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Archive for Apr, 2016

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Much as I wanted another day off to keep weeding at home, we needed to work or we’d fall behind…especially since I had garden touring plans for Thursday.

Mike’s garden

We began our work day pulling little weeds and deadheading narcissi and tulips at Mayor Mike’s garden.

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Mike’s ornamental cherry in bloom

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me and Mike admiring

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Pieris and flowering cherry (Allan’s photo)

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Tulips ‘Green Star’, ‘Greenland’, and ‘Virichic’

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Tulip ‘Green Wave’

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Tulip ‘Green Wave’ is my favourite tulip of all.

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Tulip ‘White Parrot’

Just as I pruned back the hardy fuchsia so that the parrot tulips and the Scrophularia variegata would show, my lower back went SPROING.  Usually I can count on my back being strong.  The spasming out of alignment led to some unpleasant moments over the next two days.  However, work must go on and it’s not as bad as the slipped discs and other back ills that some friends have had.

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Tulip ‘White Parrot’

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I suppose we should prune the boxwoods.  I wish they would grow enough to blend together.

Ilwaco

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our volunteer garden at the post office

We did some post office weeding and I heard that there is a new postmaster.  I hope he like an exuberant flower garden and does not prefer lawn or one rhododendron.  I experienced some anxiety as I weeded, bending over very carefully because of the back wonkiness.

Next, Allan completely re-did an overgrown Ilwaco planter, for which no one thought to take a before photo.  It had lots of narcissi, and two valerian and three geums (I have no idea who planted them as was certainly not me).

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during (Allan’s photo)

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after (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo: Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ ringed with golden oregano, golden thyme, variegated oregano, Diascia ‘Blackthorn Apricot’, and a little dusky sedum,

We planted a few more plants in the Ilwaco planters and checked to make sure the new plants from last week were damp enough.

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adding some diascias (Allan’s photo)

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a stray viola got a little drink of water (Allan’s photo)

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This one had ALREADY had a brand new lemon thyme stolen out of it.

If someone steals today’s ‘Blackthorn Apricot’ diascias, I am going to be very very very sad.  Maybe these thieves think I have an endless supply of replacement plants.  In fact, I don’t even have access to more choice lemon thymes OR Blackthorn Apricots and I CANNOT REPLACE THEM.  This is not a big city with an endless supply of good nursery plants.

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The fire station garden continues to cry out to me for help.

We stopped off at home for a few more plants.

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Tulips ‘Flaming Spring Green’and ‘Spring Green’ at home

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Tulip ‘Leo’

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Ribes speciosum has been blooming for weeks.

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Davidia ‘Sonoma’ flowers

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Davidia ‘Sonoma’

Ilwaco Boatyard garden

While Allan pulled grass and horsetail from the boatyard garden, I replanted lots of narcissi that we had removed from the overcrowded Ilwaco planters, along with the valerian and geums from today’s planter project, and then helped finish the weeding.  It was not a perfect weeding job; that will wait till just before the annual children’s parade (April 30th this year).  I try to balance perfection with not overdoing our clients’ landscape maintenance budgets, so today’s job was to just keep the garden from looking like the horsetail was winning.

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Allan’s photo, before, north end boatyard garden (looking south)

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the horsetail, huge and fierce (Allan’s photo)

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horsetail (Allan’s photo); the curse of this garden

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after (Allan’s photo)

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Allan hung some new signs

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chatting with Port Office Nancy

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meanwhile, in the boatyard (Allan’s photo)

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south end of boatyard garden

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poppies

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Allan’s photo

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sparaxis (Allan’s photo)

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Stipa gigantea flowers

We finished by deadheading narcissi along Howerton Avenue.

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by the Ilwaco Pavilion

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love Helianthemum, wish they bloomed longer.

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Allan’s photo: California poppies

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transplanting an old, tired Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ in hopes of a bit more bloom from it.

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I got to pet this nice dog named ‘Fahrv’ as in “Farvenugen: It’s what makes a car a Volkswagen.” Allan thinks it named itself.

Blissfully for me, the hot weather was about to end with a cooling fog hanging over the Columbia River.

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east of the marina

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welcome grayness

(For those who enjoy the excerpts from my mother’s old garden diaries: There was no entry corresponding with today’s date.)

 

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Sunday, 17 April 2016

Not only had we been looking forward to having dinner with Todd at Dave and Melissa’s place in Oysterville, but I had been eagerly anticipating meeting their chicken flock, petting their dogs, and seeing what progress they’ve made on their garden.  It can be so tough to find time for one’s own garden when one does gardening for a living, as they do with their Sea Star Gardening business.  They had made good progress since our last visit.

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the Sea Star abode

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A hummingbird frequents the waterfall. The water makes a glorious noise.

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on the porch (Allan’s photo)

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new shade bed in progress (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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the girls! (Allan’s photo)

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Acer griseum (paperbark maple)

The only drawback to this wonderful landscape by woods and wetlands is that the mosquitos are fierce.

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Allan’s photo, skeeters on the back of my shirt on the first walk around

When Todd arrived, Allan walked all around again.  I stayed in for that part of the tour and admired the window views.

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from the window

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from the back porch

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Todd admiring the garden in progress (Allan’s photo)

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The tour returns: Dave and Melissa

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Melissa and Todd and Allan

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Dave and Todd (Allan’s photo)

After garden touring, we repaired indoors for a delicious dinner by Chef Dave.

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Allan’s photo: salads and steelhead

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and brownies (Allan’s photo)

A friend had given Melissa, this vintage book, which brings back memories of reading ALL of Marguerite Henry as a horse crazy city girl.

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After dinner, the dogs, both Hovawarts,  joined us.

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me and Anna

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me, Coulee, Dave

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Coulee took a liking to Todd (Allan’s photo)

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Coulee (Allan’s photo)

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Coulee

The best thing in the past year has been becoming friends with these three gardeners, Melissa and Dave and Todd.

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We had been invited to dinner at Dave and Melissa’s home in Oysterville.  On the way, we took ourselves on a tour of that most wonderful Oysterville garden.

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looking in

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backlit rhododendron

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo: Elsa (?) from across the street accompanied us in.

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This bit is so perfect it always makes me weepy.

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Elsa the dog was up there checking it out.

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Allan’s photo

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the hornbeam allée

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at the end of the allée

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Allan’s photo

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tree fern and narcissi

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Allan’s photo

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Sarcococca (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

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Dave and Mel (Sea Star Gardening) and Todd (Willapa Gardening) have been weeding this garden.

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I love a nice crisp edge like this.

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perfection

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Tulip ‘Chinatown’

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front border

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tulips and tetrapanax (Allan’s photo)

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across the road: meadows and Willapa Bay

 

 

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Saturday, 16 April 2016

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My Smokey

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looking debonair in his BirdsBeSafe collar

At last, a fine day at home to weed.  I spent hours on the center back yard bed, the most boring one to weed because it is all rather samey with its river of Geranium ‘Rozanne’.

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2 PM

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7 PM

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got a bit done on this bed, too…before…

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after

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Allan made delicious tuna fish toasties for lunch.

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a spectacular parrot tulip

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more tulips that have come back for the second or third year (or, the “black” ones, maybe five years)

While I weeded, Allan did me a large favour by digging out the big, dying pink flowering currant.

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Allan’s photos: before

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during

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I thought the roots would be rotting, based on the dying of the shrub, and that it would be easy to rock the stump out.  Not so.

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Human wins!

I want an evergreen shrub in this spot to “stop the eye”at the edge of the garden.

Allan mowed Nora’s (Alicia’s) lawn.

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many dandelions poked out and then ground up with the mower

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the back meadow wildlife refuge, with mown path to the port

Sunday, 17 April 2016

While Allan went grocery shopping across the river, I tackled the east side back garden bed.

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11:20  AM

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3:30 PM

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11:20 AM

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3:30 PM

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11:20 AM

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3:30 PM

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The back side did not get weeded along the edge.  I was still well pleased.

I had to stop at 3:30 and this is why; the weather was scorching hot:

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feels like 86! So very much too hot.

I had had a very big idea and had asked Allan to look for some bamboo screening that will “stop the eye” where the flowering currant came out.

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There is a gap in my plant screening now, and I like a cave like atmosphere.

We almost started to put up the screen.  With only half an hour before a social engagement, I had a feeling we did not have time.  The next day proved me right as it was quite difficult to install.

Our evening out involved touring two favourite gardens and that will be a separate post (or maybe even two).

Monday, 18 April 2016

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in the front garden, Tulip ‘Leo’ in bloom and bud

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Tulip ‘Leo’

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Smokey loves when I stay home.

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contentment

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Calvin

My mission was to get the west side back garden bed weeded, and to do my least favourite garden project: planting new plants.

Allan rassled two of the three new fifteen foot long bamboo screens into place.  (Fortunately for me and the garden, the tide was not good for boating this weekend.)

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before

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how he attached it (Allan’s photo); it was heavy and the slats wanted to slip down.

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Allan’s photo: It wasn’t easy.  He attached it on the Nora’s (Alicia’s) side.

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Allan’s photo; I wanted it high, and also wanted to be able to weed easily underneath.

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after….ahhhh….It should last a couple of years, at least.

In the great garden design book, The Inward Garden, Julie Moir Messervy writes about how we can look back to childhood to figure out what archetype of garden appeals to most.  Some people like a promontory, with an expansive view, and tend to clip down their shrubs in a way that I find utterly shocking.  I like a cave, an enclosed and private and secret space, and it bothers me a great deal when I can see out of the sides of the garden.  I do like to keep the view open at the south end of the garden in winter, to see the port buildings, so I don’t plant anything evergreen at that end.  It’s tricky to rely on shrubs to give me the sense of enclosure that I crave, because living things die.  I recall that Ann Lovejoy said something like the best privacy hedge is…a fence!

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Allan’s photo: I got some weeding done before I had to start PLANTING.

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Having to PLANT THINGS kept me from getting this area weeded.

I did get over half of my ladies in waiting planted.  What a relief.  Roses ‘Madame Alfred Carriere’ (what a shame her own name is buried), ‘Westerland’, and ‘Jude the Obscure’, many Nicotiana langsdorfii (to have sort of a theme among the onesies), two more Ilex ‘Sky Pencil’ and a ‘Cardinal’ red twig dogwood and one of the two Stipa barbata and more…  I would rather have kept weeding, but the planting simply had to be done.

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stopped planting at 7 PM

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evening garden with moon

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a precious little iris

We were able to have a campfire for the first time this year.

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Allan’s photo

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view from the fire

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The second awesome section of bamboo that Allan had installed, and then he had mowed, too.

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pulmonaria and camassia (and weeds)

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I’d been looking forward to this dinner for a long time.

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Allan’s photo, second course

Oh how I wished for another day off to finish weeding the west bed.  Or a week off to get ALL the weeding done.  However, work calls tomorrow.

Ginger’s Garden Diaries

gdiaries

from my mother’s garden diaries of two decades ago

My mother’s birthday was April 16th.

1995 (age 71):

April 17:  Bruce still sick and I have a cold, the first one since I started getting flu shots years ago.  Rec’d Foster Farms order all in excellent condition.  Only one broken.

April 18:  Drs appt (Bruce) and glucose test (me).

1998 (age 74):

April 16:  12:30-4:30  Worked 4 hours again on the strawberries and only got 3 rows.  It seems like I’m poking the plants in fast but it takes quite a while to plant these wide rows.  Al [her brother] called tonight and we chatted quite awhile  Skyler called, too. [It was mom’s 74th birthday.]

April 17:  11:30 to 4:30  5 hours today and still not finished.  I have 10 rows done and probably can finish tomorrow.  The berry plants in the two square trays are huge.  I think they are the first ones I dug from the rows by the asparagus.

April 18:  I worked on the strawberries 2 hours and got rained in.

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Friday, 15 April 2016, part two

We took an intermission from Long Beach to do the weekly check up on the Anchorage Cottages gardens.

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The sweet peas are just barely up, and we need to build a trellis soon.

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Tulip ‘White Parrot’

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my favourite tulip, ‘Green Wave’

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Tulips ‘Virichic’ and ‘Fantasy’

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Tulip ‘Spring Green’

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center courtyard

back to Long Beach

Allan and I planted some Nicotiana langsdorfii and weeded in Fifth Street Park.

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At one point I tried to open the sliding door of that OTHER silver van.  Fortunately, it did not have an alarm.

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Fifth Street Park, mostly green so far.  The little violets that I fight with look pretty along the edge right now.

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Fifth Street Park with camassia

Allan went to the center parking lot berm to weed while I did the walkaround deadheading and weeding of the main street planters and street trees.  Join me as I walked down one side, up the other, and back again.

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the foliage of Tulip greigii ‘Fire of Love’

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T greigii ‘Fire of Love’ and T ‘Orange Princess’

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Asphodeline lutea is coming on.

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sparaxis

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a new shop: auto oriented vintage

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diascia that not only came through the winter but is blooming already

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a busy planter, with lithodora and hardy geranium going back to volunteer planter days

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Tulip ‘Strong Gold’ and Narcissus ‘Baby Moon’

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The clipping of Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ begins, which will result in smaller flowers and sturdier plants.

I was thrilled when Melissa (not our gardening Melissa), who owns Roots Juice, Salad, and Java Bar in Ilwaco, parked so that I could finally meet her pet pig, Prince Piggy.

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Prince Piggy in person

He is as friendly as the friendliest dog, uses a litter box, snuggles, and will only get to 17 pounds.  I spent the rest of the day very much infatuated and wanting a piggy of my very own.

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an unfortunate amount of Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ foliage

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Tulip ‘Rococo’

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Renee O’Connor obelisk

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Dutch iris ‘Eye of the Tiger’ in Fifth Street Park

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Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’

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Tulip ‘Madonna’ and ‘Virichic’

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Tulip ‘Antoinette’

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Tulip ‘Antionette’ and Narcissus ‘Baby Moon’

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I’m still mad that this planter by Cottage Bakery has one side totally smashed.

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Tulip ‘Green Wave’ in bud by NIVA green

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‘Greenland’ and ‘Green Wave’

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Tulip ‘Greenland’

There is a big missing piece in the planter pictured above.  Sometime in the last week, someone stole one of the two Daphne ‘Eternal Fragrance’ and smoothed over the hole.

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The planter had two daphnes, going back to volunteer days…

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and now one is gone, gone gone.

Now what to do?  Either we acquire a new daphne, which is available at The Planter Box but won’t be big like the other, OR we take out the solitary one left and replant the whole planter with something new.  I will wait till after the May 1st parade to decide, I think.  A change would allow this planter to have more summer flowers.  I am pretty sure whoever stole the daphne will find that they do not transplant well and in fact I hope it up and dies on them.

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darling Tulip batalinii ‘Bright Gem’

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Tulip ‘White Parrot’

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Tulip batalinii ‘Bright Gem’ (I think) and some unfortunate red weedy clover

As I passed NIVA green on the other side of the street, heading south again, owner/artist Heather Ramsay caught up to me and gave me a literary gift.

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Thanks, Heather and Wes!

I was also pleased when Boreas Inn Susie drove by and informed me, “You rock!”

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street tree garden (might be N. ‘Sun Disc’)

With all the planters done, I joined Allan at the center berm.

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the three parking lot berms, bottom edge of photo, with Veterans Field to the right

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Allan’s photo: It was pretty solid weeds in the berm.

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He was tired.

We had decided to not pull all the clover, etc. out, as this so called berm has so little in it that it is easier to just string trim it when the annual quaking grass is done.

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Allan had pulled out all the dandelions.

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Allan’s photo: holes where once were dandelions

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Allan’s photo: quaking oat grass and rugosa rose

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Allan’s photo: still wild, but dandelion free

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He had this far left to go, on another day.

If we had time, we would strip this out and plant something more interesting, something that could hold up to NO water all summer long.  However, the string trimmer will probably suffice for this berm.

When we dumped our debris, we got five buckets of Soil Energy from our City Works pile to add to a low planter on the Bolstad beach approach.

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before

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after, with a stolen santolina replaced

With the rest of our time, we added some plants to two of the planters on Sid Snyder Drive, the ones we had dug out and redone last fall.

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species tulips

Some passersby were entranced with the little species tulip.

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Allan’s photo

(T batalinii ‘Bright Gem’ is what I was thinking, although the other one I thought was Bright Gem has less wavy foliage so now I am feeling confused.)

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I love the way they bloom at ground level.

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo; we hope finger blighters leave this alone!

At the beginning of this long day, I had learned that Salt Hotel Pub is now open till 9PM on weekends.  That meant we would have time to go there for dinner.

Salt Pub

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Allan’s photo

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downstairs with some tulips from our garden

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upstairs view

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pleased they now have a hard cider

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Allan’s photo

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soup of the day: potato, green garlic, and bacon: delectable

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Allan’s burger

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mac and cheese and salad

We were celebrating the glorious fact that we had gotten enough work done to take a three day weekend, most of which I intended to spend weeding my own garden.

(For those of you following along on my mom’s old garden diaries, I accidentally posted her entries for April 15th on the blog for April 14th.  Oops!)

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Friday, 15 April 2016

at home

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the back garden so needs weeding

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Smokey shared my wish that I could take the day off to weed at home.

Just as I was picking a bouquet for Salt Hotel, Todd came by; a garden walkabout ensued.

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Tulip ‘Formosa’, I think.

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admiring my Salix magnifica

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Tulip ‘Leo’ in fantastic bud

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Tulip ‘Leo’ open, bottom, with Tulip acuminata

 

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Todd is 6’7″ so you can see how tall the Melianthus major is.

His visit was good timing, as an exciting box from Annie’s Annuals had arrived and I was able to give him a Stipa barbatus.

Ilwaco

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a bouquet for Salt Hotel; Todd had added the snowball virburnum

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Salt curbside garden with Narcissus ‘Baby Moon’

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ceanothus

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Time Enough Books garden boat

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garden boat (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

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Tulip batalinii ‘Bright Gem’ in the curbside garden (Allan’s photo)

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by the Port Office garden

We redid the planter by the fire station.

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revitalized planter (Allan’s photo)

We can’t put violas in the ones on First Avenue because the deer will eat them.

I contemplated the weedy fire station garden and wondered if there was any way I could find time to take it on as a volunteer garden.  After all, the local firefighters are volunteers.  I just don’t see how, though, because I don’t have time to weed my own garden.

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I do feel the urge to do something about this corner.  You can see Allan pulling some weeds at the left.

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hebe swamped with weeds

(The next day, as I weeded at home, I still could not see how I could find the time.)

The Depot Restaurant

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the weekly check up

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Tulips ‘Formosa, ‘Strong Gold’, and ‘Rococo’

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north side of dining deck

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Tulip ‘Orange Princess’

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Tulips ‘Virichic’ and ‘Formosa’

Long Beach

We had an invoice to drop at City Hall so on the way there, we added some plants to some planters on the Bolstad beach approach.

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santolinas to replace ones vandalized last summer

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a showy dandelion

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It still amazes me that people steal plants out of this planter…

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which is so obviously a memorial

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adding a plant which we hope will not be stolen.

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I’m so happy that the weeding of the beach approach is done!

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new plants to replace the old heathers removed recently

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City Hall garden

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Hellebore and Physocarpus ‘Dart’s Gold’

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north side city hall

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City Hall west side

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Allan’s photo

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Tulip ‘Flaming Spring Green’

The day was not even halfway done.  I had better divide it into two posts as there are still many more tulip photos to admire….and a pig!

 

 

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Thursday, 14 April 2016

We’ve been so focused on Long Beach that we had not done our north end jobs lately.

Red Barn Arena

I remembered that we had some edging blocks to install at the Red Barn.  When we got there, the edge had not been cleared yet (by Amy and her trusty tractor) so we will do the edging later.  We also found that the backside of the garden had been hit with roundup, always a risk when spraying grass next to a garden.

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zone of death: Round Up drift had killed the California poppies at the back…

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and caused yellowing foliage on the Helianthus

I got a promise that from now on, we will run our own string trimmer back there and that Round Up will not be applied again.

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Allan string trimming along the front

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an attractive new bench

Diane’s garden

Next door, we weeded at deadheaded at Diane and Larry’s.

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the roadside garden

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one narcissus

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the back patio planters

A heavy rain began while we were weeding along the road and got us both uncomfortably drenched and chilled.  Fortunately, I had a dry sweatshirt and jacket to change into. Allan’s jacket had kept him drier.

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brrrrr

Basket Case Greenhouse

Basket Case was a good place to warm up a bit.  We have begun planting some perennials, and needed more ingredients.  We are holding off on planting annuals till around Mother’s Day.

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the annuals greenhouse

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I got myself an Orange Rocket barberry and a Cardinal red twig dogwood.

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and the orange picotee Lewisia for my scree garden.

Golden Sands Assisted Living

I was ever so pleased to see the bright show of tulips in the Golden Sands courtyard garden.

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with blue camassia

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view from one of the red chairs

I asked Allan to apply the Sluggo to each quadrant while I sat because my knee was acting up.

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The bird bath and plaque are from my mom’s old garden.

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Tulip viridiflora (green tulips), always my favourites.  ‘Green Wave’ is on the right.

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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dog daises already (Allan’s photo)

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Pacific tree frog on moss and beach strawberries (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

While weeding, Allan commented that this little wild euphorbia reminds him of Shrek.

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a spurge, one of the cuter weeds (Allan’s photo)

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It reminds Allan of Shrek’s ears.

Klipsan Beach Cottages

After considerable weeding and narcissi deadheading, I took some photos for the KBC Facebook page of the garden looking very fine.

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from south gate

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tulips and overwintered Helichrysum ‘Limelight’

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multiflowering Tulip ‘Antoinette’

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Tulip ‘Orange Princess’

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Tulip ‘Green Star’

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This tulip has come back year after year.

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a real do-er

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fringed tulip, rose, elephant garlic

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from northeast gate

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Euphorbia characias wulfenii

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Pieris and clematis

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narcissi and pieris

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the pond island bed

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unfurling ferns

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pond island bed

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sword ferns

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The podophyllum was blooming.  (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

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beautiful Bella (Allan’s photo)

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inside the fenced garden, ocean view cottages on the ridge

Allan climbed over the pond to trim the last of the sword ferns:

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before

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after

 

Marilyn’s Garden

We had just an hour and a half to go north to Marilyn’s garden before our dinner.

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view from back porch; garage next door will disappear soonish behind foliage

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looking north

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from the road

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looking south

The Cove Restaurant

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flowers in the foyer (Allan’s photo)

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and on the table (Allan’s photo)

We had, as always, been looking forward to the weekly meeting of the North Beach Garden Gang.

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Todd brought flowers….

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Allan’s photo

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and a podophyllum for Melissa and Dave.

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Allan’s photo.  I was honestly not complaining about a thing as it had been a very good day.

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delicious ahi tuna

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strawberry salad (Allan’s photo)

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lava cake with fresh pears

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lemon bar (Allan’s photo)

Except for one little rain squall and a bit of the old knee playing up, it had been a perfect day.

Ginger’s Garden Diaries

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from my mother’s garden diaries of two decades ago

1995 (age 70):

April 15: Went through Floralight [three tiered light table] to try to find room for tomatoes.  Moved 8 or 10 trailing violets into terracotta planter and put it on top.  Planted Gloxinia bulbs into pots as houseplants.

1998 (age 73):

April 15:  Sunny, warm . I decided I  had to get the strawberries planted if I hope to have some in June.  I worked from noon to 4:00 to plant 3 rows using 6 or 7 trays of plants—and I have 29 trays of plants!  The soil is loose from the tilling so it’s easy to plant them.  I’m planting the rows close together because I have so many plants.

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