Monday, 20 April 2015
I continued to work on my rather overwhelming garden, while Allan went to weed the terribly weedy garden at the community building, a project that I foolishly agreed to last week. I so appreciated him deciding to get that started rather than taking a day off. Here’s the problem: I need time off more than I need money at the moment, and so does he. We can’t afford to retire for several years, but we can afford to cut back…and yet, how can we with so many jobs? Then I think…we should keep working like mad in case we have medical bills before medicare age (as in insurance co-pays and deductibles, something you UK readers don’t have to worry about). And THEN I think, as Allan has pointed out, NOW is the time to have more time off while we are healthy enough to still enjoy it. I remind myself that my mother was able to garden till age 82…but that was with me helping her. She could garden on her own till about age 77…I hope I am as fortunate. She retired at age 55, and that may have contributed to her years of healthiness.
my day at home
Before he left for work, Allan caught this bird checking out one of the birdhouses.
The first thing I heard when I finally got outside at noon-ish was a great roar out beyond the bogsy wood, and I saw that the south gate was mysteriously wide open. I don’t know how long it had been that way. On the way out, I checked for a herd of deer in the garden. None could be found, and the roses did not appear to be eaten.
Smokey followed me all the way out.
The sound was from a big mower beyond the trees, and some sort of tree-mauler that was cutting down some of the willow that had sprouted up on the edge of the lawn between the port parking lots and us.
The view at noon. I still have strimmed to the bench by the seasonal pond.
The noise got louder and all the willows started to shake. I hoped that all the little frogs could hop fast. It must have been a bad time for them.
at 1:05 outside the gate, with the big machine tearing at the big willows
Fortunately, the trunks of the two big willows are on our property, which runs roughly to the middle of the ditch.
the view to the south at 1:30
Well. We will certainly have a better view of what is going on down at the port now. Poor little frogs, though. (Update: For the next several nights, I could hear the frogs peeping from the other ends of the ditch, but not from the middle part that had been mown and chopped.)
The seasonal pond all covered with floating wood chips.
I’m glad I left a long grass frog haven on my side.
I had asked Allan to move two planted chairs all the way from a corner of the front garden to somewhere that they did not have to be shifted for weeding. I like where he put them, in the salmonberry groves:
While all the tree-ripping was going on, I got much planting done: two trays of Nicotiana langsdorfii and several assorted Agastaches (‘Apricot Sunsrise’, ‘Summer Glow’, ‘Tutti Frutii’, ‘Cotton Candy’, ‘Sangria’, and ‘Mexican Giant’).
Later, I got my new Hellebores in and my two birthday plants.
I found that this new area was really pretty much full, if I am to leave proper room between plants.
my new little bloodroot right at the edge of the new garden bed
a cool pulsatilla about to bloom
in another bed, two little noses coming up…very big event for a CPN
My new candy lily seemed right for the mini-scree bed.
Yesterday, when Debbie came to pick up plants for the Master Gardener plant sale (I’m not in the MGs, although I did take the course years ago), she gave me a flower sculpture by Sue Raymond of Bay Avenue Gallery
. I installed it today, placing it where I could tie the stake to a post.
I love this exotic flower.
our garden boat, the Ann Lovejoy
in the boat: Tulip ‘Green Wave’
Tulip ‘Angelique’ (pretty sure, although that green flame confuses me)
Tulip ‘Akebono’ and ‘Green Wave’ in bud
More ‘Green Wave’ because it is my favourite this week.
Tulip ‘Green Star’
After the work done by the port staff, our view corridor is back. The garden was designed around this in the first place.
When we first moved here in October 2010, the bogsy woods was thick with junk and brambles and we cleared a path through and eventually build the fence and the south gate; outside the gate is only lightly gardened on occasion and is a haven for happy frogs. Below, the bottom photo shows the area which is the view corridor now.
what our woods looked like in Oct. 2010 when we bought the place
To whoever it was who did one of those annoying blog posts about words and phrases that she or he never wanted to read in another gardening blog, and included “view corridor”: Oh, well!
The east bed still has lots of small (for now!) weeds and will be my next big project.
The west bed is pretty well weeded except for a strip all along the back side, and an area behind the blue chairs.
that tall heather from the front garden…I keep trying to appreciate it more. I think I like it best in a pot.
I had a feeling my brand new narrow leaved Hosta ‘Stiletto’ would be slug food. Dang it.
Next to it, the hosta I got from Mary Fluaitt when she moved away is proving to be very strong, just like its former owner.
I’m loving the bronzy top knot on this mahonia in Allan’s garden.
Another look at the results of the weekend’s main projects…the front border…
…and the northeast corner.
my double file viburnum on the west side of the garage (deer proof!)
my lovely silver nameus forgettii (Help me remember?)
One fringed Tulip ‘Aleppo’ has returned from a planting a few years old.
I got my new outdoor sit spot almost back…for now. It will fill again quickly when annuals planting time arrives in a couple of weeks.
my sit spot two days ago
and this evening
Allan’s day on
Meanwhile, Allan had nobly gone to weed at the community center for seven and a half hours. Perhaps because his area of our garden is small (by his choice, as he has boating and motorcycling as hobbies as well as gardening, unlike my one-track mind), he is more willing to give up a day off.
Ilwaco Community Building
The gardens are all on the west side of the building, which houses our beloved Ilwaco Timberland Library, a low cost lunch room for seniors, Ilwaco City Council meetings and Toastmaster meetings. We have declined this gardening job several times. Now it seems there is just NO ONE else willing to take it on, and even though we feel a great need for free time, a love for Ilwaco has trumped all and we are going to try to do it. By try, I mean we will see how long we can stand it.
Here are Allan’s photos:
He started at the driveway entrance with the theory that is best to do the areas first that are parked next to or walked past by Ilwaco Timberland Library patrons. The first area gave him hope that the job might go quickly. The kinnickinnick sprawls around and while I feel it is kind of boring looking, there were not many weeds.
before and after; maybe someone else had pulled bindweed out of here earlier.
When he moved on the the top of two tiers between the parking lot and the sidewalk, he knew this was more than a one day job. (Last year, we saw someone weeding for a whole week in these beds. We wish she was still doing it!)
top tier, before
I look upon this with despair as I can’t stand heather in a flat garden. The other day a friend said that even though the boatyard garden is so very long, it helped to have interesting plants to weed among. I am going to have to do something with this garden to make it more interesting to me if we are going to keep it in the long term. Allan just quietly stated that he doesn’t like the heathers, either, nor does he like the fact that there is nothing flowering in the garden in the summer. He also commented, and of course I agree, that it is a pain to have salal in the garden because it is popping up through everything, including the heather. If we keep this job long term, the salal is going to be our mortal enemy. (I think it is just lovely in the wild woods, by the way.)
behind the sign, before
strip along the sidewalk, before
another area along the sidewalk, before
How did we get into this? It is one job I firmly did not want to take on because it has bindweed, horsetail, and, quite frankly, I am only interested in maintaining gardens we have created, with just a couple of exceptions. (Mayor Mike’s pretty little garden comes to mind because it was designed by a friend of mine who moved away, and I like it.)
I remember when the garden was being developed by a group of volunteers and I saw the big pile of dirt that they were planning to put back in. I said “No! No! Don’t use that; it is FULL of BINDWEED!” Bindweed was sprouting up all over it. There was a chance that if that soil, dug out during the re-do of the parking lot, was just discarded, some of the bindweed would go away. However, even a few little roots left down in the ground would easily create a menace within a year. (I don’t know if that soil was re-used or not.)
The entrance garden: the outside was fine, as if someone has already weeded it.
Last time I saw the area above, it had dandelions. We wonder if someone else is still doing part of the job and if there is going to be some mix up about us being hired.
the entrance garden behind the wall, which we quite like, before
after, with ferns trimmed
The last area that remained is the hardest, a tiered garden covered with vetch, bindweed, and a haze of other weeds.
a before photo of an area he did not get to today. What a mess of vetch obscuring all the good plants.
After some weeding. This area is steeply tiered and would be hard on my knee.
I can already see in my mind some Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ and Eryngium migrating from my garden over to the bare areas in the community building garden. Free plants would fit in well with the budget, and would add some summer colour. Some clumps of baby poppies could perhaps be moved up from the boatyard, as there are certainly MORE than enough poppies in that garden. With that sort of change, I could get up more enthusiasm for this new job.
When Allan got home, I said he should have a look at the work the port crew had done at the south end of our property. He went and took this photo from the outside, and said something about going in there and prettying it up with a better sawing job. Otherwise, he agreed that it is a positive thing to have our view of the port returned. You can even see our sitting bench now.
our property, south side, now
Tomorrow, we must get back to work if the weather allows. The forecast is iffy. There are new roses to plant and fertilizer to apply at Jo’s garden.
Postscript: Tuesday’s weather, drizzly with 23 mile an hour winds, inspired me to take another day off. Allan worked a tiny bit, digging up about a dozen drab roses at Jo’s garden in preparation for planting some new ones, and helping Ed Strange shift some pots of bamboo at the Boreas Inn. I had time to write a paean of praise to The Big Tiny and have set it to be a bonus book post tonight.
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