Archive for the ‘tulips’ Category

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

We had sort of a storm, with lots of wind.  The rain stopped by mid morning, leading to a dilemma.  I had wanted to finish yesterday’s long blog post; an internet glitch had resulted in all the text and photo arrangement being lost, but the photos were in the media library ready to be inserted and captioned.  And then….the power went off.

Someone unfortunate had driven into a power pole two thirds of the way up the Peninsula.  Because we are on the same grid as the hospital, we got our power back within two hours.  (As I write this in the evening, Dave and Melissa, way up in Oysterville, are still without power.)

I used our battery back up’s last bit of oomph to catch up on the Tootlepedal blog.  And then I could find no good excuse to not try to weed.


Allan’s photo: Skooter blocks the other cats from exiting the cat door

Oh, how very much I did not want to weed, because of the wind!  I told myself that if I just filled one bucket with weeds, I could come back in.


We had had this much rain overnight.


Allan string trimming

As I pulled some of the easier weeds, I observed and concluded that my earlier idea of composting in place was just not working.  We just have too many snails and slugs that like to hide in the debris and eat lily buds.


next to one debris area, a chomped lily bud


another chomped lily!

Now that I have good compost bins, I carried many armloads of debris and binned them.


gathering debris


I told Allan that I now have so much debris that I need a door for Bin B.


I found another sad columnar evergreen.  Dang blang it!

I tried to focus on weeding the center bed so that I could erase it from the work board.


It had a wealth of shotweed and horsetail.

My audience all afternoon:





Allan’s photo



Devery came over and we had a good chat.


Debris in the west bed, which I will move on my next day in my own garden, had not stopped a giant ornamental rhubarb from showing off its size.


While I love my periscaria bistorta ‘Superba’, I think it is getting too vigorous.


West bed: Persicaria is just starting to show its pale pink spikes.


tulips in the garden boat (Allan’s photo)

The  wind increased to 30 mph, making the last part of the center bed miserable to weed. Because I wanted so much to erase one thing from the work board, I thought really hard about The Deadliest Catch.


Deadliest Catch puts my job into perspective.

I had got not just one bucket but four heaping wheelbarrow loads of weeds removed.



However, I think the garden beds need a nice crisp edge.  I had noted the crisp edge on the Tootlepedal’s glorious garden during my blog reading today.  You can see the garden photos in this entry.  Part of the excellence is the trimmed hedges and Mrs. T’s plantings, but I do think the crisp lawn edge is important.


some extra lambs ear and Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ to go to Long Beach or the port


Just as I finished, really big rain drops arrived.

Meanwhile, Allan had gone to get a new sheet of plywood, and on the way he went to the library and felt compelled to deadhead at the Ilwaco Community Building.


art in the library


a stray narcissus at the Community Building


deadheading, and library books (before the rain came)


community building garden

He drove home via the high school road to see if their tulip display was on for this year.

Camera is above the window.



It is indeed on.


AND it is well protected.


I wish all OUR gardens were as well protected.



Back home, Allan lined up the old trailer side on the new cut plywood in order to drill out the holes for bungee cord lashing.


The old side became a new front for the center compost bin.


By then, I had made myself a nice cuppa Builders Tea.



in my big Don Nisbett Slow Drag mug


and a bit of a treat left over from my birthday


one “home” bed erased from the work board

I have two guest photos to share, texted to me by Melissa, of her and Dave’s garden. The container has Tulip sylvestris. 

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Tuesday, 18 April 2017

We were revived by our day off but were not ready to face the rest of the beach approach project. Today would be a day of smaller, easier jobs.

Next to the driveway as we left for work:




Narcissus ‘Chinita’

Port of Ilwaco

An event this Thursday at a port business inspired us to deadhead narcissi all along the Howerton Way gardens.  We won’t be attending but we expect it to draw a crowd.


We want to make sure the gardens look nice for this business that watches out for flower jackers. (A few weeks ago, Allan got asked from the Freedom Market’s upstairs window what he was doing digging up plants in the garden. We appreciate that vigilance.)

We worked our way from east to west.


east end, looking west


The marina is across the east end parking lot.



nautical trash



The scrimmy little horsetails are not my mission today.


CoHo Charters lavascape


deadheads by the old Portside Café (Allan’s photo)


by the Fort George Brewery office


The old Shorebank building (now empty)


kinnikinnick looking really quite nice and making one big buzzing bee happy


Wax myrtle and arbutus that got the full windstorm blast from across the Shorebank parking lot…


Another storm blasted wax myrtle

We will trim up those shrubs before the May 6th Children’s Parade and opening day of Saturday Market.  No time for that today.

Allan went on to deadhead the west end while I weeded between Shorebank and the Port Office, including the little garden on the south side of the port office building.  The tide was low…


looking west


Little brown birds scavenging the muddy rocks

Looking east, with lots of interesting driftwood

In the wheelie bin enclosure, I found a salvage piece which will be great to add to our fence.  Its little doors will provide a peekaboo effect.


This went home with us.

 Interlude at home

As we parked in front of our fence, I thought about how interested I would be to see our garden as a passerby.



I’d be looking over the fence for a better view.


I remembered a few gardens in Seattle into which I used to peer through and over fences.

The cats had something to say about how we should stay home for the rest of the day.





Skooter appears




Calvin, being not especially outdoorsy, doesn’t much care whether we stay home or not.


Calvin woken from his usual daylong nap

The garden looked extra fine and tempting.


tulips and cardoon


Japanese maple (Allan’s photo)


golden bleeding heart


Tulip ‘Green Star’


Ribes speciosum still in full flower


Ribes speciosum and tulips


patio tulips


a lavishly fringed tulip (and Frosty saying, “Do stay!”)



I have pretty good willpower about going to work (necessary for longterm self employment).  Off we went.


Allan photographed this good old dog when we stopped at the bank to put a cheque in.

The Anchorage Cottages


Beth and Mitzu (Allan’s photo)

We expected to just deadhead and weed.  However, Beth needed help with the climbing hydrangea which had fallen over in the recent big windstorm.


They got it pushed back and well tied to the new trellis.

The wind was hard on a lot of the tulips in containers, especially in the office courtyard.  They fared better in the more protected center courtyard.


center courtyard; an array of pots is just to the right


some courtyard containers


purple fringed tulips


pink fringed tulip


window boxes with tiny species flowers


narcissi and unfurling sword fern

Long Beach

Next, we picked up from the city works yard as much Soil Energy Mulch as today’s buckets would carry.


our mulch stash, with plants that were removed from a defunct planter


Our first mission was to mulch the corner bed at Veterans Field.  Some sort of Veterans walk is beginning there later this week so we want it to look fluffy.


Allan’s photos, before….


during; an annoying and constant wind made the day cold.



With that done, I went on a deadheading walkabout of the city planters and street tree gardens, while Allan went to weed and add some mulch in two areas of Fifth Street Park.


He found this big lily bulb…


a bright orange tulip


and some annoyingly persistent horsetail

My photos while walking the planters:


Tulip ‘Flaming Spring Green’



foreground: parrot Tulip ‘Rococo’ in bud


Tulip bakeri  ‘Lilac Wonder’


bench sitter

Reminder to self: Put “dig out planter ivy” on the work board so I will remember it.


horrible variegated ivy.  I blame myself from many years ago.


exciting bud on Asphodeline


orange tulips


and a painted rock placed by California poppies that might be orange later on!


pink fringed tulip, and progress on defunct planter (the lamp post has now been removed)


some big tulips, windblown, chomped by deer, broken, or picked


In the same planter, Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’ have been blooming for weeks.

Note to self: plant many more ‘Lilac Wonder’.  They are my favourite species tulip and they do so well here.


Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’

I was awfully tired for the last two blocks of deadheading and figured as soon as we got home, I would sit down.

at home

At home, I took four buckets of deadheads out to the compost bins while Allan (almost always a man of boundless evening energy) set to mowing the lawn.

The compost bins inspired some compost turning.  A day of varied jobs is much less exhausting than an all day, same place weeding project.


I had gotten all excited when seeing the bottom of bin B:


It looked like it might be siftable!

It wasn’t.  But soon will be if I keep turning frequently.


bins after today’s turning

I need more green stuff before flipping another layer.

While Allan also mowed the next door lawn for our next door neighbour, I checked the hydrangeas over at the J’s garden for signs of life.  The twigs are green when snapped but still no leaves, not even at the base.


good looking sword ferns at the J’s

Back at home, a stunning narcissus with a deep green center (and tiny spider):


I got a bit of a start when I thought each leaf of my Davidia tree had a snail in it.  No, those are flowers buds


Not like the horrible snails everywhere in my garden due to lack of time to properly police them.


Allan’s photo

Tomorrow, yet another storm is due.  I look forward to reading a book.

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Monday, 3 April 2017

We dropped some work papers off at the port and noted the intense blueness of the grape hyacinth and anemones. Photos did not capture it well. 

I resisted the temptation to weed at the Ilwaco post office.  We headed straight up north.

The Planter Box 


single and double cherry flowers in front of The Planter Box garden store

I refreshed my supply of sweet pea seeds with 2 more packs to make sure I had enough for the boatyard.  As every year, I optimistically bought some mixed greens and sugar snap pea seeds.  Why do I always think I’ll have a good kitchen garden?  It has not worked out that way since many many years ago in Seattle. In my garden there, I used to make salads from the garden.


garden dreams at the seed rack

I had more confidence in the artichoke that I bought, and another cardoon for the front garden.  It would be nice if the artichoke proved to be deer resistant.  I’m going to try it in the unfenced area by Devery’s driveway.



I was pleased to find Lamprocapnos ‘Valentine’ (bleeding heart).  I’d been wanting this one.


And I bought one of the species rather invasive ones for the bogsy woods.


Planter Box owner Teresa Millner (Allan’s photo)

Klipsan Beach Cottages

At KBC, I planted just a few sweet peas.  We weeded, did some belated rose pruning, and fertilized, with Mary’s help.


me and Mary



double hellebore and Fritillaria meleagris (Allan’s photo)


double primrose (Allan’s photo)


Erythronium (dog tooth violent) (Allan’s photo)


I found the tiniest of Pacific tree frogs.


Frog Admiration Society


Sarah (Allan’s photo)


in the fenced garden


tulips in the fenced garden (Allan’s photo)






and more narcissi


Euphorbia characias wulfenii


outside the fence: tremendously fragrant daphne


a deer in the landscape (Allan’s photo)


by the pond


sword fern

Long Beach

On the way through town going north, I had noticed two particularly dead-heady clumps of narcissi.  We stopped to deadhead them.


planter sitter damage (Allan’s photo)


It’s Spring Break (Allan’s photo)


by Stormin’ Norman’s kite and gift shop (Allan’s photo)


parrot tulip bud (Allan’s photo)


carousel and bike rack (Allan’s photo)


part of a future vintage Fun Ride (Allan’s photo)

Ilwaco boatyard garden

I planted sweet peas along the fence while Allan did some light weeding. We already need to schedule a serious all day weeding session here.  Last year, I planted sweet peas along the fence with no expectations because I had some left over.  They did surprisingly well.


weedy again; lots of poppy seeds



Allan’s photo, the north fence


big impressive Bambi (Allan’s photo)

on our block

We (Allan) needed to get two small lawns, next door and across the street from us, mowed before the rain returns tomorrow.  I figured I could get Norwood’s and J’s gardens weeded and erased from the work list.  But first…I decided that a tatty old helianthemum needed to be removed from our driveway garden.


It is weedy, grassy, and half dead.


Allan helped pull it.

But wait…just as I was thinking I’d have time to do an hour’s weeding at home AND the two little jobs, I remembered, at 4:45, that the Living Liberally meeting was tonight at 5:30 (way too early an hour for spring and summer).  The lawns had to be done.  Allan got started, while I went to weed and deadhead at the tiny Norwood garden.


Look who crossed Devery’s yard to help me.


Frosty, too, looking for the gate


Allan mows between us and Norwood’s as fast as ever he can.


I got most of the front garden weeded at J’s and Allan got the tiny pocket lawn mowed.


I have to get tough on removing the cute but invasive ranunculus.  Not tonight.

Living Liberally

We made it back to the Adrift Hotel by 6, in time for one hour of an interesting meeting.


bamboo corner at Adrift Hotel


campfire courtyard at Adrift

The [pickled fish] restaurant was simply too busy with spring breakers after the meeting.  At least coming straight home gave me time to write a blog post.

Sweet peas are off the work board.  I hope that tomorrow, the weather will permit us to finish J’s, Ilwaco planters, and the Ilwaco Community Building.



Loree of Danger Garden sent me this link about THE Oysterville garden.  It has only one garden photo (featuring the favourite spot, the south terrace) but many photos of the home’s interior.  I hope to get there to see the spring garden soon, while the narcissi and hellebores are still in bloom.

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Sunday, 2 April 2017

After breakfast, I looked out the (not entirely clean) kitchen window and thought about how much I appreciate the dogwood buds just outside.  Because I’ve been thinking a lot about the recent deaths of friends, I wondered how many more springs I will have to see this sight.  If I live as long as my mother, 23 more.  My grandma…15 more. Not guaranteed by any means. I gave the buds close attention.


We finally had some warmth and sunshine.


Allan’s photo: The wind gauge is still!


Allan hoped to get home in time to mow the lawn.

Port of Ilwaco

We finished weeding and deadheading along Howerton Avenue at the Port.


Allan’s photo: Powell and Artport Galleries curbside garden


curbside garden by Don Nisbett Gallery

I dead headed many narcissi and pulled a few weeds on the south side of the port office.


Port Office, south side


Armeria (sea thrift)




low tide




north side of port office


lots of tulips in the Time Enough Books boat


Allan’s photo: Time Enough Books garden


species tulips (probably linifolia)


more species tulips


Allan’s photo: tulip buds and muscari


westernmost Howerton Ave gardens



looking east from the west end


muscari and armeria buds (Muscari ‘Ocean Magic’, right)

I had envisioned planting sweet peas at the boatyard next, then realized that I like to use up all the leftover sweet peas there.  Until we had the seeds planted at Klipsan Beach Cottages and the Anchorage and Long Beach and home, I don’t know how many will be left.  (Sort of like not knowing how many years are left.)

Long Beach


a pause to admire tulips at the welcome sign




We went straight to city works and filled up eight buckets with Soil Energy mulch.


the dwindling pile


plus two buckets of grass clipping for my compost bins

At Fifth Street Park, we weeded and mulched and planted sweet peas.  I have had no luck with sweet peas in this park for the last few years.  I blame snails.  Yet I live in hope of having a show like the one from several years ago.

Fifth Street Park (Obelisk Park)

Fifth Street Park, one of the years when the sweet peas were glorious.


dreaming of sweet peas

I said to Allan that next time we work in LB, I want to get more mulch for this park.



no time for delicious crab rolls today


Anchorage Cottages

DSC07696 (1).jpg

our good friend Mitzu

While I planted violas in the window boxes and sweet peas against the chimney on the office courtyard, Allan weeded all round the garden.


Allan’s photo


trillium and astible (Allan’s photo)


the ever annoying glut of scilla (Allan’s photo)


Someone from Oregon had left a painted rock. (Allan’s photo)


Manager Beth had done a wonderful job installing a new trellis for the climbing hydrangea.  (Allan’s photo)


squeezed in three violas to each spring bulb window box



At the very end of weeding, I noticed that a trunk of the ceanothus by the office had died back, as that shrub is wont to do.


Allan cutting the dead trunk off


after, opened up

As we were loading up to depart, I saw two buckets of Soil Energy still in the trailer.  Due to a complete breakdown in communication, they had not got used at Fifth Street Park, so back we went to Long Beach:


Fifth Street Park with two more buckets of mulch


Next time, we will weed this edge of volunteer Bad Aster.

I had big plans as we drove home.  We still had two hours of daylight; Allan could  mow at J’s and Devery’s and I could weed at J’s and Norwood and cross them off the check up list.  And then:


dag nab it

The sun did come out again and Allan got our lawn mowed but by then my energy had disappeared so the two small jobs will have to wait till tomorrow.


work board tonight

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Thursday, 23 March 2017

I might have tried to work if the weather had been good.  I did not want to go out, feeling poorly, in rain and wind.

When the sun appeared in the mid afternoon, Allan departed for Long Beach to do some weeding and deadheading.


returning a book to the Ilwaco library (Deep Survival, I read it, did not love it)


Long Beach welcome sign


He laid out the deadheads to show me how many there were.


welcome sign


Long Beach city crew putting up banners.


deer-pulled tulips in a planter on one of the main deer intersections (where we no longer plant new tulips)


Narcissi and primrose.  It is hard to get ALL the tatty hesperantha (formerly schizostylis) foliage pulled.


crocuses chomped by deer.  Pretty sure they had flowered first.  Also on one of the main deer intersections (7th South)




deadheads. so glad Allan went to pick them


after, with grape hyacinth


Muscari (grape hyacinth) and lavender


Tulipa sylvestris, one of my favourites


snail damage


Sluggo got applied.


lilies emerging in Fifth Street Park


Muscari, one narcissi, scilla (which I did not plant…it goes back to volunteer days).


by Fifth Street Park



the rain returned


narcissi and rhododendron


more white and blue scilla (which would take over if I let it)


more banners, with Fitz and Parks Manager Mike


in a street tree garden


tulips and crocuses 



By Stormin’ Norman’s. Calocephalus brownii came through the winter.


under a street tree


Allan checked on the Veterans Field gardens:





Meanwhile, at home:


I’ve never seen Skooter and Smokey snuggle up before.  It was Smokey’s idea; he tucked himself in under Skooter’s head.

I had read about Jaywick, a semi-derelict English seaside town recently in A Kingdom By The Sea by Paul Theroux and decided to look at a video about it, which turned into watching several.  I could actually afford a bungalow there.

The longest and most official Jaywick video is here.

From that, instead of reading, I segued into the Bill Bryon Notes from a Small Island series on youtube.  I meant to watch only the first one and ended up watching all of them in my comfy chair. Partway through my watching, Allan returned with a tasty crab roll for me from Captain Bob’s Chowder.

In closing, here is a public service announcement from Steve of the Bayside garden:

There are two upcoming special events which Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden hosts — the “Early Show” and “Mother’s Day” events.    Details on one-sheet, attached.    Both have judged flower shows and plant sales.  Info on rules, etc., on both at:  http://rhodies.org/chapter/pdx_activities_detailed.htm#early a page available at www.rhodies.org, the Portland Chapter’s website.

 It could be a worthwhile day trip for Peninsula people.


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Friday, 10 March 2017


Skooter thinks the morning light is just too bright.

We had a break from the rain.  The predicted wind did not arrive, making it even better. Work ensued.


at home: Tulip kaufmanniana ‘The First’

While it looks like that tulip is growing in straw, it is actually in the old growth from Geranium ‘Rozanne’.


Allan noticed and photographed the same tulips.

We went down to the port, just a block south, to finish the garden beds along Howerton Avenue.  Of course, I had high hopes, thinking we could finish there, AND the boatyard, and maybe even prune roses in Long Beach.  Not bloody likely, as it turned out; my ambitions are usually greater than reality.


Curbside gardens run from east to west all along Howerton, on the landward side of the buildings.


Howerton and Elizabeth, looking west, before


after, 1.5 hours later


Partway through that first garden bed, three ibuprofen were required.

I’m kind of old and my arthritic legs ache like fury sometime when I am working.

Allan’s photos of the east end bed, before and after:





He also yanked a dead lavender out of the CoHo Charters garden bed because I felt it was bringing down the tone.


It was really most sincerely dead.


space for something new


Next, I made an executive decision that we simply had to get the sword and deer ferns cut back in a pocket garden in front of the former Shorebank building.  Otherwise, they will bother me all summer long…and they do show very much from the sidewalk.







A sweet 7 month old dog had jumped out a truck and came running up to me.  I held on to her till her daddy got her back.  Reminded me of my escape artist black lab, Bertie Woofter.


Oh, how she wanted to keep running.


The deer fern looked especially unsightly



20 minutes later.  I felt so much better at this being done.


Allan’s photo

We had done all the gardens in between the east and west end last week, so we skipped right ahead to the garden by Salt Hotel.  Allan did most of the clipping of santolinas in the river rock bed; I find that difficult to walk on nowadays.




half an hour later, almost after

Allan had dug out one tatty old blue fescue and, to fill the hole it left, he got a piece of Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ from the garden to the west.  Someone called out from the upstairs window of the adjacent building, which now houses the marijuana store, “Why are you taking plants?”  We were thrilled that the folks there are watching out for the garden.  Allan thanked them for their vigilance.


Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’, about to be divided


and in its new home

I had clipped all the sword ferns in the Salt’s containers along the sidewalk…because I could not stand not to do so.  The pub readerboard said “beef on weck”; I had to google it and found it was a roast beef dip sandwich.  Good thing I did not google it till I got home or I might have found a lunch break irresistible, and we still had much to do.

Next came the two beds at the west end.  These took much longer than I had expected.


before, looking west


an hour and a half later


We saw our former next door neighbour, Killer.  It had been interesting to move in and learn our neighbour was called Killer.  It means “fish killer”.


I divided and put some sedums and some golden oregano into the pot shop’s garden bed.


narcissi (Allan’s photo)


another dog on the run

In the parking lot across the street, forklifts buzzed around loading crab pots onto trucks.


Last night, when I looked out my south window, I could see the lights from the Ilwaco Pavilion building (a view that disappears when leaves come on the salmonberries and willows at the south end of our property).  This morning, the view had changed to stacks of crab pots.

We drove to the Ilwaco Community Building just to stick some starts of santolina in a sunny bed.  It is an easy plant to start right in the ground just by poking in a short hardwood cutting.


Ilwaco Community Building and its garden beds


sticking cuttings


view of shade garden from inside the building’s corridor.


crocuses at the library entrance (Allan’s photo)


Galanthus nivalis ‘Flora Pleno’ double snowdrop (Allan’s photo)


narcissi (Allan’s photo)


We ended the day down at the boatyard, which of course we did not get near to done.


The long, narrow garden runs along the fence by 1st Ave South.



boatyard, looking south, before


an hour later


Euphorbia in bloom and a disheartening number of weeds and pleasing number of poppy seedlings


so weedy

We ran into one big problem: We had created so much debris that we had to break in order to dump.  I went home at that point because it was but an hour till dark.  If I had realized that Allan had the energy to go till dark, I could have stayed at the boatyard and done more clipping while he disposed of the first load of debris.  My brain is not fully work functional yet and I did not even think of that solution, one we have used many times in the past.

I long for a good weather full work day at the boatyard.  The weeds came out like butter (smooth and easy) and it would be a pleasure to spend a day perfecting this long narrow garden.  There is still so much to do here.


boatyard garden, looking south from the gate


and looking north from the gate

The boatyard had a line of boats in every spot along the fence.



Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo


The only item of collateral damage today

The cats were happy I came home early.


Skooter and Calvin

Allan returned to the boatyard and worked till dark.





Rain and wind are again predicted for the weekend, which is just as well because we have political meetings during both days.  At this point, I am feeling behind on work and it would be frustrating to miss a good weather day with indoor events.


workboard tonight, still did not get to erase first clean up


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Tuesday, 25 October 2016

I slept in a bit because of the sound of lashing rain and vigorous wind.  By the time I was seated for breakfast, I saw sunshine and decided we should brave the wind.  I was partially influenced by getting a text from Sea Star Gardening‘s Melissa, informing me that she and Dave were two doors down hedge trimming at Mary and Jeff’s place and that they had brought me some plants acquired on a recent trip to Blooming Nursery.

This is a huge hedge trimming project.

This is a huge hedge trimming project.

My new plants: Some more 'Blauer Heinz' boxwoods and some Euonymus 'Green Spire'

My new plants: Some more ‘Blauer Heinz’ boxwoods and some Euonymus ‘Green Spire’

Another bulb order arrived before we left, including 500 crocus.  What was I thinking?  Perhaps my idea when ordering had been to plant more crocus down the center bed in the back garden.  If I pull all the dead outer foliage off of the Geranium ‘Rozanne’ river, I could plant them for early spring flowering.

river of Rozanne still blooming today

river of Rozanne still blooming today

I am loving this Helianthus 'Gold Lace'.

I am loving this Helianthus ‘Gold Lace’.

Below is my biggest gardening disappointment of the year.  I spent $70 or so on yet another attempt at growing Albizia ‘Summer Chocolate…for the third or fourth failed time.  We had one very hot 99 degree day in late summer.  The next time I watered, every leaf fell off at the same exact moment and the albizia did not leaf out again, nor do I think it will.

a very expensive apparently very dead stick

a very expensive and apparently very dead stick

I loaded a few boxes of bulbs into the van in hopes of getting through several small jobs today.

Mike’s garden

Mike got some viridiflora and ‘White Parrot’ tulips, some Allium sphaerocephalon and Allium nigrum, some crocuses (with which I am suddenly over-run) and some Iris reticulata and white narcissi.

Mike's garden

Mike’s garden is green, white, pink, and blue.

front garden with Schizostylis, either 'Viscountess Byng' or 'Miss Hegarty'

front garden with Schizostylis, either ‘Viscountess Byng’ or ‘Miss Hegarty’

Ilwaco Post Office

I contributed a selection of this year’s bulbs to add to our volunteer garden at the post office.  I didn’t put in any new tulips this year except for the exciting ‘Green Jay’, a new to me fringed green one from Brent and Becky’s Bulbs.

Tulip 'Green Jay', photo from Brent and Becky

Tulip ‘Green Jay’, photo from Brent and Becky

Ilwaco post office

Ilwaco post office with Gaura ‘Whirling Butterflies’ still blooming

schizostylis in the post office garden

schizostylis in the post office garden

World Kite Museum

The tiny pocket garden got some crocuses and some narcissi.  Browsing deer discourage the planting of tulips here.  We had a pleasant chat with gift shop manager Patti, and Allan bought a twirly thing for his garden.  I thought he took a photo of the demo twirly thing that inspired his purchase.  No.  It twirled really well and is made by a fellow who is well known for wind sculptures.

Allan's photo: bulbs ready to plant

Allan’s photo: bulbs ready to plant

I should have planted some alliums in this garden and did not think of it.  That is unfortunate as they would look so good towering above the other plants.  Maybe I will add some elephant garlic later on!

The Anchorage Cottages

Allan installed the newly planted bulb window boxes after removing the summer annuals window boxes.

A lovely, soft furred dog named Kingston was in attendance, companion to the man who is building a new cottage porch near the office.


me and my new friend, Kingston

me and my new friend, Kingston

Kingston was an absolute delight.

Kingston was an absolute delight.

window box switching (Allan's photo)

window box switching (Allan’s photo)

the old (Allan's photo)

the summer boxes  (Allan’s photo)

We could have left the annuals up for awhile longer.  Over half of them were looking tatty, and I did not want to have to go check on them after every storm.  Maybe I did the switch too soon this year.  On the other hand, I think I often have a habit of letting annuals linger too long.

with manager Beth and two great dogs

with manager Beth and two great dogs

Kingston and Mitzu

Kingston and Mitzu

A cottage guest arrived with a truck.  Allan greatly admired the step and pole that enabled one to get up into the pick up bed.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

We headed across Pioneer Road toward Diane’s garden and on the way I saw an open sign at…

The Cranberry Museum.

My dear friend Seattle Carol will be visiting soon and I needed to exchange her birthday present t shirt that had been the wrong size.  I love this little museum and want to share some of its treasures with you here.


Wooden cranberry boxes are used for shelving.

Wooden cranberry boxes are used for shelving.


You may sense a theme in the gift shop offerings.

You may sense a theme in the gift shop offerings.

bog frog cards by our friend Don Nisbett

bog frog cards by our friend Don Nisbett

looking into the area of museum displays

looking into the area of museum displays

Cranberry Museum

Cranberry Museum

We exited past the WSU Research Station cranberry bogs.

We exited past the WSU Research Station cranberry bogs.

Diane’s garden

One pot that had held a tatty old lavender got completely redone and planted with ‘White Parrot’ tulips.  Pastel tulips, iris reticulata, and crocuses went into many of the other planters..  I am counting on lots of small narcissi to return from a planting we did here last fall.

the potted garden

the potted garden

barberry with Helichrysum 'Limelight'

barberry with Helichrysum ‘Limelight’

My good friend Misty got a belly rub, of course.

My good friend Misty got a belly rub, of course.

We had dropped our trailer at The Red Barn, next door, to make it easier to fit into Diane and Larry’s driveway.

Disney, one of the Red Barn dogs.

Disney, one of the Red Barn dogs.

Next door at The Red Barn

at The Red Barn


We planted two sets of yellow tulips in the garden boat at Time Enough Books, ‘Formosa’, a late bloomer that is one of my favourites, and the elegant ‘Akebono’.

across from the carousel: windblown Tulip 'Akebono' barely holding on

across from the Long Beach carousel: windblown Tulip ‘Akebono’ barely holding on in late spring

Tulip 'Formosa'

Tulip ‘Formosa’ in Long Beach

Purly Shell Fiber Arts, Time Enough Books, and Ole' Bob's seafood market and café

Purly Shell Fiber Arts, Time Enough Books, and Ole’ Bob’s seafood market and café

I miss going to Salt Pub, but lately I just do not have any energy at the end of the day.  I hope we can go try out their new menu after Bulb Time.

We put five little crocuses, one of each colour, under each of the Ilwaco street trees and tidied up some of the planters a bit.  The wind gusts that had been up to 30 mph had died down and we had a much pleasanter time planting.  In fact, I don’t think I would have tackled this otherwise because First Avenue is a wind corridor on a bad day.

Allan's photos: a planter, before

Allan’s photos: a planter, before

and after. The Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve' will need replacing in spring.

and after. The weather battered Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ will need replacing in spring.

the last five street tree crocus going in

the last five street tree crocus going in

At home, Frosty and I examined Allan’s handiwork on the temporary structure for the Corridor of Spooky Plants which must be installed before Halloween.



I have started collecting plant material. With more wind forecast for the next two days, I daren’t install it yet.  And also, I need access to the garden to finish planting my bulbs.

The work board tonight shows that Bulb Time has never gone so quickly.


One reason for the speed is getting the bulbs before Daylight Saving Time begins, enabling us to work longer hours before dark (since we never get started early).

We need good weather without big wind to plant at the port and the Bolstad beach approach gardens.  Maybe that means that tomorrow will finally be my day to do the bulb spreadsheets.


1995 (age 71):

Oct 25:  11:30-5:30!  Finished strawberry rows.  Mulched them with straw.  Planted my 15 mums in the corn patch.







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Sunday, 23 October 2016

The typing out of the bulb lists was not to be today.  We woke to fine autumn sunshine and decided to get as far as possible in the bulb planting of the Long Beach planters and street tree gardens.

Bulb time has started much sooner than usual this year.  For the past several years, my bulbs arrived in early November, and not early enough.  This year I called and requested earlier shipment because of my planned knee surgery.  The knee surgery is not happening this autumn after all because of economic reasons, and the payoff might be an earlier staycation than usual.

Today, we worked our way through the Long Beach blocks out of order, based on where we could find parking on a busy Sunday.

bulbs laid out in the recently redone planter in front of Stormin' Norman's gift shop.

bulbs laid out in the recently redone planter in front of Stormin’ Norman’s gift shop.



Geranium 'Rozanne' halfway cut back and still blooming in front of the police station

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ halfway cut back and still blooming in front of the police station

Hydrangeas in Third Street Park with fresh blooms on top of old ones.

Hydrangeas in Third Street Park with fresh blooms on top of old ones.

I had a catastrophe at the police station intersection.  I have bulbs for each planter sorted into a separate bag or sometimes a bag for an entire intersection.  I noticed when planting the police station intersection (Third Street) that all of the tulips were viridiflora (green) tulips.  I always use green tulips for the NIVA green block, but since they are my favourite tulips, I did not wonder that I had them for the Third Street block also.  That is, until I got to NIVA green and saw the “POLICE” bag was still in the van.  I had grabbed the NIVA bag by mistake.  Fortunately, I still had one set of green tulips for the NIVA planter itself.  The other three on that block went purple and pink this year.  Dang it all.

squeezing bulbs into a busy planter by NIVA green

squeezing bulbs into a busy planter by NIVA green

Each planter is a little different, and many that we have not redone still have rampant plants going back to the days when each one was done by a different volunteer.  We don’t redo all of them, just the ones with extremely annoying plants like a nest of vinca or a thuggish hardy geranium. (In the recent case of the wire vine in front of Stormin’ Norman’s, I had only myself to blame.)  Three planters have would-be huge escallonias that I cannot remove because their roots are all into the “works” of the plumbing, so I am stuck with constant pruning. Some have would be full size barberries that need constant attention, all leftovers from volunteer days.  Each planter started with a dwarf rhododendron (on the street side of the lamp post.  One of two that remain can be seen in the photo above) and two big heathers on either side of the lamp post, provided by the city.  ALL the heathers are gone now.  Oh my, they were boring, and filled up way too much space with flat dullness.  The volunteers themselves eliminated most of the heathers.

I was tremendously annoyed today to find that someone who is hanging out by the NIVA green planter on a regular basis is filling it with cigarette butts even though there is an ashtray receptacle RIGHT NEXT TO THE PLANTER.

truly disgusting

truly disgusting

planting after picking out all the butts

planting after picking out all the butts

I popped briefly into NIVA green to get some Halloween display photos for the shops Facebook page (which I help manage).

in NIVA green

in NIVA green


Fuchsias still blooming in the planter at the south end of Dennis Co (and the flowers across the street are long lasting chrysanthemums).

Fuchsias still blooming in the planter at the south end of Dennis Co (and the flowers across the street are long lasting chrysanthemums).

My good friend Tam O’Shanter came to the door of the Herb N’ Legend Smoke Shop.


Tam (Allan’s photo)


planting at the smoke shop, with more late blooming Geranium 'Rozanne'

planting at the smoke shop, with more late blooming Geranium ‘Rozanne’

Allan planted from the street side of this planter by Sweet Phee's pizza place.

Allan planted from the street side of this planter by Sweet Phee’s pizza place.

To my amazement, we did get all the planters and street tree bulbs installed, except for the four plants (Bolstad stoplight down to the police station) which might get dug up because of a problem with that electric line.  I am holding  tulips for those planters.

I was glad that I had also brought the box for Veterans Field even though I had been almost sure we would not get to it.

Vet Field corner garden before adding bulbs (of blue, white, and red flowers of course).

Vet Field corner garden before adding bulbs (of blue, white, and red flowers of course).

and after

and after

By the time we finished this little project, we were in a drizzle, and by the time we had finished dumping our trailer load of debris at City Works, a lashing rain had begun.

perfect timing for rain

perfect timing for rain


The work board is shorter, at least until I think of more projects.

The work board is shorter, at least until I think of more projects.

Skooter and Azara microphylla 'Variegata'

Skooter and Azara microphylla ‘Variegata’

Halloween lights

Halloween spider lights

a pleasing perennial chrysanthemum in the garden (from The Planter Box nursery)

a pleasing perennial chrysanthemum in the garden (from The Planter Box nursery)

late blooming cosmos

late blooming cosmos

Tomorrow it will surely rain and give me time to type up the bulbs spreadsheets.


1998 (age 74):

Oct 23:  12:00-5:00  I worked in Tam area again planted tulips and narcissus.  Also cleaned up the area by pruning and weeding.  It was a lot cooler than yesterday.  I called the WSU [Washington State University] extension office for up to date instructions on canning tomatoes, freezing, and drying.


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Monday, 17 October 2016

Long Beach

Another inaccurate weather forecast had called for a day of 30 mph wind and a half an inch of rain.  Instead, we got a glorious warm day and were able to do post-storm clean up of the Long Beach planters.  I had been looking forward to that.  Even though the storm had not brought the predicted 90 mph, over 50 mph wind in Long Beach had made the planters look rather battered.

After dropping books off at the Ilwaco library and adding some Geranium sanguineum starts to that garden, we began clean up at the Long Beach welcome sign.





both sides. The geraniums 'Rozanne' and 'Orion' on the back side were still blooming.

both sides. The geraniums ‘Rozanne’ and ‘Orion’ on the back side were still blooming.

We hoped to have time to return to the sign later in the day.

In town, we tidied up the beat up plants.

 Geranium 'Rozanne' about to be cut back

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ about to be cut back (Allan’s photo)

further tidying

after, further tidying

It was so hot that for awhile I thought I had a flu-ish fever.  (Ok, it was 61 degrees.)

Todd stopped by with some bulbs from a shared order Brent and Becky’s.

I'm showing him a santolina that died.

I’m showing him a santolina that died.

The smoke shop owner told me that the sign she had made to protect the flowers has been stolen…before the wind storm.


If you see this stolen sign (how ironic), it belongs to the Herb ‘N Legend Smoke Shop.

Allan trimmed this lavender.

Allan trimmed this lavender.

We had made the right decision last week to leave the blooming, top heavy ‘Super Dorothy’ roses in Fifth Street Park.  The wind was not enough to topple the fence or to remove the flowers.

Super Dorothy Rose (an improved Dorothy Perkins, from Heirloom Roses) Allan's photo

Super Dorothy Rose (an improved Dorothy Perkins, from Heirloom Roses) Allan’s photo

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo.  I am so glad we did not cut these.

This catmint is about to be cut to the base.

This catmint is about to be cut to the base.

after, with lots of California poppies pulled from the kitty corner planter

after, with lots of California poppies pulled from the kitty corner planter

This is far from the final clean up.  Another go round will be on bulb planting day and then a last go round will come after a hard frost.  I trimmed the green santolinas after Allan took the photo above.

excellent chrysanthemum, several years old (Allan's photo)

excellent chrysanthemum, several years old (Allan’s photo)

from the other side (Allan's photo)

from the other side (Allan’s photo)

We did have time to get back to the welcome sign.  After dumping our debris at the city works yard, we scraped up the last of the old, tarped, soggy pile of Soil Energy mulch into five buckets.  Now we are officially out of mulch.

parking lot gardens fall colour

parking lot gardens fall colour, euonymous (burning bush)



At the sign, we planted 200 tulips bulbs, red and yellow for the front of the sign, and purple and pastels for the sunset colors of the back of the sign.

the sprinkling of bulbs food

the sprinkling of bulb food

My favourite garden guru Ann Lovejoy has written that bulbs come with all the food inside of them that they need for the first year.  Here, the bulb food will nurture older bulbs, like the grape hyacinths already coming up along the front.


This year we planted the tulips more toward the front edges in hopes any tall narcissi will bloom behind them.  Last spring we tried to shift the tall narcissi to the back.  I know we missed some.

a nice ledge to sit on while planting

a nice ledge to sit on while planting



after. I hope the city crew has time to get us another yard of mulch.

after. I hope the city crew has time to get us another yard of mulch.

At home, I sorted the packages of Todd bulbs into the appropriate areas of Bulb Central.  I am now awaiting the arrival of another batch via UPS and then bulb time will resume.

I planted the questionable Costco bulbs, the ones I had not unpacked soon enough.  The totally soft ones went into the debris pile.  I hope the just slightly soft ones might still have some life in them.


1998 (age 74):

Oct 17: I peeled apples and tomatoes from about 11:00 to 6:00.  That’s a lot of time to get 5 pts applesauce and 2 pts tomatoes.  (It would have been 6 pts applesauce but I ate the other one.  Delicious even without sugar.)

Next week:

  • Plant hydrangeas in bulkhead
  • Plant primroses in tam area
  • Plant all the perennials from behind house
  • Throw out the annuals
  • Pick up apples daily




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Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Our mission today was to get three jobs done so that we could spend the rest of the week concentrating on Long Beach and Ilwaco.  This weekend will be the annual parades in each town.



at home: Tulip ‘Formosa’ proves again to be one of the latest of all.


at home, tulips and Allium bulgaricum


at home: Anthriscus ‘Ravenswing’ is threading its airy white flowers through the Melianthus major.


Ilwaco post office garden, lots of green waiting for flowers.


Post Office: Allan calls this “Dog Poop Corner’ because there is often a dog poop deposited there and not cleaned up.

Anchorage Cottages


Mitzu greets us (Allan’s photo)

We got the two remaining window boxes ready for them to put in place when the brackets are done (tomorrow).


flowers will be mostly orangey to go with the sign


honeysuckle, center courtyard


working on center courtyard (Allan’s photo)


Allan did lots of weeding and bluebell-pulling in the center courtyard garden.


Allan’s photo

Manager Beth told us that not all the cottages came from Fort Canby, as we mentioned the other day.  A couple of them came from the nearby golf course and a couple of them were built on the property.



Tulip ‘Greenland’


Tulip ‘Green Wave’, my weird and wonderful alltime favourite


Green Wave


our good friend Mitzu


Mitzu could go to a Prince memorial dance party in her purple coat.

I would go to a Prince memorial dance party if there was one nearby.


Last week’s window boxes installed with new brackets.  More annuals to come with warmer weather.

I had to change into warmer clothes at the Anchorage because of a brisk and chilly wind.


The rhodos are getting tall enough to provide some privacy again.


Three yellow rhodos in a courtyard that is difficult to make look good.

I am so not a fan of bark, at all….”Just say no to barkscapes” is our motto (one of them).  However, maybe some very fine very DARK bark (shredded, not horrid nuggets) would look better around those shrubs, although I would prefer a soil based mulch.


callas and climbing hydrangea

Golden Sands Assisted Living


Allan’s photo


from the hallway to the courtyard (Allan’s photo)

At last, I got the bag of dahlias planted, an assorted mix of pinks and maroons.  Each quadrant got some weeding.  There never seems to be time to achieve perfection.  The four flower gardens are in a green stage between spring bulbs and late spring flowers.  Quite dull:


Future mission: beat back the horrible salal that is jumping into the garden.

I would love to see salal completely out of this whole courtyard….I hope we can remove some every week between now and fall.  By we, I mean Allan.


a bit of colour with daylilies and mom’s Joseph’s Coat rose.

One of the residents told us that a new resident has enjoyed the tulips and been reminded of the tulips she had at her own home.

Klipsan Beach Cottages


driveway to “Joanie’s Cottage” next door, where we park when we work at KBC (Allan’s photo)


looking south from the driveway (Allan’s photo)


Allan’s photo

He pruned a sword fern that we had missed on the outer lawn:




after (much easier to clip when dormant!)


from our parking spot, we can see Rhododendron ‘Cynthia’ aglow.


Rhododendron ‘Cynthia’




Tulip ‘Marilyn’


Allan’s photo

We missed the elegant shape of that tulip before it opens, as shown below:



My favourite crazy Tulip ‘Green Wave’


Tulip ‘Spring Green’


I cannot remember what this blue flower is!


Tulip ‘Formosa’


Allan’s photo

When good plants go bad:  After years of being well behaved, Allium sphaerocephalon has turned into a grassy looking mess, just like another grassy allium in Fifth Street Park.


very annoying and messy


sword and deer ferns


sword fern and weigela


Camassia cusickii


looking into the fenced garden



looking south from the bench nook 


At the A frame garden, Allan tucked in a teucrium that I’d taken out of a pot at the Anchorage (in prep for something more interesting).


tucked in between tree roots


deadheaded narcissi at the A Frame


Allan produced lots of deadheads.


Hydrangea ‘Lemon Wave’ (probably) Allan’s photo


unfurling fern by the clam shed (Allan’s photo)

Ilwaco again

I had clipped back a rosemary at Golden Sands that had been mysteriously bent sideways.  (One of the residents agreed it was like a bear had lain on it, but no bears can get into the courtyard.)  We delivered the clippings to Salt Pub.


an armload of rosemary and “Don’t take my picture!” as I was feeling decrepit.

The curbside gardens need weeding before the weekend…at least, the ones that are not all river rock, because at this point I cannot even walk on river rock, much less stand on it to weed it.  Today I had some plants with me to add to the Ilwaco planters.  I was just too tired to do it.

When we arrived home, Dave and Melissa were about to leave their big pruning job two doors down.


We admired the spiffing job.  If you cut this too hard, it will not grow back from the brown centers.  (Allan’s photo)


Melissa pointed out two deer dossed down in Nora’s back meadow.

I told Nora’s grand daughter (now owner of the house) that it is good to have a wildlife refuge with mown paths back there.


Allan’s photo…and our deer fence

On the other side of the yard, a darling waggle tailed dog watched us.  Allan could read his name tag: Dickens.


Allan’s photo


We were smitten.


the hedge yesterday


today, a job well done.  (The brown cut on the end was already that way…had to be because of the gate.)

Now we have three days to get Ilwaco, the Port of Ilwaco, and Long Beach parks and gardens as perfect as possible before parade weekend.


1995 (age 71):

April 26:  Finished planting begonias in baskets and pots.  Was able to get them all in by moving Forest Farm plants outside.  Next big job is planting the dahlias.

1997 (age 73)

April 26:  11:00-4:00  warm and sunny  Planted the Tristar daughter plans in 3 rows except the small ones which I put into square tray.  That job took until 5:00.  Turned on garden faucets.  Watered strawberry rows.  Then started weeding the pathway until I quit when I was exhausted.

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