pile of chaff (in a bowl made by my friend Sheila (New Leaf Plants and Pottery), I got over 150 seeds.

Cerinthe seeds

Cerinthe seeds

They are large and each plant produces so many that I am amazed at how expensive a packet of Cerinthe major purpurascens seeds is.

Allan returned from his errands and told me that, as the rain and wind had slowed, he had seen the Port of Ilwaco crew out removing (with a backhoe) some of the tall ornamental grasses we had tagged earlier in the week.  We waited long enough to give the crew a head start and then went out…leaving the cats snoozing.

Smokey and Mary

Smokey and Mary

The crew had done a wonderful job of tidying up after themselves after removing grasses to the north of the old Port Bistro building.

where once were grasses

where once were grasses

We had just a bit of cleaning up to do so we also clipped the big, woody old lavenders.  We may replace them next spring.

Two more tagged by the much missed old Port Bistro café

before (Sept 25)

after

after

I am a big fan of ornamental grasses; the problem with those is that they blocked the oncoming traffic sightline of people leaving the nearby parking lots.

Just to the west in the next curbside bed, the removal of another large Miscanthus had pulled the root mass of a Ceanothus in a way that reminded me of the ruching up of a rug.

root mass out of place

root mass out of place

Allan managed to get it back where it should be with the pick, and I did some pruning on the Ceanothus and pulled as much soil as possible into the hole where the grass used to be.   We’ll get more soil but we want to wait till the removal of the rest of the tagged plants because we will have more holes to level off.

by the tuna club

by the tuna club…I’ll plant something smaller in this spot.

At home, the cats were still snoozing but Mary welcomed some attention.

waking up

waking up

At five PM we walked three blocks down to the museum for opening night of “Charles Fitzpatrick: Pen & Photo”.  On the way, I admired a stunning gazania in Judy’s garden.

Gazania

Gazania

The rain held off for our walk to the museum, and the snacks were excellent.

refreshments

refreshments

Peninsulites examine the photos.

Peninsulites examine the photos.

One panel of photos was especially interesting to me as it showed a lot of old hotels, including the Grandview Lodge…AKA The Sou’wester.

photos

enlarged

enlarged

Back in those days, the beach came right up to J Place in Seaview and was at the Sou’wester’s front door.  Now it is half a mile to the west because of dune accretion.

Every November, the museum has a lively auction of small pieces created by local artists and craftspeople.  The display was up for preview and I now know which ones I am going to bid on.

preview of 6x6 art auction

preview of 6×6 art auction

Unfortunately, so do a number of other people.

art collectors plotting

art collectors plotting

We were able to walk home without being rained on.

heading home past Larry and Robert's garden boat, with Judy and Tom's house in the background

heading home past Larry and Robert’s garden boat, with Judy and Tom’s house in the background

Soon after we were cozily indoors, the rain returned with force and remained for most of the next two days.  As it was only 6 PM, I had a good head start on writing the blog post about the wonderful bayside garden I had seen the day before.  What with getting the photos in the right order and side distractions such as messages from friends, it took four hours to complete the entry after all.

.

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McCormick-Stephens Garden

Consider this your first sneak preview of the Music in the Garden tour, 2014! The Barclay garden will be on the tour again, and Mr. Barclay suggested that his neighbours’ garden also be included. Said neighbours invited tour organizer Nancy Allen to visit and I got to accompany her. We both agreed the garden and the visit were an 11 (or more) on a scale of 1-10.

halfway up the entry drive

halfway up the entry drive

The property is five acres. Stephen and John have been developing the garden for only a few years. The land is part of the former Clarke family properties which means there already was a collection of old rhododendrons in place. Stephen and John have gotten to know plantsman and rhodo expert Steve Clarke who can identify every shrub and tree. The new owners are well versed in shrubs and trees themselves, much more so than I am! Any mistakes in plant names here are mine alone.

When the entry road was being built, the men with heavy equipment wanted to remove a tree that was in its path. It was a favourite kind of tree of Stephen and John and instead they had the road curve around it.

Thujopsis dolabrata

Thujopsis dolabrata

first glimpse of the house

first glimpse of the house

The house was designed by local architect Erik Fagerland, who has shared a slideshow of it here.

house

A courtyard between two wings collected runoff from the roofs. The architect believes gutters spoil the lines of the house, so the rocky swale is the solution.

courtyard and water collection swale

courtyard and water collection swale

The owners told us that sometimes the swale is not enough to process all the water. It just occurs to me as I post this photo: I wonder if it were planted with some cool water absorbing grasses, would it handle heavy rains better and still retain this clean, open look?

courtyard

courtyard

west end of courtyard garden

west end of courtyard garden

I loved the garage doors and rate them the most gorgeous garage doors I have ever seen. They are made of a special sort of glass.

I didn't even know this was possible, but Googling showed me many images.

I didn’t even know this was possible, but Googling showed me many images of doors like these.

In a bed to the west of the house are three beautifully displayed small rhododendrons with soft indumentum under the leaves.

indumentum

indumentum

colour

They perfectly echo the colour of the house and remind me of one of my favourite gardening quotations:

People go through five stages of gardening. They begin by liking flowers, progress to flowering shrubs, then autumn foliage and berries; next they go for leaves, and then the undersides of leaves. -The Duchess of Devonshire

The east side of the house has a bay view. The lawn sweeps smoothly between their house and the Barclay house and on garden tour day, tour goers will be able to stroll back and forth between the two.

Willapa Bay

Willapa Bay, looking northeast

bay

looking southeast

looking southeast

We talked about how the tour day would be set up, which musician might play, and Nancy reminisced about the amazing food that Mr. Barclay served on tour day 2010!

envisioning

envisioning

I missed tour day at the Barclay garden. I had pre-toured the gardens that year with then tour organizer Patti Jacobsen; on tour day itself I was taking photos of Doggie Olympic Games and only got back to a few of the gardens. I quite missed out on a feast of cheese and wine and more at the Barclay garden that day.

the musician might be on this bay view patio nook.

the musician might be on this bay view patio nook.

a sheltered spot in case of inclement weather

a sheltered spot in case of inclement weather

SE corner of the house

SE corner of the house

looking southeast

a meticulously tended native landscape

looking southeast: a meticulously tended native landscape

From inside the house, the tall windows bring the light and view into play from every angle.

inside

imagine that patio with a musician...

imagine that patio with a musician…

light

Passing through the house, we began a detailed tour of the garden.

sculpture on west wall of house

sculpture on west wall of house

northwest garden bed

northwest garden bed
a perfectly placed Hebe

a perfectly placed Hebe

I quite like hebes and ended up with several photos of this one!

I quite like hebes, especially mound-shaped ones.

another hebe-centric view

another hebe-centric view

I fell in love with this perfectly mounded pale green plant:

plant

They told me it is a Kohuhu, and I found it’s a Pittosporum, and on Monrovia there maybe be more information about this very one if it is indeed ‘Golf Ball’. I must have this.

On the north west side of the house, a bed is anchored by mounds of Hebe. Note on the left a big Limelight Hydrangea in the background. We will see it again!

a little further west

a little further west with the hydrangea in the background

rhodo

a little closer

a little closer

garden beds and specimen trees

garden beds and specimen trees

a young Gingko

a young Gingko

a dwarf elm!

a dwarf elm!

I think the Elm is Ulmus x hollandica‘ Jacqueline Hillier’. Here’s a nice article about it.

more of the northwest garden

more of the northwest garden

rhodos

a rhododendron with small leaves

a rhododendron with small leaves

They told us this rhodo is covered with flowers in spring, pale pink as I recall. What a perfect property for gardeners who already have a great love for rhododendrons.

a person-like tree

If there ever was a tree that wanted a hug, it would be that one.

I love the shapes in this bed.

I love the shapes in this bed.

fluffy and pointy

fluffy and pointy

near the house

near the house….a huge cotoneaster??
and a wee hopping frog

and a wee hopping frog

Hydrangea 'Limelight'

Hydrangea ‘Limelight’

Hydrangea 'Limelight'

They call this their "bridge rhododendron".

They call this their “bridge rhododendron”.

sculpture

I am pleased to report that the patch of salal, below, is the last big patch left to be cleared. John and Stephen have succeeded in removing masses of the difficult and thuggish plant and this area will be next.

southside

goodbye salal

goodbye salal

an old,  shapely, tree-like cotoneaster

an old, shapely, tree-like cotoneaster

On the south side of the drive, John and Stephen have cleared, mostly by hand and chainsaw, alders and salal that were completely hiding the tree trunks.

south side

They save every fern they find.

south

As you can see, they carefully clean up each fern of last year’s foliage.

licorice fern on a tree

licorice fern…

an artistically bent tree

…on an artistically bent tree

trees

One of the areas where big trees came down in the 2007 windstorm will be planted with hollies and another with hydrangeas.

a bright spot in the forest

a bright spot in the forest…to be developed into a holly bed, I think

At the northwest side of the entire acreage is the old irrigation pond for the nursery that used to be here. In the near future, Stephen and John are planning to begin landscaping the banks.

reflection

pondtree

Beyond the pond is a meadow that provides a natural habitat for birds.

mown and unmown

mown and unmown

After this wonderful tour round the garden, we all walked back up to the house.

south side of driveway...with a little Hebe 'Quicksilver'

south side of driveway…with a little Hebe ‘Quicksilver’

John and Stephen’s knowledge of trees and shrubs far surpassed mine. Of course, I told them that Back Alley Gardens in Gearhart is the go to place around here for cool plants from Xera. They already knew about and had been to Dancing Oaks in Oregon; I suggested Cistus, Joy Creek and Gossler Farms. For an area that used to be the nursery parking lot and is terribly compacted, I suggested the book Beth Chatto’s Gravel Garden might have some ideas, and that for meadows any book by Piet Oudolf offers beautiful visions.

I look forward to having more plant talk with these well informed and talented gardeners and to seeing their garden next spring when all those rhodos are in bloom.

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I saw such a lovely garden today!  It deserves its own entry and since we are supposed to have five (some say eight!) inches of rain in the next two or three days, and high wind on Sunday, I am sure I will plenty of time to give to that story.

Meanwhile:  Work!

At the Post Office, an odd work related encounter occurred.  Yesterday at Olde Towne (during a stop to change compost buckets), Allan told me a man wanted to talk to me about work. He’d asked Allan and Allan had pointed me out and said I set the schedule.   I was chatting with Luanne and glanced up and saw a man standing outside.  I did not think much of it except I knew I would say we did not want any more jobs.  When we left with the compost bucket, the man was gone.  Today he came up to Allan in the post office  (where we have to go each day for our mail) and said in, I gather, an irritated way, “I guess you don’t want the work!”   He got into his vehicle right in front of where we were parked and almost spun his wheels in an angry-looking departure.  I was mystified till Allan explained.  What good fortune to not having taken on a job (say, if he had lured us with a fabulous garden full of collectible plants) for someone that crabby!  Yesterday, he had perhaps expected me to stop my conversation at Olde Towne and hustle right out to talk to him.  If he had come up to me, I could have given him a couple of phone numbers of other gardeners to try.

Today we did that one-off job of cleaning up the 42nd Street Café garden.   In the front, the pea gravel had ruched around and the underwear (the worst thin landscape fabric) showed.  While I was weeding along the north side, and cutting back some lady’s mantle, Allan did an amazing job of digging out a severely chopped hydrangea and redistributing the gravel so it looks good again.  (He also cut the fabric that was sticking up; he called it “dorsal fins”.  The fabric is no loss; it is so thin that weeds came right through.)  I did some of the weeding, but the excellent gravel work is almost all Allan’s.

before and after

before and after

We took time to clean up the triangle of soil at the south side of the garden (above, after picture, left!) , even though originally I did not think we would get that far in the time I had allotted to the job (a little over two hours).

The restaurant had an event planned for Saturday that would require, due to liquor regulations, for guests to entry through that usually unused red door and walk through the restaurant and out the main door into the parking lot.  There they would enjoy an old fashioned Oktoberfest with an oompah band, mermaids courtesy Queen La De Da, beer, sausages, and so on.

before

before

after

after

Meanwhile, on the north side, I dealt with the messy lady’s mantle and some bindweed.

before and after

before and after

The sad thing is that due to the threatening storm, the Oktoberfest for which we were preparing has been cancelled because of the weather forecast.  I asked restaurateur Blaine Walker if they could just have the event inside the restaurant; he said that a brass oompah band would be overwhelming in the smallish dining room!

When we were done with the garden clean up, Nancy Allen picked me up to go see the garden on the bay while Allan went on to Andersen’s RV Park to work some more.  Here is just a sneak peak of the garden I saw:

bay garden

and…..

hydrangea limelight

More to come as soon as stormy weather allows!

Two hours later, I rejoined Allan at Andersen’s.  He had been weeding behind the office.

The oriental poppies are reblooming.

The oriental poppies are reblooming.

The Bad Aster actually looks lovely (since I never seem to succeed in eradicating it).

clouds of blue asters

clouds of blue asters

Where once grew a thick meadow of annual poppies, the asters hid out all summer and have redeemed themselves.

west garden

west garden

Looking at the blue sky and feeling warm air, it was hard to believe tomorrow will bring a three day long storm.

With less than two hours till sunset, we left to fill the day in with some work in Long Beach.  Especially on my mind was the removal of some old woody Helichrysym italicum (curry plant).  I mainly like it because it smells so good and has silver foliage.  It does not come back as nicely when clipped as the silver Santolina.

The planter just north of Dennis Company had lost its bench to a curry plant and two lavenders.  Once the curry had been removed, the lavenders looked so misshapen that they had to go as well.

a sit spot reclaimed

a sit spot reclaimed

Two more curry plants came out in the planter near the Long Beach Gazebo.

before and after

before and after

That planter is plagued with a blue geranium that is not much of a rebloomer (Johnson’s Blue, maybe).  Every year I dig a lot of it out but it is such a runner that I would have to replace all the soil to get rid of it.  I have found it does rebloom lightly if cut back hard.

I cut back lavender in another planter and wanted to clean up under a street tree but I happened to see a shirtless young man noisily hack a big spitball into it.  Then he sat on the bench by the tree and smoked.  The joys of public gardening…. That tree garden will have to wait till later (with medical exam gloves on, which I usually do wear while gardening).

While Allan pulled Croscosmia ‘Lucifer’ from another planter and a tree, I did some cutting back at city hall.

Lavatera 'Barnsley'...city hall

Lavatera ‘Barnsley’…city hall

The Lavatera in the west side garden has halfway died back.  I would cut it back even harder than this to help it through the winter, but did not have time today so took out some big dead branches toward the front.  Then, although the sun was ominously low, I decided I had to clip the Escallonia and especially two Miscanthus variegatus (a favourite grass!) that were hanging out over the sidewalk.

before and after

before and after

I must address the Escallonia situation severely, but not at dusk.  I see they have gotten way too big.

loading the trailer as the sun sets

loading the trailer as the sun sets

As we drove out of the city works yard after dumping, the view down 6th street revealed we had worked for every last possible minute.  Or so I thought.

dusk

We had reason to celebrate today (about something outside of the blog story) so decided to go to The Hungry Harbor Grille for Mexican Fiesta night.  From our parking spot, I could see Veterans Field and realized we had not deadheaded the garden!  If the weather forecast was wrong and Columbia Pacific Farmers Market did not get rained out, we’d have to go back, or do it now.  So of course, I did it.  The flags show the complete calm….before the storm as with last Saturday night when we had a campfire in still, beautiful weather?  We’ll see.

warm and windless twilight

warm and windless twilight

Hungry Harbor Grille, logo by Don Nisbett

Hungry Harbor Grille, logo by Don Nisbett

the back room....In a little over two months, this area will be filled with the spectacular  annual Christmas Village display.

the back room….In a little over two months, this area will be filled with the spectacular annual Christmas Village display.

Hungry Harbor

Hungry Harbor

inside Hungry Harbor

inside Hungry Harbor: Reel Tasty

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Our north end day was slightly delayed by a stop at 42nd Street Café to find out what needed to be done for an emergency must-be-done-by-the-weekend weeding call I had gotten from the owner.  I have a thing for restaurants, so we will take on the project….tomorrow.

I like to get as many north end jobs done as possible on Wednesdays, and lately I like to go to Klipsan Beach Cottages first.  Owner Mary was getting sad when we would show up at the end of the day, while she and Denny were having dinner and wrapping up their own day, and there would be no time to visit.

I saw a striking sight from the road as we drove up and I walked out to photograph it.  I’m not sure whether to use it on their Facebook page or not.  It does sort of imply that it rains a lot here.

reflective pool

reflective pool

inside the fenced garden

inside the fenced garden

Coreopsis 'Flower Tower' taller than the greenhouse!

Coreopsis ‘Flower Tower’ taller than the greenhouse!

Mary and I wish we knew the name of the rose that she got as a gift.

Mary and I wish we knew the name of the rose that she got as a gift.

the cottages from just outside the fenced garden (looking west)

two of the eight cottages from just outside the fenced garden (looking west)

Next, we deadheaded Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ at the little Oman Builders Supply garden.

OBS garden

OBS garden

At the Wiegardt Gallery, we planted the three Ilex ‘Sky Pencil’ that last week just got a scenic tour of the Peninsula and went back home because weather was still too hot and dry.  It had definitely turned wet enough now.

Wiegardt Gallery, west wall, before

Wiegardt Gallery, west wall, before

after, with three Ilex added

after, with three Ilex added

They will make a difference, especially when I get two more.  I just do not understand why they are so hard to come by, when they are such good doers and deer resistant.  This garden used to have two Escallonias, but Eric thought they were too big, so I hope the Ilex will give some tall structure without being annoying.

We also added an Echinacea ‘Green Jewel’ to a newly cleared bed on the south side.  It looks better than any I put in the ground earlier this year and I hope it has gotten big enough to survive any slugs and snails, as they seem to love this plant.

a green jewel

a green jewel

I was at a bit of a loss regarding where to go next.  Golden Sands?  Marilyn’s?  Marilyn’s won out, as we had not gone there last week.  It still bugs me that the alders were limbed so high…

alders

 

But to get a sense of enclosure back, I am thinking the sterile Buddliea that is in the west garden might be just the right size.

Buddleai 'Blueberry Cobbler'

Buddleia ‘Blueberry Cobbler’

I really don’t want to transplant that one, so I hope I can find another one.  Asian Moon, Purple Haze, or the orange Sweet Marmalade would be good if I can just get my hands on one.

Marilyn's, looking north from by the back porch

Marilyn’s, looking north from by the back porch

Marilyn’s daughter, Nancy, has been posting some photos of the deer who live in this garden.

Nancy’s deer photos:

deer

deer

549583_10201315410279639_1070166195_n

 

We still had time to check on Golden Sands Assisted Living garden, which we also skipped last week.  I got two more patches of wild beach strawberries pulled:

SE quadrant

SE quadrant

Still need to get all the way around the back of the SE quadrant….

SW quadrant

SW quadrant

But the southwest quadrant is done!

The strawberries were as thick as the ones on the outside of the landscape timbers.

Allan moved the bench, making even more solidly sittable than it was before.

in 2011.  For a long time it has sat in front of the NW quadrant.

in 2011. For a long time the bench has sat in front of the NW quadrant.

Now the garden can be seen!  (such as it is)

Now the garden can be seen! (such as it is)

The bench is much better here.

The bench is much better here.

What a mess awaits us in the NW quadrant.  Strawberries, up in everyone’s business.

Gah!

Gah!

The soil is tight and rubbly, but once we spend another partial day and get this weeded, we can bring in a load of cow fiber and turn this into a place of beauty.  I have a stash of plants donated by Sheila and Kathleen S. that have been waiting since July (for the sprinkler system to be fixed) to be added to this garden.

Golden Sands: happy rose because of working sprinklers (and rain)

Golden Sands: happy rose because of working sprinklers (and rain)

While at Golden Sands, I got a call and a text from Nancy Allen asking if I could accompany her to a potential garden tour garden tomorrow.  She is already looking ahead to the July 2014 tour.  Can I resist a chance to look at a garden?  Never.  So on the way south, Allan and I added a check up on the Anchorage Cottages garden in order to make tomorrow easier.  (My promise to do that one off weeding job to 42nd Street Café,  and a predicted Friday storm have made the schedule tight for Thursday.)

At the Anchorage:  Allan found this many pampas plumes broken by Sunday's wind.

At the Anchorage: Allan found this many pampas plumes broken by Sunday’s wind.

Manager Beth added this lovely birdbath.

Manager Beth added this lovely birdbath.

Someone, not us, did a nice job of pruning the Escallonia iveyi so one of the Anchorage signs shows better.  When I was taking a photo of it and the cleaned up pampas grass, I noticed more pampas plumes bent over and we had to clip them before we left.

to the left, bent pampas

to the far left, bent pampas

pink pampas plumes at The Anchorage

pink pampas plumes at The Anchorage

I think all the many Pampas grasses at the Anchorage were planted by Dan Hinkley because he and Robert Jones designed the garden for Robert’s sister who used to own the place!

Ironically, our last mission of the day was to tag some large grasses, including one Pampas, and a couple of Phormiums that the port crew are going to remove from the Howerton gardens on Friday.  (If you want to go down there and hang around and try to snag the plants, maybe you could!)  In the curbside garden, these plants block the sightlines and have to go.

Allan tagging a grass by the Loading Dock Village

Allan tagging a grass by the Loading Dock Village

Two more tagged by the much missed old Port Bistro café

Two more tagged by the much missed old Port Bistro café

I want to see the last of this grass and Phormium by Pelicano Restaurant's parking lot.

I want to see the last of this grass and Phormium by Pelicano Restaurant’s parking lot.

When pulling out of several parking lots along Howerton, too-tall plants can block the sight of oncoming traffic.  These plants were not chosen or installed by me, but of course we are the ones who have to chop the darn things down once a year…and that is not enough.  We will replace them with smaller grasses.

This phormium by Powell Gallery must go...it pokes into the sidewalk area.

This phormium by Powell Gallery must go…it pokes into the sidewalk area.

It seems a shame to have to take out the big Pampas grass at its prettiest time, but when it is gone, one will be able to see the sign for Marie Powell’s studio.

Pampas

Pampas

And I am sick of cutting it down.  It’s bad enough to deal with all the Pampas at the Anchorage!  And it also blocks the Pelicano restaurant sign.  Imagine, below, that my shadow is a driver of a car…who cannot see the Pelicano sign at all.

just a glimpse shows of the restaurant sign

just a glimpse shows of the restaurant sign

I am curious whether this fine restaurant’s business will increase when that grass has been replaced with a smaller one.

I took mercy on one centrally located Phormium.  It is so small now…perhaps it is a dwarf cultivar, or just young.

It has escaped the ax for now.

It has escaped the ax for now.

I love ornamental grasses, and even though Randy Powell asked me to do so, I have been refusing to cut the one by his door because it is at its best right now.

not for the chop yet if I can help it!

not for the chop yet if I can help it!

We stopped ever so briefly at Larry and Robert’s garden to add a bucket of river rock to their back garden.  The setting sun was just catching a tree with autumn colour.

autumn

autumn

At home, I watered the tomato and pepper plants in the greenhouse.  A cat drama entertained me in the front garden.

The neighbours' cat, hiding

The neighbours’ cat, hiding in Allan’s garden

I thought it was my Calvin at first till I realized this cat is much smaller.

encounter with Frosty

encounter with Frosty

Onyx

Onyx

further lurking in the front garden

further lurking in the front garden

Neighbour cats from all directions always seem to prefer our garden to their own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Monday, September 23, 2013

We drove off with some optimism to the post office and bank, and were met with such a rainfall that we were ready to give up on work.  A rainy day off is not nearly as nice if one does not sleep in and stay in (or go to Olde Towne Café) from the very beginning.  As we pulled back into our driveway, I saw sun behind clouds and rain.

a good sign? over the garage

a good sign? over the garage

looking west on Lake Street...blue sky calls us back to work.

looking west on Lake Street…blue sky calls us back to work.

We headed up to Andersen’s RV Park, one of our most weather exposed resort jobs.  I thought it might have been seriously wind battered as the wind had been reported as 51 mph in Ocean Park.  The only damage was one big cosmos down at Payson Hall!

Payson Hall planters

Payson Hall planters

The planters tidied up well but are showing their end of the season age…

I am tired of deadheading Agyranthemum 'Butterfly'!!

I am tired of deadheading Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’!!

In the garden by the office back door, some Oriental Poppies want to do a second bloom.

Will they make it?

Will they make it?

autumnal:  Sedumn 'Autumn Joy' and Schizostylis.

autumnal: Sedumn ‘Autumn Joy’ and Schizostylis.

My pale pink Schizostylis are either Mrs. Haggerty or Viscountess Byng, not sure which!

The sweet peas got a slow start but are still blooming.

picket fence garden at Andersen's

picket fence garden at Andersen’s

The park was pretty full for a weekday in late September, so I was glad we had gone to tidy up the garden.

just over the dunes: the ocean

just over the dunes: the ocean

In the yearly lull between the end of tourist festivals and Bulb Hell, we have time to do all sorts of little jobs that we’ve put off.  For the rest of Monday, we worked on getting the damnable Geranium ‘A.T. Johnson’ out from under some of the Long Beach street trees.  Who was the dingbat who planted them?  Oh, that would be me, back when the budget was so small I was looking for free plants to fill in.

all cleaned up with hardy Fuchsias added

all cleaned up with hardy Fuchsias added

A quick walk around our own garden in the evening revealed a Lobelia tupa in bud!  But the poor thing is laying sideways, swamped by Geranium ‘Rozanne’.  I still love Rozanne because she does not reseed all over the place like A.T. does.

Lobelia tupa:  I will transplant this one later.

Lobelia tupa: I will transplant this one later.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

I slept through loud thunder and lightning, I’m told, but did wake up to hear truly torrential rain on the roof.  Blue skies with white clouds greeted our departure for work.  We stopped at Olde Towne specifically to deadhead one fallen gladiola in a planter out front.  I did not mean to plant silly tall glads in those planters;  years ago I thought I was planting Gladiolus nanus.  The tall ones still pop up here and there and I leave them because they amuse me.

I had realized the previous week when looking for an old photo on the Olde Towne Facebook page (which I set up), that the photos in this year’s album make it look like there is a clique of my friends Judy, Patt, and Donna!  That’s because no one else is adding photos and I am usually there for coffee with those three.  Today, Cat promised to take some photos of other people; she goes there often to use the wireless so should get a good selection of folks.

Cat herself; she's an excellent photographer

Cat herself; she’s an excellent photographer

We procrastinated a bit too long, then we were off to Casa Pacifica, our job that is off the Peninsula (to the east a few miles).

stunning maple and Sedum 'Autumn Joy'

stunning maple and Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’

I got such a big bag of Acidanthera that I stuck them into many gardens, including the whiskey barrels at Casa Pacifica.

Acidanthera, late blooming

Acidanthera, late blooming and not very hardy

It took Dusty a little while to figure out I was there, but when he did he came out with a stogie.

My good friend.

My good friend.

The very shy Spook let me take a couple of photos….

Spook on the hot tub cover

Spook on the hot tub cover

spook

Then, despite my usual attempts to woo her, she hid under the deck.  I won the other dogs over with treats, but not Spook.

As we weeded and deadheaded, the sky kept seeming to lower itself onto the surrounding trees.

a heavy sky

a heavy sky

I got the barrels deadheaded and a Buddleia cut back and some weeding in the upper garden….

autumn hydrangea and Stipa gigantea

autumnal hydrangea and Stipa gigantea

As thunder rumbled and the sky got darker.

We almost had everything done...

We almost had everything done…

but got caught in a downpour!

but got caught in a downpour!

rain

A lot of visitors to the household meant we had to back down the driveway to a turn around place, and then there was not enough room to turn so Allan had to take the trailer off in the deluge and then hook it up again.  We almost slipped off the road and I was screaming a bit.  Just a bit.  It seemed after that that a nice break at Oldie Townie was in order.  By the time we got there, the sun was re-emerging, but we stopped for lunch anyway.  Only at this lull between work seasons do we have the luxury of slacking off from work this often.

a lunch group at Olde Towne

a lunch group at Olde Towne

We did stir ourselves back out again after a nice lunch of tortilla soup.  Mexican hot chocolate for Allan, Chai latte for me warmed us up.

We deadheaded at the Depot Restaurant…

Most of the cosmos flowers were limp and rain drenched.

Most of the cosmos flowers were limp and rain drenched.

I thought we might then go to Long Beach town and take some old, woody curry plants out of the planters.  Then I remembered that the Boreas Inn should be checked for storm damage to the garden.

It still looked pretty good once we removed some broken cosmos stems.

It still looked pretty good once we removed some broken cosmos stems.

looking west

looking west

Owner Susie was there and told me she is very much enjoying the newish garden off the back porch of the inn.  (Allan got it all nicely weeded and fluffy.)

between Boreas and Yett Cottage

between Boreas and Yett Cottage

We never made it to Long Beach, because Susie asked if we could prune a big rhodendron, just to lighten it up.  It was a job where it is helpful if one person goes inside the shrub and waves branches and the other one says what to cut.  We removed about four wheelbarrow loads full, and afterward the shrub still looked natural, which is the kind of pruning job we like.

before

before

after

after

before

before

after

after

I can’t bring it any lower because it provides some privacy from the neighboring house.

sit spot in the entry garden

sit spot in the entry garden: Boreas Inn

I scored a nice windowbox that Susie, for some reason, no longer wants!

nice!

nice!

Just as we left, an hour before dusk, the rain returned.  Shortly after we pulled up to our garage, it became another torrential downpour.

from our front porch

from our front porch

I was waiting for a rainbow because the sky to the west had some sunshine.

Allan's garden

Allan’s garden

looking north from the sunporch...behind the drying garlic

looking north from the sunporch…behind the drying garlic

And here comes the rainbow…

over the crabapple tree

over the crabapple tree

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

The rain was still heavy but we both walked out into it to try to get more rainbow photos.

rain pouring off the shed...

rain pouring off the shed…

and off the house

and off the house

Allan's photo: over the hops vine

Allan’s photo: over the hops vine

The rainbow got progressively brighter.

over the greenhouse

over the greenhouse

over the garden

over the garden

arc

back garden

front garden

front garden

gold

over Lake Street

over Lake Street

Nora's barberry

Nora’s barberry

rainbow

over School Hill

over School Hill

over our neighbours' house

over our neighbours’ house

fading away

fading away

The amazing thing was that I did not get water spots on the lens with all that dashing about in the rain!

And after that…the blogging about it.

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Sunday, September 22, 2013

The storm arrived as predicted, I am told at about three or four AM.  I slept through that part.  By eight thirty the roaring wind had me awake and I got up after awhile to root for the danger tree to fall harmlessly.  It didn’t. After reaching 60 mph at Cape Disappointment (just to our southwest) and 50 mph in Ocean Park,the wind completely died down in the early afternoon.  I had been planning to spend the entire day inside but I just couldn’t when the weather got unexpectedly lovely.

A walk around the garden revealed the garden boat Cosmos had gone all sideways.

What a shame!

What a shame!

The Cosmos between me and Nora’s house also took a battering.

wind tunnel

wind tunnel

The rest of the garden looked normal…   Allan took the opportunity to mow the lawn.

Allan  mowing in the distance

Allan mowing in the distance

Not one branch had come off the danger tree,  but some large pieces of bark had fallen.

shedding its bark

shedding its bark

where the bark came from

where the bark came from

Next door in Nora’s back yard more wood had come down than in ours, so I collected some for a future campfire.

Smokey helped, as usual.

Smokey helped, as usual.

I could not muster much interest in cutting back plants in the garden.  My excuse is that they make a good home for our tree frog populations.  The good weather did not allow me to have my day indoors so I decided to take a puddle walk.  Rain always creates good photo opportunities on our not quite level streets.

needles windswept into patterns in our neighbour's driveway

needles windswept into patterns in our neighbour’s driveway

house for sale across the street and two doors down.

house for sale across the street and two doors down.

in the middle of Lake Street

in the middle of Lake Street

windfall at Lake and Advent

windfall at Lake and Advent

from this tree

from this tree

I thought about walking to the beach below Yellow Bluff but had not checked the tide.  So I turned to the port on Advent Street.

in the port parking lot...a boat thing.

in the port parking lot…a boat thing.

When I saw the marina, I knew it was a good thing I had not gone to Yellow Bluff.  High tide would have prevented walking along the river beach there.

high tide at Ilwaco marina, looking east

high tide at Ilwaco marina, looking east

high tide sky

high tide sky, looking west

looking east

looking east

Since yesterday, Don Nisbett Art Gallery and the Port Office hanging baskets had been removed.  The office ones were stashed safely behind the building, while Don’s sat on the south side.

a sure sign of autumn

a sure sign of autumn

I wonder if the baskets will be re-hung?  The ones in Long Beach town are down for the year now.  I had brought my clippers with me and attended to a few broken stems in the port office garden.

As I walked toward Jessie’s, I kept hearing the strangest squawking.

Jessie's high tide...

Jessie’s high tide…

Finally I located the source on a boat by the last dock ramp.

boat

parrot

This view would have been such a different picture two hours before, if I could have stood up to the wind:

boat bird

after the storm

Below, all kinds of fish hauling carts are lined up on the entry to the docks.

looking east from Jessie's

looking east from Jessie’s

I walked around to the west side of Jessie’s to see if perhaps a boat was offloading…but of course, no one had been out fishing in the storm.

Jessie's west wall

Jessie’s west wall

working boats at rest

working boats at rest

I expected to find a lot of wind damage at the boatyard garden on First Avenue.  It looked surprisingly good.

boatyard garden, looking north

boatyard garden, looking north

Some cosmos was a little sideways

Some cosmos was a little sideways

Some was broken, but not as much as I expected.

Some was broken, but not as much as I expected.

cosmos

The Cosmos in my garden boat at home had fared worse than most of the ones at the boatyard.

Aster 'Harrington's Pink'

Aster ‘Harrington’s Pink’

I picked up some windblown trash and when I went back to the boatyard wheelie bin, I saw that the boat washing station looked like one of those infinity pools.

telephoto

telephoto

not telephoto

not telephoto

Then, sighting north up First Avenue, I saw that the street planters still looked pretty good , so I turned to walk home through the interesting alley to the north of one of the Jessie’s Ilwaco Fish Co buildings.

looking east

looking east

interesting stuff!

interesting stuff!

stuff

crab pot reflecting pool

crab pot reflecting pool

There’s a second boatyard to the east end of the alley where boats are stored while not being worked on.

storage yard

storage yard

I kept on walking too noisily and a lot of little brown birds had flown off of the crab pots, but bathing crows were fearless.

one of the crows

one of the crows

Not THAT fearless; I did use the telephoto.  I will have to do better at not scaring the little brown birds so I can get some photos for the amusement of ace bird photographer Mr. Tootlepedal.

The storage yard is home, permanently as far as I can tell, to some very old boats whose stories I would like to hear.

Warrior of the Seas

Warrior of the Seas

on the north side of the alley

on the north side of the alley

by the old Kola Brothers boathouses

by the old Kola Brothers boathouses

gulls resting up in the port parking lot

gulls resting up in the port parking lot

I have absolutely no idea what THIS boat thing is:

mysterious thingie

mysterious thingie…some sort of trailer

Having done my duty by enjoying the garden and a walk, I retreated to my desk, glad to get back to some sorely postponed computer work that I’d been planning to spend the whole day on.

dusky view from my window

dusky view from my window

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