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Posts Tagged ‘Bill Clearman’

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Tuesday was intermittently rainy and became a day of blogging all about the Cannon Beach Cottage tour.  We sort of called the weather wrong and could have worked and yet it was satisfying to get the cottage tour posts all done in one day.  Allan was proud of the tasty dinner he made with tomatoes, apples, and peppers from the garden.

in the frying pan

in the frying pan

DSC05509

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

The Anchorage Cottages

I felt inspired to start working our way down the fall projects list by pruning viburnums at The Anchorage.  I knew resort manager Beth did not like the viburnums being up over the gutters.  Also the more leaves it has, the more it stinks when it rains.  (Yes, this viburnum is a bit of a stinker.) It is unfortunate that they were planted so close to the cottages.  I also wanted to make it possible for the staff to get back there to wash windows and do building maintenance.  (The flowering quince in the corner is also due for a trim, but not today.)

If I had been a guest in the cottage behind the green wall, I’d have not wanted to lose the green privacy, so for that reason I felt bad about cutting it down.  Beth thinks that guests will appreciate having more light.

before

before


Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

I am obsessed with privacy and felt sad when the guest who IS staying in that room said, “I liked the privacy.”  Once you cut it, you can’t put it back.

There is a new Japanese maple there that will grow up and provide some privacy without being right next to the wall.

after

after


Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Fortunately, the guest’s darling corgi gave me a kiss, which I was told was unusual, and everything was better.

She gave me a smooch.

She gave me a smooch.

I had to choose between tree-like or shrub-like on that viburnum, and so much shrub-like growth had started from below that it was easier to cut it down than to keep clipping all the lower sprouts.  My idea is that it will come back like the hedged virburnum in the center courtyard and can be allowed to be about a third of the way up the window for privacy.

center courtyard

center courtyard


center courtyard hedge

center courtyard hedge; there is a path behind it for building maintenance


The center courtyard arbutus is stunning this week.

The center courtyard arbutus is stunning this week.


Arbutus detail: Strawberry-like fruits will follow.

Arbutus detail: Strawberry-like fruits will follow.

 

our load of debris (Allan's photo)

our load of debris (Allan’s photo)

Now we had a big trailer load of debris to dump so we drove up Sandridge Road to…

Peninsula Landscape Supply

…where I took some photos for their Facebook page while Allan offloaded the branches.

We live in the land of double wides, including living in one ourselves.  On the way, Allan photographed one arriving while we waited on the shoulder to let them pass.

on Pioneer Road

on Pioneer Road


Peninsula Landscape Supply

Peninsula Landscape Supply


offloaded debris (Allan's photo)

offloading debris (Allan’s photo)


The debris gets ground up into mulch.

The debris gets ground up into mulch.

rocks

new planters that look like bark

new planters that look like bark


shell planter

shell planter


This water feature basin looked like concrete but was lightweight plastic...with peeling paint so I wondered if I could afford it.

This water feature basin looked like concrete but was lightweight plastic…with peeling paint so I wondered if I could afford it.

Not wanting to think about another project, I did not pursue my thought about the possible lower price of the peely water bowl.

Another customer had a cute old truck.

Another customer had a cute old ’54 truck.


He was using it as a hauling truck despite its vintage, cute appearance.

He was using it as a hauling truck despite its vintage, cute appearance.

Wiegardt Gallery

On the way to our next job, we swung by the Wiegardt Gallery just to have a peek at our old garden which is now in the fine care of Todd, artist Eric’s brother.  Who should be parked between us and the front garden but our good friend Bill Clearman, there to work on the carpentry of the front door.

That's our Bill!

That’s our Bill!


the familiar sign of the Wiegardt Gallery

the familiar sign of the Wiegardt Gallery


Todd has the north garden bed much better weeded than we did...

Todd has the north garden bed much better weeded than we did…

Marilyn’s Garden

Today was our week to go to Surside and attend to Marilyn’s garden.

view from the street

view from the street


colchicum by the driveway

colchicum by the driveway


the north end of the garden

the north end of the garden

The Miscanthus zebrinus below is all splayed out from wind, with a tidy little new tuft coming up in the middle.

Miscanthus zebrinus

Miscanthus zebrinus

We could get in there and trim the old growth off, and we just might…next time.  Although I kind of like the wild swirly wave-like look of it, I have forgotten what other good plants might be buried in there.

center" Solidago 'Fireworks. The whole garden is blown about and whirl-y.

center: Solidago ‘Fireworks. The whole garden is blown about and whirl-y by our big wind a couple of weeks ago.


view straight across from back porch with neighbours' garage hidden

view straight across from back porch with neighbours’ garage hidden


looking northwest from back porch

looking northwest from back porch


Bees were all over the Helianthus 'Lemon Queen'.

Bees were all over the Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’.


a big bumble bee

a big bumble bee

DSC09493

looks furry and pettable...better not.

looks furry and pettable…better not.

Klipsan Beach Cottages

Bella watched us from the deck. (Allan's photo)

Bella watched us from the deck. (Allan’s photo)

At KBC, I was inspired to do another fall clean up project.

Self-seeded ferns blocked the view of Denny's bubbler.

Self-seeded ferns blocked the view of Denny’s bubbler.


I tackled this side and Allan came in from the other side.

I tackled this side and Allan came in from the other side.


after...We were out of time; next week we'll get the roots of those ferns out.

after…We were out of time; next week we’ll get the roots of those ferns out.


Mary's tree peony looking autumnal.

Mary’s tree peony is looking autumnal (the brown leaves behind the cosmos).

(I suddenly have an ominous feeling that I lost my start of that yellow tree peony in my own garden.  Must look for it!)

Coreopsis 'Flower Tower' as tall as the greenhouse.

Coreopsis ‘Flower Tower’ as tall as the greenhouse.


Schizostylis brightening up the garden.

Schizostylis brightening up the garden.


the weekly view southwest across the birdbath

the weekly view southwest across the birdbath

As we gardened at KBC, the sky got continually darker and I wondered if we would be able to complete our next job before considerable rain arrived.

Golden Sands Assisted Living

The rain did hold off while we did almost an hour of strimming the lawn and weeding and deadheading in the Golden Sands courtyard.

The lights glowed from the rooms and the residents were in the dining room having dinner.

The lights glowed from the rooms and the residents were in the dining room having dinner.  (Southwest quadrant of the garden)


Southeast quadrant

Southeast quadrant


Northeast quadrant and dining room window (left)

Northeast quadrant and dining room window (left)


northwest quadrant

northwest quadrant

As we drove home, the rain arrived with perfect timing.  After yesterday’s watering, this will hold all the Long Beach and Ilwaco planters well into next week.

A good rain fell overnight.

A good rain fell overnight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Friday, 26 December 2014

When our friend Lisa of the Hydrangea House (and previously from Crank’s Roost, a longtime job of ours back when she owned that little Seaview cottage) invited us to her Boxing Day open house, I went back and forth a dizzying number of times. On Christmas Day, I made what I thought was a final decision to let social anxiety rule and not go.  And then, on Boxing Day itself, I changed my mind again and Lisa was kind enough to not let the backing and forthing bother her.

She assured me that the open house hosted by her and her spouse Buzz could be blog fodder, so here we go.

The house has now been named, in Japanese letters, after our dear friend Bill Clearman.

The house has now been named, in Japanese letters, after our dear friend Bill Clearman.

The house is of special interest to me not only because we used to prune the hydrangeas but because Bill Clearman, working with a Japanese architect, was the builder.

corner of garage, approaching the walkway

corner of garage, approaching the walkway

One of the house’s significant features is the blue tile roof on the garage, the walkway, and the house itself.  Here are daylight photos from an earlier visit.

The approach to the house that we walked tonight after dark.

The approach to the house that we walked tonight after dark.

house

a small part of the field of 275 blue hydrangeas

walkway to guest house

walkway to guest house

Bill painstakingly fit together the posts and beams using Japanese tools.

Bill painstakingly fit together the posts and beams using Japanese tools.

The left side of the walkway is planted with noxious and firmly entrenched English Ivy.  It would be hell to remove, but I’d replace it with a collection of hellebores and, say, epimidiums.

to the front door

to the front door

to the right of the steps, the sand garden had Maddy's footprints and a rubber dog toy.

to the right of the steps, the sand garden had Maddy’s footprints and a rubber dog toy. (Allan’s photo)

Allan's photo with Maddy's "kong" chew toy.

Allan’s photo with Maddy’s “kong” chew toy.

a waterlogue of the sand garden from a gardening day of the past

a waterlogue of the sand garden from a gardening day of the past

by the front door (Allan's photo, for Garden Tour Nancy)

by the front door (Allan’s photo, for Garden Tour Nancy)

the massive fireplace in the living room

Inside:  the massive fireplace in the living room

and the obligatory Waterlogue

and the obligatory Waterlogue

detail

detail

There is an art theme shared by the two parties we attended this season, as there is also a photo or painting of a water tower in Debbie’s house, and I meant to ask her the significance but I forgot.

A new wooden floor was recently laid by Bill, replacing (I think) carpeting from the previous homeowners.

A new mahogany floor was recently laid by Bill, replacing carpeting from the previous homeowners.

lr

To the right, I parked myself in the cozy seating spot for much of the party….

after taking a plate of snacks from the first wave of food in the dining room.

after taking a plate of snacks from the first wave of food in the dining room.

the tree, which was purchased from the Ilwaco High School Music Boosters annual Christmas tree sale

the tree, which was purchased from the Ilwaco High School Music Boosters annual Christmas tree sale

My good friend Maddy, living in hope of someone dropping good food.

My good friend Maddy, living in hope of someone dropping good food.

I made an excursion onto the east side deck to have a look at the hydrangeas.

the hydrangeas with old papery flowers hanging on

the hydrangeas with old papery flowers hanging on

The vast hydrangea field extends all along the front of the guest house.

The vast hydrangea field extends all along the front of the guest house.  I was pleased to see that pavers have now been set into the river rock for better access.  I used to find that so hard to walk on.

from the deck, Allan's photo; in the daytime, you would be able to view Willapa Bay's changing tides.

from the deck, Allan’s photo; in the daytime, you would be able to view Willapa Bay’s changing tides.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan checked on the fairy door.

Allan checked on the fairy door.

Patti J was there and sat with us.

our Patti

our Patti

Maddy settled down with us for awhile.

Maddy settled down with us for awhile.

my sit spot haven

my sit spot haven

the view from my seat

the view from my seat

and another view from my sit spot

and another view from my sit spot

I looked up and marveled at Bill's work on the high ceiling.  (Note the high windows that bring in much daylight)

I looked up and marveled at Bill’s work on the high ceiling. (Note the high windows that bring in much daylight)

up

If I am not mistaken the beams are all fitted together with the use of Japanese woodworking tools and with no nails or screws.

up2

The main course of food appeared, with brioches made by Pink Poppy Bakery.

mains

note the blue calico plates; I love them (and have a few myself)

Desserts included Pink Poppy cookies and some of the Pink Poppy pecan pie that I had read of and was pleased to get to sample.

desserts, with Ray from Astoria in a festive tie

desserts, with Ray from Astoria in a festive tie

one of the desserts

another of the desserts

One of Buzz’s sons kept the fire going; the fireplace is large enough to take a big log.  From where I sat, I admired the built in storage for firewood.

fire

 

detail

Buzz was a consummate host, circulating and making sure everyone was well supplied with food and drink.

buzz

Painted in Waterlogue

Having read Buzz’s book, Father’s Day, I was especially pleased to meet his son Zach.  Zach asked me what day Allan and I had been married.  I told him the date ten years ago and he immediately told me what day of the week that date had fallen on.  I had read of this, but hearing it in person boggles the mind.

Zach in red

Zach in red

Sometimes I am nostalgic about gardening here. When I looked out the window in the dark and saw the stems of the hydrangeas they called to me but not loudly enough to really want to prune them again.  It’s a job for younger gardeners with good knees.

stems, through the window, telephoto from where I sat

stems, through the window, telephoto from where I sat

Later in the party, Allan had a long schmooze with Buzz on the topic of motorcycling.

Allan and Buzz discussing a fascinating subject

Allan and Buzz discussing a fascinating subject

I met Cynthia from Astoria and I was surprised, as always, to learn that she reads this blog.  While suffering at times from the usual social anxiety, I practiced asking questions.  It’s an easy solution at times, as I am interested in the answers.  The sometimes impossible part is making the approach or sitting down in a group, especially a group of elegant looking people while feeling like a peasant (and like someone with a very, very small life).  I wandered around a bit taking photos of objects, which behavior might have looked a little weird, and then Waterlogued some in order to look serenely occupied.

amaryllis

I well remember typing on an LC Smith typewriter like that.

I well remember typing on an LC Smith typewriter like that.

Painted in Waterlogue

vase

 

Painted in Waterlogue

lamps

As we departed, the evergreen smell from the small grove of redwoods by driveway filled the air with the essence of winter.  I was glad we had rousted ourselves out of the lazy comforts of home.  Thanks, Lisa and Buzz.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday October 9, 2013, part one

When I heard that the owners of Crank’s Roost had bought the Willapa bay view house where we used to prune 300 hydrangeas, I went through a gamut of emotions:  I thought I had said goodbye to those darned [word edited for politeness] hydrangeas forever (when the house went up for sale a couple of years ago).  I could not bear the thought of seeing them again!  Maybe Lisa would not want to hire us for the job anyway.  But…remember how excited we were when we first started the job in August of 2007?  The garden had so much potential, and we almost got it back to its original state of Japanese style perfection.  And then…remember how sad we were when we got sort-of-fired about a month later!?  And remember how even though, when we were re-hired just to prune the hydrangeas, all the beauty we saw while working there?  But…remember how hard the hydrangea job is and how long it took…and yet…remember the mossy meandering woodsy semi-formal landscape and how much it needed a loving gardener to care for it?

The builder of the house, local carpenter Bill Clearman, had kept his hand in caring for the house while it was for sale, but, with the previous owners deceased, had not been able to get us back to prune during that time.

By the time Lisa asked us to come assess the garden situation, I had gone through all the emotions from dread to delight and settled on being quite pleased to go back there again.  So today….

peaceful glade next to garage

peaceful glade next to garage

up the driveway...

on up the driveway…

wall enclosing parking courtyard

wall enclosing parking courtyard

Again we see the glorious blue tile roofs...garage, walkway, house, guesthouse

Again we see the glorious blue tile roofs…garage, walkway, house, guesthouse all topped in blue
azalea cloud gone all spiky.  Lisa said the path had disappeared before she clipped back...

azalea cloud gone all spiky. Lisa said the path had disappeared before she clipped back…

I found myself itching to clip those azaleas into a drifting cloud shape again.

Looking from the guest house back to the front door, along the blue tile walkway

Looking from the guest house back to the front door, along the blue tile walkway

I had walked all the way around the house and had only taken one photo of the hydrangeas on the bay side, perhaps because the sight of them (about 275 now, I think) was so overwhelming.

just one corner

just one corner

They have not been pruned since we last did them, and new flowers are mixed with deadheads.  After we had walked around other areas, we went back to view the hydrangeas again.

from the porch

from the porch

Interestingly, the hydrangeas gone wild are still not tall enough to block the view.  The previous owner wanted them cut too low, I thought, to get the most profuse possible bloom.  I think I might have just a tad more say in the height this time around.  The other great change will be that the previous owner wanted them pruned in the bad weather month of February.  Many times we stood under the eaves as sleet, hail, and even snow passed over.  I remember texting a friend who was coming to help us rake up debris with continued dire weather reports as Allan and I sheltered by the guest house door.  (During those years, the owners were always gone to a warmer clime during the hydrangea pruning time.)  As the weather that day got worse and worse, we aborted the whole mission and the drive up there had been for nothing.  Lisa is all for pruning in the fall, with possibly a touch up in spring.

from the covered deck

from the covered deck

Now me, I like to leave hydrangea blooms on all winter because they look pretty cool with frost or snow on them, but this particular time I will be very happy to address the pruning starting next week rather than face this much of a mess in colder weather.  Another huge improvement:  instead of dragging all the branches many rough yards to a burn pile close to the bay, we can make piles right next to the field for our friend Ed Strange, who does mowing and lots of “heavy” gardening, to haul away.

They run all the way to in front of the guest house, where the hydrangea field becomes even wider...

They run all the way to in front of the guest house, where the hydrangea field becomes even wider…

I do remember well the grim first two days of pruning when it feels like one will never get done, and then how on days three through five (!!!) one can feel that progress is being made and there is a distant hope of completion and then the joy of getting done on day six.  Perhaps not having to haul to a burn pile will make the job less daunting.  In the autumn, with longer days than February, it may take fewer than six days to complete the job.

Inside the house we marveled at the ceiling of the living room.  Bill had given us a tour of the house once before, and told us how he had raised the beams to the ceiling on his own.

living room ceiling

living room ceiling

He had bought Japanese carpentry tools in order to do the job with complete authenticity.

walkway from guesthouse, looking south to front porch

walkway from guesthouse, looking south to front porch

inside the roof of the walkway, carpenter craftsman Bill Clearman's artistry

inside the roof of the walkway, carpenter craftsman Bill Clearman’s artistry

I am thrilled that Lisa agrees with me that the ivy must eventually go.  (See noivyleague.com.)  She had already clipped it back from encroaching on the bricks and had pulled it off one pillar.   I can see a collection of hellebores where the ivy is.  Lisa asked what to have for summer….How about hellebores mixed with hardy fuchsias?  But first…the hydrangea pruning…then the azalea pruning…

Before we left, I had to take a photo of the red bridge, off to the side over a swale which fills with winter water.

enticing mossy path....

enticing mossy path….

and the red bridge

and the red bridge

I am so ready.  This time I believe that the garden is going to get to make a complete comeback.

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