Monday, 2 December 2013
I have a little entry written about the Dragon Loyalty award but have delayed it. The end of bulb time is so exciting that it must be announced today.
This morning I woke to sunshine, followed by the thunderous sound of hail. Allan took some photos:
We had a plan to go overseas for some mundane grocery shopping and a gander at artificial Christmas trees….but first, because the final box of bulbs had come, we went to work.
Yes, we worked. In fact, as we plugged along planting a few bulbs here and there, I thought that maybe we should work all day and get the mulching done at Andersen’s RV Park as well.
Yesterday when Allan was doing his non-planting part of bulb time, tidily putting all the sorting bags back in a box for storage till next year, he found a bag containing five iris reticulata. Fortune was kind, as I had written “Larry” on the bag so knew whose bulbs they were! It just happened to be the bag that had sat near the top of the milk crate of his sorted bulbs ; I write the client name on a couple of the topmost bags in case the sharpie label gets smudged on the crate itself. I did pretty well at fishing all the bulbs out of all the bags; Allan only found about ten more strays, small bulbs stuck into the folds.
We then planted four Oriental and Orienpet lilies at the Depot Restaurant: ‘Salinas’, ‘Scarlet Delight’, ‘Friso’, ‘Purple Prince’. And then on to the Fifth Street Park in Long Beach.
Below, you can see where the crew is digging a hole for the device that will make the clam squirt when given a quarter.
I planted three Camassia leichtlinii in the dampish garden by the Fifth Street restrooms. There, the hail had still not melted.
While arranging the crocus in Long Beach, I realized how well they would look in the window boxes at The Anchorage Cottages, so:
All the crocus planting made me realize that there WAS a place at the Depot where tiny, early species crocus would show off well: the new area we cleared just east of the dining room window. So back we went on the way home.
Just to the east, behind the Oceanside Animal Clinic, a staff member was walking that adorable puppy who had been rescued with a cord tied around his little leg. His leg had had to be amputated, and he has learned how to walk and potty just fine.
As we drove home, rain began….so no guilt about going across the river and missing work time. I so very much want to find out if the O Falafel! lunch stand is open in the winter and have another amazing shwarma…but with low temperatures expected around five PM, I did not want to be driving back in the dark. So we went straight to Home Depot (a big box store that I am not crazy about supporting, and yet…they had a wide selection of artificial trees). None of which appealed to me. Then to Costco for groceries, and then as far as the Fred Meyer parking lot, for more groceries. The parking lot was white with hail and packed with cars and I could picture the long waits at the check stand. Was it worth it to save a bit on our regular groceries (milk, some fruit, a veg?)? No indeed, so back home we went and to my delight got there with an hour of daylight left.
I had been thinking how satisfying it would be to get the bulbs all in the ground today. Certainly the narrative flow would be better if bulb day 19 was also the last bulb day. More importantly, I wanted to get them into the ground before it froze, and with cold temperatures predicted, I went straight out into the back garden and got busy….because all the rest of the bulbs were mine.
I almost immediately had to take shelter from a rain squall.
An arc of sunlight on the greenhouse ceiling was as close as I came to seeing a rainbow.
I persevered and got the bulbs in: 16 lilies, 11 Alliums, 4 Camassia, and about 170 crocuses. I could feel the temperature falling and partway through the crocuses had to go in and run my hands under warm water. The last 50 crocuses went in willy nilly: dig a hole, drop the corm in with numb fingers and hope it landed upright.
This afternoon’s was the first miserable bulbing session of this year’s bulb time. Up till now, the weather has been fine and mild. What used to be Bulb Hell went smoothly. Our new large vehicle made it easy to deal with the crates of sorted bulbs. The weather prevented cold hands and no rain fell on the paper bags after they were set out in gardens before planting, so all the bags are reusable for next year. We planted a total of 5,575 bulbs and I now declare Bulb Time 2013 to be officially over!
I took a quick tour of the garden at dusk:
While the innocuous and soothing green of the gear shed next door makes an adequate back drop, I look forward to getting some evergreens planted in that back corner of the garden.
Nora told me she used to be able to see Saddle Mountain (in northern Oregon) from her back porch before that gear shed was built.
Look at the colour on this maple seedling that I got from our friend and client Ann’s garden:
It will go back in the Danger Tree bed, once Danger Tree has been dealt with one way or another. Here is the mother tree, planted 20 years ago in Ann’s garden:
I wonder if the little tree that I have in a pot is going to come out with different fall colour, as it seems redder, or is that its youthfulness?
As another part of the closure of bulb time, Allan took all the cardboard bulb shipping boxes, large and small, to be recycled. He was gone for quite awhile as he had decided to do the rest of the shopping at Sid’s IGA in Seaview. On the way back, he stopped to photograph the Christmas lights at Olde Towne Trading Post.
Oh, just a few more workdays till staycation when I can while away many the hour here!
My reward: Peppermint Bark from Costco, a seasonal treat that I love. Like most treats I love, it is not healthy but so satisfying with a nice cuppa tea.