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Archive for the ‘public gardens’ Category

Saturday, 7 September 2019

Castle Rock Nursery

331 Buland Dr
Castle Rock, Washington
(360) 274-8388

Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

I did not want to be greedy when offered free annuals.  I would take them all for compost!  So I only took a few geraniums and begonias that I might be able to winter over.

Allan bought a fern.

Allan’s photo

The Book of Lists is an excellent book of plants that thrive in various conditions, and other such things.  It, and another book called Plants for Problem Places, were invaluable to me before the World Wide Web. I was pleased to see a book like that still in use.

Allan’s photo

Again I wished I still had my grandma’s old sewing machine (at least the stand).  I actually did used to sew on the old treadle machine, back when I sort of knew how to sew simple things, and it was the only one I had.

I saw a gorgeous tall Panicum and asked what it was.  Our garden host did not know.  When I saw three pots of Panicum ‘Heavy Metal’ and its base, I was astonished.  Could the little knee high Heavy Metal Panicums under a tree in Long Beach get that tall if they had good water?

the three pots of Heavy Metal and the big specimen

But then the daughter and plant expert returned from lunch and said the tall one was Panicum ‘Dallas Blues’.  There were two gallon pots of it left and I snagged them both.

Panicum ‘Dallas Blues’

Any other admirers would be out of luck because of my buying the last ones.

I did later google ‘Heavy Metal’ and learned that it could get to four to five feet in better conditions.

I also bought some small gauras because I want them at the Ilwaco Fire Station. Someone at the nursery told me, and I later confirmed, that gaura is the official flower of Castle Rock.  Could be true of Long Beach and Ilwaco, also, as I sure do use a lot of them.

Here is where you pay.
Allan’s photo

That was such a pleasant shopping experience.  I hope to visit again next year, when perhaps the Bloomin’ Tour will be in early August rather than early September.  May would be even better…if it were less than a two hour drive from home.  I imagine that it is the shopping hub for gardeners of the Castle Rock area.

Next: a deliriously delightful display of dahlias.

 

 

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Thursday, 8 August 2019

Maybe because we had Tuesday off, I did not feel as desperate to get done with today and get on to our weekend.  All went smoothly from start to finish.

Depot Restaurant

We gave the whole garden a good watering to supplement the sprinklers.

I had a brainstorm that we could mark the two areas that need sprinkler heads with bamboo and string.  Will do that next week.

Lonicera ‘Baggeson’s Gold, Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’, Geranium ‘Rozanne’, Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’, Nasturtium ‘Moonlight’
SE corner of dining deck

inside the dining deck

Summer privacy has been achieved with the big ornamental grasses except for one spot where diners would be able to see cars in the parking lot:

The hops leaves in deep dining deck shade did not get sooty mold this year (so far):

Long Beach

We deadheaded and weeded the welcome sign.  It has soaker hoses so no watering necessary.

We separated downtown and each watered half of the planters and the six stand alone bucket-watered pots.

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ and Oregano ‘Hopley’s Purple’
cute auto paint job

Last year I said I was going to remove this big, woody old Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ after Rod Run (the last big tourist weekend of the season—just four more weeks to go till the season is over!).  This year I really, really mean it.

I reminisced to myself about the beginning of the volunteer planter program, over 20 years ago.

On the recommendation of Ed Hume, who had a beach house here at the time, each planter got a dwarf blue rhododendron planted on the outside of the light post. Only three of the little rhodies survived and can still be seen in the wind-protected planters by the Elks, Scoopers, and Carnival Gifts.

Each planter had a great big heather planted on either side of the lamp post.  I was horrified (having decided to adopt four planters) because they were short, in the middle, took up a lot of room, bloomed only in winter, and were SO boring.  Fortunately, all the heathers died within a couple of years, or volunteers yanked them out.

All of the planters were downtown then, with none on the beach approaches.  The city decided to plant street trees in place of every other planter because people complained that all the lamp posts made the town look like a runway, so about twenty planters got moved to the approaches. I remember moving some of the heathers to the new beach approach garden, where only one survived.

At the stoplight, World’s End Pub has opened.

I saw this in a shop window and wanted it ever so much, but the shop was closed.  I went back the following Monday and the magnet was gone.

Because I had not seen the film, I thought the cat was, well, just any cat, and that the magnet meant that an orange cat (like our Skooter) was a marvel.  Allan had not seen this magnet.  When he went to the library on Saturday, he happened to pick up the Captain Marvel movie from the “You Got Lucky” shelf of popular films (instead of being number 200 on the hold list).  NOW I understand what the photo means.  I wonder if Marvel fans are naming their orange cats Goose…or Flerken.  (The movie was quite enjoyable, especially Goose.)

The next photo shows the difference in size between the flowers of Cosmos ‘Sonata’ and Cosmos ‘Xanthos’ (smaller and pale yellow).

ratibidia (Allan’s photo)
Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo. glads left over from volunteer days

We found a change in the police station rugosa rose garden.

That must have been painful to install.

Allan checked on our new plants at Fifth Street Park.

much better!

After the downtown planters, we watered the Sid Snyder beach approach planters. Trail ride horses were just heading out for the beach.

gazania in westernmost Sid Snyder planter (Allan’s photos)

We had time to check on the kite museum garden.  It’s not bad but having the museum closed on Wednesday and Thursday seems disappointing to tourists and difficult for the plants, which have to go two days without being watered (not our job!).

Salvia ‘Hot Lips’ and ornamental oregano
The fabulous and tender oregano came through the winter!

Ilwaco

I hose watered and weeded at the boatyard while Allan bucket watered the street trees and planters.  (His day was therefore harder than mine.)

The euphorbia that fasciated last year looks like it is doing it again, even though I finally cut off last year’s cool stalk and took it home.

Last year, end of summer:

Today:

While watering inside the fence, I saw a pulled up and clipped elephant garlic.

Last time that happened, some garden fans drove by and stopped to compliment the garden, so I gave them the cloves and blossom of a vandalized plant.  They happened by again tonight, and showed me that they still have the garlic flower in their vehicle, so I gave them tonight’s vandalized bulbs.  Made me feel good about it.

Deer had not read the do not pick (or eat?) sign.

Some of the lilies had escaped being nibbled.

I love the paint job on the little boat:

Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo

The Ko Ko is back in the boatyard after an unpleasant mishap.  See this brilliant time lapse video by Aaron Webster.

In nature news, I learned on BBC’s Springwatch how the lack of long grass meadows is contributing to insect decline.  I am sure many people my age remember how a car windshield would be smeared with bugs after a drive in the country in the 60s.  Does that happen to your windshield now? I think not. But even if the windshield phenomenon is still speculative, when you see a meadow like this, let go to long grass…

…please do not agitate for it to be mowed and made tidy.

Allan’s photos while watering:

Look up above the light.

mysterious sunflowers in a planter

We finished our work day by watering our volunteer gardens at the post office and fire station….

…and were home by 7 PM to begin a three day weekend.

Just before bedtime, I had Frosty on my lap, with Jazmine on a chair and Skooter on the table and no growling or hissing.

Let peace reign.

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Wednesday, 1 May 2019

Before work, Allan checked on the J’s new rose.

Calendula reflected in our van window:

Port of Ilwaco

Today’s mission: To weed all the rest of the gardens we care for along the Port.  (There is one that we skip, that is all escallonias with horrible landscape fabric showing all around them.  One of these days when I have time, I will cut the landscape fabric out of there and then will start to weed around the escallonias.  At the moment—no time for that.)

I still could not step up and down off the curb without yowling in pain from my calf.  However, I had remembered the compression stockings that I wore last time I had this injury.  They did help keep my muscle, tendon, or whatever the heck is hurting me from jumping around so much (even though they are a bugger to put on).

Fortunately, there is plenty of weeding to do all around the edges of the curbside beds, or I could take one step up and just stay in the middle and weed the length of a bed.  Allan has to do the four sections covered with large river rock (dating from before our time).  I simply cannot walk on that without knee pain. I wonder if anyone who landscapes a whole bed with river rock ever thinks ahead to how hard it will be to weed.  The one with landscape fabric underneath is the worst, of course.

We watered the At the Helm Hotel curbside where I had planted seeds recently and, because of the dry and windy weather, we also watered six of the other beds.  At this time of year, we do not have time to start up the whole watering regimen and we are not best pleased at the extreme dry weather with no rain in the forecast.  It is worrisome, with the longterm forecast of a dry summer.

Without any more whinging (or just a bit), here are today’s photos.

I kept planting seeds, even though with no rain, I have little confidence in the results.

We cannot water every day!

We can only hope.
Allan’s photo
Allan’s photo
helianthemum
Eschscholzia californica
proof that the California poppies have not all reverted to orange
the drive-over garden
Allan’s photo
some rocks I cannot walk on

Santolina ‘Lemon Fizz’ reverting to green

Allan’s photo
Armeria (sea thrift) Allan’s photo
Irony (Allan’s photo)
Allan’s photo
joy

Allan’s photo
Tulip linifolia
at Time Enough Books

Here is better photo recently taken by Purly Shell.

photo courtesy Purly Shell Fiber Arts
by Time Enough Books (Allan’s photo)

I got Allan to pull out some tired old elagrostis (weeping love grass).

ceanothus
a helper at Salt Hotel

For some reason, it has fallen on Allan to strim the edge of the sidewalk by the Freedom Market.

before
after
west end, looking east
Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo, the little funny hat of a California poppy seed pod, already

 

the west end

By now, we had weeded and sometimes watered from the Pavilion to the west end.  We were utterly exhausted and yet simply had to go back to weed the long bed at the east end and the lava rock bed by CoHo Charters.

finishing at 7 PM

Even though I had planned to do all Long Beach on Thursday and Friday, we still had not made it to the Ilwaco fire station or one of the curbside gardens that we had hoped to do today.

 

 

 

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Friday, 15 March 2019

Before work, I had an exciting delivery from Gossler Farms, a Stachyurus praecox.  I have been looking for this plant since I left my old garden and had to leave a large one behind.  (It probably got crushed when the new owner had some danger trees felled from the slope above it.)  It is a winter blooming shrub that I adore.

Allan’s photos

It is gorgeous.  Now I just have to figure out how to squeeze it in to a garden bed that I can see from my living room desk in early spring.

I dug up several clumps of Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ and one clump each of a couple of more special sedums (“Strawberries and Cream’ and one with more glaucous foliage whose name I forget) to plant as the new center plant in the

Ilwaco planters.

Allan took most of the photos for this first part of the day.

in the boatyard

My hope is to make the small round easily-baked-in-the-sun planters need watering only once a week…or even just once every five days, or even four, would be an improvement.  We had removed the winter battered Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ which have been the centerpieces for years.

loads of snails in a planter near the boatyard

under a street tree

I admired both the south facing window and the garden bed below it at the Col Pacific Motel.

One of three erysimums that we had left because they looked ok looked so bad close up that I was sorry I had left it.

A variegated sedum had been taken over by a green reversion.  I axed all the green parts off and I do hope it will stay the handsome variegated form.

Just look how much it had reverted!  I had all but forgotten that it was anything but the plain green form.

The offending green parts in a bucket will be welcome elsewhere.

Long Beach

We began with a quick check up and some tidying at the city hall garden….

a corner at city hall before…

and after

The old lavatera in the west side garden beds that were planted by Gene and Peggy Miles has become so worn that this is probably its last year.  I will need to plant something low there because the office staff likes to be able to see out the window.

And then we trimmed santolinas and did some other grooming on the planters on the Sid Snyder approach and the six downtown blocks.

Sid Snyder Drive

The trimming will inspire the santolinas to have a nice round shape instead of getting raggedy.

before…this one took a lot of hand trimming rather than the speedy Stihl trimmer….

…because it was so intertwined with narcissi.

Allan took on the truly horrid job of clipping the rugosa roses that volunteered itself under one of the trees and then weeding it for the first time this year.

before

after

I walked back and forth between planters and street trees, heading north and trimming santolinas as I went.

This is the planter that started it all, one of four that I did back in about 1998 when they were all done by different volunteers.  The city administrator at the time said it was “magnificent”.  It still has the original santolinas.

before

A few years ago, I got so bored while hand trimming the furthest one that I suddenly cut it back to the trunk! It took it two years to come back.  I am glad I have The Toy now which makes the job fun rather than high pressure and tedious.

after (I blocked part of the photo with my thumb, oops)

Allan caught up to me halfway through town and removed the protective old leaves from the Fifth Street Park gunnera…

…and then trimmed a couple of blocks of planters himself.

The carousel is back, a sure sign of the tourist season.

I love small cupped narcissi.

I realized I would not have the satisfaction of erasing santolinas from the work board because we still have the ten or so planters on Bolstad beach approach to trim.  At five o clock, I was too exhausted to do it even though in past years I’d have gone on till dark to get it done.  I blamed the after effects of the Shingrix vaccine (whose side effects can last 3-5 days) rather than aging.

I did not even think I could muster the energy for the last two untrimmed planters north of the stoplight that I saw when we were on our way to dump debris. But I did (which means Allan did, too) because those blocks would be more crowded on a Saturday.

one of the last two planters

The downtown santolina trimming used to take all day, with sore hands from clipping afterwards.  The Toy made it take just the afternoon.

The work board tonight:

 

 

 

 

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Monday, 18 February 2019

Long Beach

We would have started at the Heron Pond had there been a parking place.  Instead, we began with the City Hall gardens.

I was so pleased with how the Stihl trimmer (The Toy) worked on the ornamental grasses on the west side that this is the only photo I took there.

I did not ask my phone to make its photo all artsy black and white.

Allan did better with before and after photos on the east side of city hall.

before
after

I channeled Gardeners’ World’s Carol Klein by putting some cuttings of Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ into a plastic baggie to keep them fresh till I can pot them up.  I had forgotten to bring a baggie but had fortuitously found one in the gutter (lord knows what was once in it).

Before we had quite finished cleaning up, Allan espied a parking space by the pond, a block away, and hightailed the van over there to snag it, then came back for the wheelbarrow and tools.

While he tidied and weeded and clipped around the pond, I did the same for the north two blocks worth of planters, therefore missing the traditional photo of Allan crossing the little waterfall without falling in.

His work location could have been viewed on the Heron Cam, shown here the following afternoon…

…so someone would surely see if he lost his balance.

My planter photos:

Erysiumum ‘Bowles Mauve’

The Toy works wonderfully at trimming small stems in the planters, and I believe it has already saved me hours of clipping.

Before:

a messy golden oregano

after (with hand clipping around the bulb foliage):

I helped Allan finish the last bit of work around the pond.

our audience

Allan’s Heron Pond photos:

before
after
before
after

before
after

Note how the underwear shows on the way across to the waterfall (and around the edges). I want to avoid this with our pond.

Next came Veterans Field and the Police Station rugosa roses, with only an hour clipping before time to clean up and dump debris.

Neither area allowed for use of The Toy; both required big loppers and the cutting of individual stems.

Police station (Allan’s photos):

before
after

Veterans Field flag pavilion, before…

Gaura ‘Whirling Butterflies” has very tough stems.

The great big mess (Allan’s photo) had me fearing we would not get done by dark.

We prevailed. (I left the Salvia ‘Hot Lips’ unclipped because we are still due for some cold nights.)

Way over by that white car, below, is the little corner garden.

Because I did not get that far, I cannot erase Vet Field from the work list.  We did make an excellent dent today and also scored a gorgeous bookshelf from a “free” pile on our way home.

This morning:

This evening:

None of these work accomplishments are refined and perfect weeding jobs, just the somewhat rough first clean up.

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

I spent the next day in the greenhouse at home, avoiding the rain by potting up some plants for my sale and rearranging my room to accommodate the new book shelf.  This meant that I actually emptied out my ancient and ugly filing cabinet, the one full of old letters from friends and of sorted articles (on non-gardening topics) that I have been collecting since the 70s.  Putting the files into two cardboard boxes does not mean that I can erase “filing cabinet” from my at home list.

I have a plan for the old filing cabinet.  More on this later.

Allan’s outing included taking some of his boating book to Time Enough Books (where it had sold out!) and a quick tidy of the post office garden.

Ilwaco Post Office, before
after

I even booted up my computer to write this post instead of writing from the depths of my comfy chair.  With rain due tomorrow as well, there may be a blog break.  I feel more comfortable and less pressured when the blog is running at least three days behind.

 

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Wednesday, 5 December 2018

With some colder weather in store, Allan had tried adding some plastic to the sides of the greenhouse lean to:

Allan’s photo

We found out this morning that it was so flappy and noisy in the wind that I worried it would keep our neighbours to the east awake.  Adding weights to the bottom did not help, so down it came.  The lean-to is useful enough without doors as it should keep frost off of tender plants.  Allan may add something stronger, but removable, for the coldest nights, once it gets figured out…

I began a project of cutting back honeysuckle and hops, all tangled with a lot of dead in it, on the arbors to the east of the compost bins.

before

I was quite enjoying the task when I happened to look at my pineapple sage and realized that the cold had surely damaged plants in the less sheltered Long Beach gardens.

pineapple sage

and Nicotiana ‘Fragrant Cloud’

So halfway into the afternoon, we had to switch gears and go to work.

We pulled the last of the Ilwaco cosmos…

….at the boatyard garden…

….and the Ilwaco pavilion garden.

We checked on the window boxes and barrels at the Depot Restaurant in Seaview and found that the annuals were still not ready to pull, even though I wish they were.

Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’ still has some yellow daisies….

and the window boxes still have some flowers.

In Long Beach, we cut down chrysanthemums and Salvia leucantha in several planters.  The city crew has had to dig in one of them, probably for electrical Christmas lights reasons.

Oh, dear.

I visited NIVA green for a bit of Christmas shopping.

beautiful new velvet bags, too soft for my lifestyle

There is one photo I cannot show because a Christmas present is front and center.

I was able to tell Heather in person that I was going to remove myself as co-administrator of the NIVA green Facebook page, because her assistant, Wes, is now doing such a great job with it.  It is much better for someone who is on the spot to do it, and my grandmother told me many times that too many cooks spoil the broth.  I have another place to share my photos: the “favourite shops” album on my own Our Long Beach Peninsula page.  For all its flaws, Facebook is a strong connector in our beach communities.

We finished Long Beach by clipping back some frost-limp perennials in Fifth Street Park, where the very last cosmos got pulled.  Allan had covered the gunnera with leaves during an errand run the day before.

Our last work stop was brief.  I finally cut the Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen that was STILL blooming in front of the Shelburne.  I no longer wanted to wonder every day if it looked good or was frost blackened.

This one lonely stem had emerged unplanned.

the fig tree

pineapple sage looking better than mine

We rewarded ourselves for our staycation work day with dinner at the pub.

Our drinks:

I had never heard of a Salty Dog drink.  Delicious because I love salt and I love grapefruit juice.  Amazingly, Allan had never before had a hot buttered rum.

view from our favourite table

chopped salad with chicken and a pub burger

and our favourite desserts

My BOOK had arrived at the post office today, per an email notice, but it was closed so I would have to wait till tomorrow.  I read a short book instead, which turned out to be a moderately well written and quite interesting experience of the Hillary Clinton campaign, 2016.

As with Hillary’s memoir, What Happened, I felt by the end that Hillary would be a good and kind person to know (and a much finer president than what we have now).

 

 

 

 

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Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Port of Ilwaco

We had to rise “early” to be to the port by ten so that Allan could help with the crab pot tree.

While he and others got started, I did some planting in the boatyard garden of plants I had dug in a path widening project yesterday: Egyptian walking onions, sanguisorba, some Persicaria ‘Firetail’ and some phlomis.

still interesting

cosmos, pink yarrow, California poppies (and santolina)

rosemary and ceanothus both sporting some blue flowers

lavender

California poppies

penstemons

cosmos

A the end of the boatyard, the CoHo King came in for its off season paint job.

CoHo Charters Captain Butch Smith in yellow

me and Butch making sure all goes well

Just past the boatyard stands the crab pot tree, where more floats were added and lights secured with zip ties.

A float for Kevin Soule, who died in a crabbing accident on Willapa Bay this past year.

the volunteers, organized by Our Jenna (Queen La De Da)

The star had been left in a storage unit in north Long Beach.  While it was fetched, I took a walk along the marina with Della and her corgis.

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Howerton Avenue (telephoto)

Both Jim and Della are in the Coast Guard Auxiliary, so I got her to tell me about some of what they do, including safety instruction and even escorting boats upriver.

Salt Pub is being remodeled to include the lower floor.

a new bar top being stained in beautifully warm weather

Laila of Salt meets a corgi

high tide

the condor

Back at the crab pot tree, the star had arrived.

Allan and Jim on the tree

Jim at the top

Della hands up some ties.

They all said it was easier to climb up than to get down.

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Coast Guard floats

Allan’s photo

Jim installing the star (Allan’s photo)

As a finishing touch, CoHo Butch brought some fishermen’s boots for the crab pot snowman.

I learned that Evertuff boots are the favourite brand.

I was then very proud of us for going to the pharmacy and getting flu jabs, which we have never done before.  I had a terrible fear of side effects interfering with work so had waited till the good weather was done.  As I write this three days later, neither of us had any side effects at all.

home

The crab pot time had given me only about an hour to do some weeding.

Skooter helped.

I moved this last bit of firewood under cover behind the garage.

That was the end of last winter’s windfalls.

A horrid sight by the wood pile: the golden foliage threaded through the eucalyptus is bindweed that has crept in from the gear shed yard.

ominous

Allan added a third birdhouse to where I had noticed a lack with only two.

I went with Allan while he grocery shopped at Sid’s supermarket, right across the street from the Shelburne Hotel, and in the hotel garden I planted a goodly start of Thalictrum ‘Elin’ from our last day at Klipsan Beach Cottages, and some Egyptian walking onions, and put some decorative branches in containers:

We watered the Depot Restaurant window boxes and went home again, where Allan managed some more work on his greenhouse lean-to project before night fell.

Much later in the evening as we watched some telly, we heard the rain finally begin.

 

 

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