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Sunday, 9 July 2017

Even though I only had five hours of sleep due to my cat Smokey scratching and crying at the closed cat door at 6 AM, and then my wakeful worries about Skooter’s happiness while he recuperates indoors, I found a lot of energy for weeding.

During the day for the next 7 days, the other three cats get to go outdoors, while poor Skooter stays in the bathroom feeling grumpy.

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Calvin and Frosty outdoors

We had a lovely mid afternoon garden visit from Mark, Brian, and their friend John.  We had toured Mark and Brian’s garden on Wednesday.  Today, Mark and Brian brought us a dozen eggs from their happy hens.

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Allan’s photo

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Brian, Mark, me, John

It was a good long visit to every corner of the garden.

I immediately recognized Mark’s “Lavender Winds Kite Club” t shirt, a club whose existence very much pleased me when I would see their banner years ago at the Long Beach Kite Festival.

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This was the Lavender Winds banner.

I am always interested in what other people want to remember when they see our garden.  With Mark’s permission, here are some of the photos that he took that day.

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front path

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front garden

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looking out the trowel gate

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Allan’s garden (and the ladies in waiting table)

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Allan’s shed

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path to  back garden

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The various plant tables were a hit.

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Geranium ‘Rozanne’

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back garden

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Danger Tree bed

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bogsy wood

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west front garden

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west back garden

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garden talk

We are planning a campfire when the tallest lilies are in bloom.  I’m so glad to have connected with these local gardeners.

Allan had had a productive weekend, with these projects completed on Sunday evening:

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the work trailer, before

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and after

He painted a cool salvaged thingie I had found down at the port and installed it and four shutter panels that he’s painted months before:

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before

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after

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The doors open for looking through!

I weeded till late and feel pretty well pleased with how the garden looks right now.  One more long weeding day might achieve near perfection, but first come at least four work days.

 

Friday, 7 July 2017

I picked two bouquets of flowers, which Allan delivered to the Don Nisbett Art Gallery and to Salt Hotel for this evening’s art walk.  I would have sent one to Time Enough Books, as well, if I knew for sure they would be open.

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two bouquets

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my 3 new plants from the Basket Case

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at the Nisbett Gallery

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our Don

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at Salt Hotel, last week’s flowers were still good.

I was inspired to keep on edging, this time the front garden.

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before

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trusty half moon edger

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after

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after

I weeded inside the beds as I went along.  That Eleagnus ‘Quicksilver’ is sending out runners all over.  I pruned up the main shrub and went after the ill placed starts. Fortunately, they came out easily.

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Eleagnus coming up across the driveway!

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another before

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and after; I see a bulge to the left that I might edge out.

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Allan’s garden during…

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and after

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and further along toward the back garden

That was most satisfying. (Thanks to Allan for dumping the barrows of sod.)

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Even though I had a strong desire to stay home, we did go to the Saturday Market.  I had been looking at last week’s photos and wondered if the gold leaf plant in the Northwest Naturals display could perhaps have been Agastache ‘Golden Jubilee’!

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Last week…could it be?

Unfortunately, their booth was not there this week.

I had just had breakfast, so two mouth watering food booths were passed by.

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a new booth

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hanging flower pots

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De Asis Farm produce

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cuties

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curbside garden by Ilwaco Pavilion

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a mural getting painted on the side of Salt Hotel (Allan’s photo)

We used our drinking water bottles to water two newish plants in the curbside gardens and then went home.  Our Kathleen stopped by for a good visit, having picked up our tickets for next Saturday’s garden tour in Menlo (near South Bend).  I was excited to read the descriptions of the five gardens that will be on offer.

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I then had big plans to weed from late afternoon till dark for company tomorrow and next weekend.  All that changed when Skooter walked by my wheelbarrow and I saw he had a big wound (about half an inch, and gaping) on a back leg.  He got bundled into a cat box and we were off to the emergency vet, Columbia Animal Hospital. in Astoria.

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on the way

We were so lucky, because sometimes the weekend emergency vet is much further afield.  I had not time to mentally prepare myself for the bridge and “city” traffic (not that preparation helps much).  We got in after an hour a a half wait in the vet’s lobby; there were many emergencies, and some before us had waited longer.

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Columbia River view from the vet exam room

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lovely flowers on the desk

The most upsetting story was a mom and daughter who came in after us, with the daughter, in her 20s, carrying a little dog.  They had come down all the way from Seattle and after driving five hours had gone straight to the beach on the Long Beach peninsula, where a truck had hit their dog on the “beach highway” and just driven off without stopping.  I think and hope the little dog was going to be all right.  I’m still thinking about how scary it must have been to try to find the emergency vet, and the drive to Astoria, and a vacation ruined.  Makes me tear up right now in sympathy for them.

Now Skooter will have to stay indoors for a week and that makes me sad, too.  I liked the vet very much.  She had the same philosophy as me: That is is dangerous for cats to go outdoors, and that it is also dangerous for humans to go outdoors.  And that she, and I, and Skooter, would rather take the risk than never breathe free air or walk on grass.  On the other hand…we humans have to deal with Skooter’s wounds, and this is the second time he has gotten into trouble.

The day’s weeding session was an extremely short evening one, as we did not get home till after six and had to set up the cat convalescent room in the second bathroom.  I just have to relax and accept that the garden is not going to be perfect for company.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, 6 July 2017

It was just an ordinary watering day.

On the way out of town, I saw something that displeased me.

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bike parked in a tree garden (Allan’s photo)

No one in the adjacent business knew whose bike it was.  😦  It’s a garden, not a bike rack.

Long Beach

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Long Beach welcome sign

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We gave the welcome sign some fertilizer.  It is heavy on blue with Geraniums ‘Rozanne’ and ‘Orion’.

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Agastache ‘Summer Glow’ does not provide the big show that we used to get from Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’.  I have regrets.

We saw our friend Ed Strange (Strange Landscaping) and crew working on the garden at Subway and stopped for a chat and a pet for Jackson.

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My good friend Jackson and me

Allan and I watered the 37 downtown planters; he walked south and I walked north.

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This Geranium ‘Rozanne’ looked wilted.  Had I forgotten to water it last time?

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Nope…someone had pulled out a bunch of stems and just left them in the plant (twice this many once I was done teasing all the broken ones out).

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Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’

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Queen Fabiola and Rozanne

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Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ finally blooming.  It was WINDY.

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delicately delicious white alpine strawberries in a planter…the shopkeeper gets to snack on them because people don’t think they are ripe yet.

Allan’s Long Beach watering photos:

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Rozanne, cosmos, California poppies

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Geranium ‘Rozanne’, Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’, and the not showy enough painted sage with just a tuft of pink bracts at the top.

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Why is the painted sage not coloring as much along the stem this year? (or last year)

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white painted sage, also not showy…

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compare to these from pre-2016 with more colour from bracts

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elephant garlic losing its little hat

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lots of people by Hungry Harbor and Sweet Phee’s

We got done with our watering in time for the luxury of a sit down break at Abbracci Coffee Bar.

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leaving our weeding buckets and hoses outside

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Pink Poppy Bakery’s “Dad Tested Chocolate Chip Cookies”

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my favourite of the new paintings by Brad Carlson

Revived, we weeded Veterans Field and Fifth Street Park.

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Fifth Street Park (Allan’s photo)

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I clipped back this big Miscanthus to show off lilies that are planted too close and must be moved this fall.

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Allan’s photo

We watered the seven Sid Snyder beach approach planters.

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I should bring two Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ to replace the plants that got stolen from either side of the lamp post, and plant them with plaintive “I want to live here!” tags.  It’s been so long I can’t remember what was stolen.  Eryngiums, I think.

We met this little rescue dog named Molly.  Her person told us that Molly had been thrown out of a car in a bag.  Thank goodness she was rescued and now has a great life.

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Molly (Allan’s photos)

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Echinops (blue globe thistle) in the planter by Worldmark resort. (Allan’s photo)

Allan carried big jugs of water to the westernmost planter, whose water does not work and whose new plants are still there.

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New gazanias are a bit distressed, must remember to water this planter twice next week.

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I would have trimmed off the wilted foliage. Maybe Allan did after taking this photo.

On the way to Ilwaco, we went around the block for a closer look at the planted boxes in front of Artistic Bouquets.  They were planted up by John, an apprentice of Mark whose garden we toured yesterday.

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Artistic Bouquets planter…I got Agastache ‘Golden Jubilee’ envy.

Ilwaco

Allan dropped me off at the boatyard to weed and water, while he got the water trailer and watered the Ilwaco street trees and planters.

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weeding the back edge while watering from behind the fence

All had to look good because Friday night would be an art walk with people walking from downtown businesses to the port.  We would not be going because for the past three years, I find art walks to be too peopley for my social comfort zone.  Today marks the three year anniversary of a shunning situation that represented the worst side of small town living.  However, the resulting increased desire for reclusiveness has gifted me with much higher productivity and less aimless “hanging out”.  I think it is a good thing, and also quite possibly a bad thing, or, as Monk would say, a blessing and a curse.

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south one third of the boatyard garden

The weeding went pretty easily, and I had long enough hoses to do over half of the watering from the front side, which enabled multi-tasking.

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Allan’s photo, looking south

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo: reseeded poppies by the sidewalk

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Allan’s photo

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a flying bird!

Our reward for a long work day will be three days off.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Touring Mark and Brian’s Garden

With our workday almost done, we drove almost to Nahcotta to tour a garden new to us.  When garden owner Mark had posted some beautiful photos of it on the Peninsula Gardeners Facebook group, I had commented that I would be hanging over the fence trying to see in if I walked by. I was forthwith invited to come visit.  Because I focus on one thing at a time, I did not look closely at the address until we were on our way from Klipsan Beach Cottages.  Then I said “OH my gosh, I think this is the garden I have wanted to see for a long time!”  Sure enough, as we parked, I knew that it was the place where I HAVE peered wistfully over the front fence, wishing to see what was in the secret garden.

I am incorporating into this story some of Mark’s photos that drew me into this hidden paradise.

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the front garden

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beginning our tour

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front garden

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by the woodsy edge of the front garden

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cool and wavy trellises

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cosmos!

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deep blue Salvia patens

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washing machine tub planters!

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talking about the assorted raised boxes

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Now I want a kitchen garden just like this.

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The sides come off.

I’d put a kitchen garden like that in the sunny spot between our fence and Devery’s garage parking pad so we could both harvest.

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Allan’s photo: fence between front and back garden

At last, I got to go through the gate to the back garden.

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having entered the secret garden (Allan’s photo)

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view upon entering

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Immediately, we heard the sound of a waterfall and found the source: a large pond with stream and two waterfalls.  Mark said when they bought the house, it was a strawberry bed, and as he cleaned it out, he found a big cement pond.  He and Brian then constructed the stream bed that runs down a slope from behind.

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Mark’s photo

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Mark’s photo

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up the slope to the waterfall

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I did not quite succeed with this photo of the pond from under the maple branch.  Let’s just call it impressionistic.

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Allan’s photo

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maple admiration society

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at the pond’s edge

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Allan’s photo

We turned our attention to the garden on the west side of the house, which I had been thrilled to see was a double wide, like ours, but with better windows and nice wood siding.

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Mark’s photo

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looking across to the pond, what a view! (Mark’s photo)

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Mark’s photo

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west facing deck with strong shadows

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on the porch

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Mark’s photo

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Mark’s photo

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west side flower garden

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dierama (Mark’s photo)

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Mark’s photo

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a deer fenced area…The additional height on top was added because deer jumped this!

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just done blooming

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on the shed wall

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Allan’s photo

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roses protected from deer (Allan’s photo)

Beyond the house is a luxuriously large chicken coop.

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just part of the multi-roomed coop

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friendly girls

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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an old door recycled from Penttila’s Chapel

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up the ramp, in the door, hoping for a treat

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by the greenhouse

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echeverias

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geranium with great foliage

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on the corner of the deck

We began to wend our way out of the garden because we had more watering to do in Ilwaco before day’s end.

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love these grasses in wooden boxes

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another view of the pond

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Allan’s photo

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hydrangea (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

Soon we are going to have Mark and Brian over to have a walk about in our garden.  I felt so lucky to have gained entry to theirs.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017 (part one)

Allan had not gotten enough sleep because of Skooter’s 2 AM antics:

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Skooter somehow attained the highest bookshelf.

We set off on our work rounds that take us north once a week, along with a plan for a garden tour (which will be tomorrow’s post).

Port of Ilwaco

We began by bucket watering the drive over garden, a small pocket between two driveways,  at the port.

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It had been driven over.  (Allan’s photo)

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driving by the boat yard

The Depot Restaurant

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southeast of dining deck (Allan’s photo)

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north side of dining deck

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The Escallonia ‘Pink Princess’, which wants to be ten feet tall, is growing again to hide the Clamshell Railroad sign.  The restaurant was a train depot in days of old.

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I’ve suggested removing the escallonia.  Chef Michael thinks, I am sure correctly, that it keeps a bad driver from running into the corner of the building.

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after

The Red Barn

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These helianthus have to go.  They don’t get enough water.  (Allan’s photo)

After watering the garden and the planted barrels, we walked next door to

Diane’s garden.

We had to walk along the highway because the field we usually cross was occupied.

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These tire tracks did not inspire confidence.

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One of the back yard planters

I got to see my good friend Misty, although she went straight into the house when Diane brought her home from errands.  Then Holly came out of the truck.

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Do I hafta sit?

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not for long!

Whiskey was also visiting.

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So ready to play with Holly.

We drove back to the beach side on Sid Snyder Road to…

The Anchorage Cottages

Many guest vehicles were in the parking lot, so we parked behind the office, giving you a different entry view as I walked around the west side of the cottages.

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We were greeted by our good friend Mitzu, who has had to take tranquilizers because of a week’s worth of fireworks noise.

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Mitzu has had a stressful week of fear.  (Allan’s photo)

I weeded and deadheaded; Allan fertilized all the containers and the window boxes.

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center courtyard, Rose ‘New Dawn’

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by the office

We drove across Pioneer Road to the bay side to see what new plants might have arrived at

The Basket Case Greenhouse.

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successfully growing a tomato in a bag of soil

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greeted by my friend Penny

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a real sweetheart

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Darrell in the center greenhouse (Allan’s photo)

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gazanias coming forward

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gazanias

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gazanias

We drove back to the ocean side on Cranberry Road to make a delivery to

Jim Unwin’s Hobbit Studio.

We were giving Jim and Annie a Feliway cat comfort diffuser that I no longer needed, for Annie to try to help their two cats get along better.  This entailed a tour of the art studio, which we have visited before on the peninsula wide studio tour that takes place every Thanksgiving weekend.

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Jim’s Hobbit Studio

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Jim at his work bench.

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a double silhouette and a little sailboat (Allan’s photo)

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Allan’s photo

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art ingredients

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Annie’s rose (Allan’s photo)

We drove north to

Klipsan Beach Cottages

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Tetrapanax ‘Steroidal Giant’ taller than the fence (Allan’s photo)

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Tetrapanax

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red dragonfly (Allan’s photo)

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June bug

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lily and roses

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birdbath view

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east gate

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garden art from the Forsythea shop in Astoria

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Mary’s new rose

Our good friend Bella was in the basement and did not want to come out.  She is terrified of fireworks and despite being given tranquilizers and having music played for her to drown out the noise, she has tried to dig through the floor, has hidden in the closet, and has climbed into the bathtub for safety.

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She had her paw over one ear.

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Nine days of fireworks fear for peninsula animals (Allan’s photo); from June 28th to July 5th.  Ridiculously long.

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on the basement couch

We drove further north, almost to Nahcotta, for a garden tour which will be tomorrow’s post, and then south to do some watering of the curbside gardens at

The Port of Ilwaco.

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Ilwaco pavilion curbside garden (Allan’s photo)

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Something happened at the port.  (Allan’s photo)

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the condor (Allan’s photo)

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Westernmost bed needs its daisies clipped or pulled.  Next week.

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a fasciated Linaria stem in the Salt Hotel garden

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eryngium, yarrow, and parsley

Join us tomorrow on the garden tour that delighted us today.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Traffic and general noisy holiday chaos kept us contentedly home today.  I focused pretty much non stop on my back garden edging.  Too bad I did not put it on the work board to be erased!  The wind howled and roared all day.  It wears on me, and yet I am grateful that it keeps  us from having mosquitos.  However, ten miles an hour would probably be sufficient for that; we really don’t require twenty mile an hour winds day after day.

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before

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before.  The edger handle, mid right, shows where I left off on the weekend.

Allan sharpened two edgers for me, making it much easier to cut the tougher, drier sod.

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after

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after

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before (just inside west gate)

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after.  You can see that meanwhile, Allan was mowing.

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West path AKA Escallonia Lane, before

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after (two hours later)

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Allan’s photo, around the back corner from Escallonia Lane

Allan helped me tremendously by dumping my wheelbarrows of sod, probably twelve in all or more over the course of the day.  I’d fill four wheelbarrows and then he’d taken them away.

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Allan’s photo: He passed this Lunaria (money plant) every time he dumped a barrow.

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8 PM: Skooter walks the new edge.

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slightly tattered but gorgeous: a Japanese iris from Todd

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I expanded this edge some more today.

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how it looked last weekend

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The first pass was not good enough.

How very much I like a crisp edge.  Oh, here is the sort of tool I use:

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swiped from a tool site, just the classic half moon edger

I want to reread Ann Wareham’s great book, The Bad Tempered Gardener, in which she expresses opposition to an edged lawn.  I’d like to visit her famous garden, Veddw, to see in person what she does instead.

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I recommend it, and must reread it.

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Allan’s photo, in his garden area

In the evening, fireworks went on while I wrote a blog post.  BOOM for hours.  Fortunately, my cats are not scared, but I pitied the local dogs and cats (like Devery’s Jasmine, next door) who are.  Allan took some photos:

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from the front west gate

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LOUD.  Some of the booms shook the house.

Because the holiday fell midweek, the personal fireworks extravaganza in our town was not as prolonged, day after day, as it usually is.  (The fireworks are allowed for seven or eight days and nights: Ridiculous!) We did not find spent fireworks rockets in our garden or on our roof, as we have before.  A dune fire was successfully extinguished during the afternoon west of downtown Long Beach, after filling the town with smoke and ash.  On Wednesday, local volunteers would sweep the beaches to try to remove firework debris before it becomes ocean borne.  Partly because my knee problems make it hard to walk on shifting sand and partly because we have work to do, it will be a regular business day for us, and a two part blog because the day will include a delightful garden tour.

 

Monday, 3 July, part two

Karen and Steve’s garden

On the way south from working in Long Beach, we took a side road so that I could sneak a peak at a project whose progress I’ve been watching on occasional drive-bys: the building of a rock wall and resulting raised front garden at the home of landscaper Steve Clarke.  As we tried to subtly drive past while craning our necks, we were spotted and hailed by Steve’s spouse, Karen, and were delighted to be invited to tour the inner sanctum of the garden.

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We’ve been watching this front garden appear.

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The distortions of  (cheap) digital photography make it hard to show that this wall is perfectly level.

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well cut and fitted rocks (Allan’s photo)

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Steve’s plush carpet of new lawn (Allan’s photo)

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established bed on south wall of the house

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south wall garden

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the joy of garden touring

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Acer palmatum ‘Shishigashira’

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south wall sit spot

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geranium (bee) and Erysimum ‘Wenlock Beauty’, we think

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One of Karen’s artful containers

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and another

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more container combos

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containers and ingredients (new plants)

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stacked blue pots

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Allan’s photo

We walked between garage and house to Karen’s floriferous back garden.

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a mosaiced step up

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Allan’s photo

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the back garden….The house dates to the mid 1920s.

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Allan’s photo

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Allan’s photo

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I was commenting how Knautia ‘Thunder and Lightning’ tends to revert to green in one year.

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in the back garden

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detail

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These tall eryngiums in the foreground will soon be turning steely blue.

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Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ is already at is peak of blue.

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Allan’s photo

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detail and textures

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astilbes (love them)

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blue hydrangea

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Hedge is on the north side.

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Allan’s photo.  I think that’s ‘Orange Rocket’ barberry, which I am still trying (and failing) to successfully grow.

I briefly mistook these monkshood for delphiniums and had a pang of delphinium envy!

Colorful oxalis

Backlit continus (smokebush)

An agastache centerpiece

An exclamation point as you go from the back to the front garden.

Walking back around to the southwest side, we admired the kitchen garden.  I’d love to have something this organized.

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The lattice enclosure (right) hides the wheelie bin and so forth.

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on the lattice enclosure: a display of ‘Pretty Much Picasso’ petunias

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This kitty in the shop window was a guest for the day.

It was fortuitous to get invited into this garden created by true plantspeople.  Karen is good friends with Our Lorna, former owner of the site of our former longtime job, Andersen’s RV Park, and it may be that a campfire with Lorna and Karen at our garden just might be in the works.  I hope so!