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Posts Tagged ‘bulb time’

Thursday, 26 October 2017

At midnight, just as the clock turned to Thursday, a crisis struck.  My best beloved cat, Smoky, had been sleeping in my room and then sitting on my lap.  All seemed normal until I saw him walking…He looked enormous.  He had somehow bloated up all through his sides and belly, so quickly, since he had looked normal two days ago.  Yet he was eating, drinking, purring.  I called the vet and heard the “Please call the emergency vet only in a real emergency” message and felt I should wait till morning.  But I started shaking, as hard as any cliché you can think of, teeth chattering, while I tried to look up causes of cat bloating.  Dr Google was not reassuring.

I managed to get five hours of broken sleep, with Smoky sleeping and purring on my feet.  This in itself is unusual; he usually sleeps in the living room, lately curled up with Calvin, the neurotic black cat who finally has a friend to cuddle with.

At 7:30, I woke and bided my time till exactly 8 when I called the Oceanside Animal Clinic and got a 9:15 appointment.  Smoky was still purring and eating a bit of food, but he could hardly walk.  He would take a few steps, find his hind legs burdened by his increased size, and he’d just stop, like this:

I was frantic inside; I love this cat so very much.  We got him and his brother Frosty and mother Mary (who died of lung cancer last year) from a neighbour of our old house.  The cats’ first seven years were well loved and lived inside a moldy broken down motor home with a heavy smoker who doted on them. Before he died of lung cancer, he asked me to take his three cats.

At the vet, Smoky’s abdomen was tapped and drained of some fluid, which was sent off for a test that will take a week.  He had blood tests and X rays which showed a lot of internal fluid and reasonably good heart and liver, so the tentative diagnosis is a serious cancer.

a little dog to pet while we waited for the blood test results

We got to take Smoky home, with some pain medication, and we could take him back to be “tapped and drained” when the fluid builds up again.  He’s only 12.  I have been worried about him being 12, after his mother’s death at 13.  I wanted at least two more years with my best little friend. (Later I realized that he is either recently turned thirteen or is almost thirteen.)

Smoky back at home, on a sheet covering the bed blankets, because his abdomen would be “leaking”.

We went to work, bulbing.  If we could get three jobs done, we could take four or five days off.  I had been so looking forward to that time off of planting my own bulbs, decorating for Halloween, and cleaning the house for Halloween company.  Now I wish I had nothing to do other than just spending time with Smoky.  (Maybe he will feel well enough to come outdoors with me.)  The house is a tip, though. The better I clean it, the more time I’ll be indoors with my precious cat.

Today we were back to beautiful summer-like weather.  We started by planting some white narcissi and tulips at Mike’s garden.  When we stopped back at home, a package of the second round of bulbs (shipped later) had arrived, and we distributed some to Time Enough Books, the boatyard garden, and the community building garden.

Boatyard got Narcissi ‘Green Eyed Lady’ and ‘Latvian Freedom’.

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo; new blooms from the Echinops I had cut back to the ground.

Sweet peas are still blooming.  I asked Allan to take these sweet pea photos.

I was going to make an end of season sale order of more narcissi for the boatyard, but after a $400 vet bill, I don’t want to tempt my budget with any more bulb purchases this fall.  I also feel somewhat tentative about planting more narcissi here, since last spring someone picked about a hundred (that is, all of them) overnight.  (The local vet is reasonably priced.  The $400 included expensive tests and x rays.)

We planted some more bulbs at the Ilwaco Community Building.

Ilwaco Community Building

a test planting of tulips. We have seen deer in this tiered garden so….it is only a test.

autumn blooming crocus

Allan’s photo

We then got back to our planned planting and clean up at

The Depot Restaurant

where Allan cleared the hops from the dining deck lattice while I planted bulbs.

tulips and narcissi set up to plant

Allan’s befores and afters of the hops project:

the hops project, before, showing the door that leads from restaurant to dining deck

after

before, the ramp to the dining deck

after

a Pacific tree frog in the lattice

After today’s work. More fall clean up will be done after frost. 

Long Beach

We now had five more white narcissi for the Vet Field corner.  While Allan planted them, I planted a combination of yellow tulips in the big Lewis and Clark Square planter.

L&C planter; Allan helped me by pulling the bad asters that had appeared, as they seem to blow in from the dunes or other gardens.

Then on to the last of today’s planned jobs,

Diane’s garden.

before (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo, bulbs laid out to plant

bulb tossing

All done…Planting bulbs in the soft soil of the septic box was so easy.

Red Barn in the background.

Diane was pleased to see all the bulbs go on, and of course she was sympathetic about Smoky.  I got to give good dog Misty a good belly rub.

Allan also planted clumps of narcissi in the newly restored roadside garden.

The recent heavy rain had not washed out the new garden strip.

Last thing: cutting back some short (due to lack of frequent watering) Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ at the Red Barn.

our little Red Barn garden

As you can imagine, my bulbing today was done in a somber and anxious mood.

At home

There was little joy in erasing bulbing jobs from the work board.

I sat with Smoky, who purred while I wept, trying and failing not to cry because I don’t want to upset him.  I fretted about whether he was again retaining fluid and mourned over the thought of soon losing my softest, plushest, kindest cat ever.

Allan heard the sounds of the big homecoming football game up on School Hill. He walked up the hill to watch the halftime show which he’s always missed before.  The marching band often does a Halloween themed show which he wished to see.

halftime fireworks

They did not disappoint.

This year included music from Nightmare Before Christmas.

The score was Ilwaco 39, guest 0 when Allan left after the show.

The most comforting thing for me about Smoky’s dire prognosis was the support of Facebook friends.  After writing about the visit to the vet, I changed my profile photo to one of me and Smoky at one of our backyard campfires.

The comment that got to me the most was when I wrote how much I had been looking forward to my staycation reading with my best friend, Smoky.  Shannon, friend of Tony, wrote, His book says “Dear Mama — you’re the best one.” He reads it over and over.

 

 

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Sunday, 22 October 2017

Despite a forecast of rain on and off all day, I woke to fine weather and decided we must go plant bulbs.  Typing up the spreadsheets would have to wait for evenings.

Onyx, our east side neighbour (Allan’s photo). He and Skooter are mortal enemies.

Skooter (Allan’s photo)

The wheelbarrows showed the amazing amount of rain we had received over the past four days.

the final storm rain tally

 

old chair used as plant stand; its time is over.

many leaves down but only two chairs blown over

I shouldn’t have left this board propped up.

alder branch spear driven into the ground

where we are trying to raise the lawn with sod patches

The newly cleared swale did fill up.

the old swale, now with water.

Here is how it looked on Oct 14, 2016, when it filled earlier than usual.

The south end swale is full…but they all will drain soon.

Outside the fence, at our south property edge, this seasonal pond will now probably have water all winter.

looking back to the house

In the front garden, I admired windblown sanguisorba.

with cardoon overhead

Pretty sure that is S. ‘Pink Elephant’, which grows to about eight feet tall.

It is even towers over the towering Coreopsis ‘Flower Tower’.

After that home garden tour, we were off to work.

Ilwaco Post Office Garden

We did a thorough clean up of toppled cosmos, tried to eliminate the volunteer perennials sweet pea that would like to infest our volunteer garden, and planted a selection of bulbs.

before (Allan’s photo)

the damnable sweet pea (Allan’s photo)

bulbing

after

has an austere look now

I put in a row of cuttings from the silver santolina, as I would like it to run all along the front.

I leave my garden much wilder in the winter, but here I needed room for bulbs, and generally people do not understand the wild winter look.

Because we had dug out the non-draining planter at the fire station, we replaced its bulbs.  I was pleased that it still looks so good; the station sheltered it from our recent windstorms.

red plants for the fire station

Allan pulled this crocosmia. I would still like to take over the fire station garden.

Ilwaco Community Building

I was pleased to find that the community building garden, cared for by Allan, needed no weeding.  This gave me time to do some pruning while Allan planted bulbs (and time to help him finish planting them).

I thinned and lowered a tree-like red twig dogwood near the library entrance.

Allan hauling my debris.

Even though this was not my intention, I realized the long red stems will make excellent Halloween decor.

entrance garden today after pruning

Compare to the photo Allan took last week:

Even though it was not the right time of year to prune the mugo pines (which would like to be tree-like), I noticed that one might soon be unable to  read the whole sign.

I was pleased enough with the pruning to clearly reveal the address number…

But the covering of the word Ilwaco had to be fixed.

I don’t want to lose any more pretty red leaves.

I do long to lose this, one of three remaining tatty invasive patches of salal.

Fall crocus knocked down by rain (Allan’s photo)

Port of Ilwaco

Much to my surprise, we had time to plant bulbs in the curbside gardens at the port, as well, even though one rain squall made me think we would not finish.  Yet we did.  We had stopped at home to get a Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ to divide and put in a curbside bed where two huge shrubs had recently been removed.

brief, light rain

planting narcissi in former shrub area

We only plant narcissi at the port (except for tulips in the Time Enough Books garden boat).  Deer would eat tulips in the curbsides, and birds (crows or gulls) pull up most of the little bulbs such as crocus and miniature iris.

Time Enough Books boat before (Allan’s photos)

and after

more bulbing

not a bulb (Allan’s photo)

On the way home, we got some photos of the Halloween preparations going on around the flatlands of Ilwaco.

Spruce Street

The spookiest house on Spruce had skipped Halloween last year. I am thrilled that they are baaaack.

The guy will be in motion on Halloween night.

a block up the hill…I love this front garden.

on top of the hill

The higher one lives on the hill, the less likely one is to get the 400 trick or treaters that we flat landers can expect.

At home, I was able to erase three bulbing jobs from the work board.


 

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Wednesday, 18 October 2017

HuffPost headline:

A 5,000-mile-long belt of rain is battering the Northwest this week, an “atmospheric river” stretching across the Pacific Ocean from China to British Columbia.

The storm system, which some weather officials have described as “The Big Dark,” is expected to drop 10 to 15 inches of rain and snow over high elevations and 2 to 5 inches of rain over the Puget Sound region in Washington state.”

storm graphic from China to our west coast

In the rain, UPS delivered Colorblends bulbs (two sets of mixed bulbs for the Long Beach welcome sign).  All photos by Allan today

All I remember of Wednesday is that the expected really big windstorm must have veered north and hit the Seattle Tacoma area much worse than us.  Later, Melissa told me that the wind had been fierce at her home in Oysterville, too. I was in the garage all afternoon getting it ready for Bulb Time.  The rain never ceased.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

My morning began by being awakened by the tsunami siren. Its sound is so much spookier than the regular fire siren.  I had a vague memory that maybe there had been news of a “Great Shakeout” drill.  As I looked on Facebook to see if the siren was a drill or real, I wondered if maybe I should be grabbing my go bag, my laptop, my phone, and hobbling up the hill instead. Fortunately, it was a drill.

You can hear the terrifying siren sound here, after the talking, which I slept through.  How very much I hope I never hear the real thing.  It is a possibility that weighs on our minds here at the beach, and I have a go bag right next to my bed.

Yesterday’s rain:

Storm rain is the amount that comes with each storm; I don’t know how the meteorologists tell when one storm ends and the next begins.

rain gauge at 1 PM

The biggest shipment of bulbs arrived, yet with more to come next week.  I am thrilled that most of them arrived this early (by request).  I will have to use extra brainpower to imagine how I am going to sort the stragglers.

Allan’s photo

Crows were all over the apple tree.  The family (Pink Poppy Bakery and Farm) who usually pick the apples for cider were rather busy, having just had a darling new daughter and granddaughter arrive last weekend, so the apples are still on the tree.  Not for long, it seems.  Allan’s photos:

I went into the garden during a lessening of rain to pick a lot of flowers and foliage for a Friday night event: a fundraiser for local Hispanic families.  I would be in the midst of bulb sorting hell by then, and because my most productive time is evening, I would not be attending the event.  It also sounded to me like too much peopling for someone with bulb brain. But at least I could provide bouquets.  The cosmos had been terribly battered by yesterday’s rain and so I was only able to find a few stems with unsodden flowers.

The swale had not filled with water yet.

our biggest windfall from yesterday’s storm

and a small but deadly spear into the ground

I was in a downpour by the time I finished picking.

Bouquet ingredients in the garage to dry out. I will pick the leaves off of the redtwig dogwood, foreground.

view from inside the garage

The city crew drove by, stopping at each storm drain to clean the leaves out.

Allan’s photo

Allan set up the long tables on sawhorses.  These will be dismantled each night so the van can go back into the garage.  The small card tables in the background can stay up throughout the sorting process.

I laid out newspaper and spray painted some dry eryngiums with purple and blue paint.

spray painting at the end of the bulbs boxes

After a complete change of clothes, I started sorting bulbs.  I like to keep the big door open to get light and air.  It is hard to get my brain in gear for this part of the job.  Before an evening engagement, I managed to at least get the bulbs sorted by kind (big and small narcissi, big and small tulips, alliums, lilies, muscari, and assorted little bulbs).

In the late afternoon, the garden pickings had started to dry out a bit and I made the bouquets.

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Allan’s photo

Because of my determination to finish the bouquets (which turned out to be five), we were a few minutes late to our weekly North Beach Garden Gang dinner at Salt Pub.

This week, we were joined by Teresa of The Planter Box garden centre.

feasting (Allan’s photo)

Our garden club meeting are soothing because none of us has to be “on”, or perky, or talking about anything other than gardening.

Home again, I clustered all the bouquets on one of the inward tables overnight.

Allan’s photo, flowers backed with bulbs

Friday, 20 October 2017

I picked some more light colored flowers to one of the bouquets because it did not have enough pizzazz.

the red rain gauge

the yellow rain gauge

The only photos I got of the bouquets were indoors, with messy garage backgrounds, due to bulb sorting priorities and bad weather.

The one that I improved with more colour.

I later learned that this one raised $60 at the auction to benefit local Hispanic families whose family members have been taken by ICE.

The other bouquets were “bundled” at the auction with piñatas that were filled with local treats and gift certificates from businesses.  I was glad that the flowers helped to raise some money.

One of the local activists who was involved with tonight’s event came to pick them up in the mid afternoon.  She got them all into her little car, amazingly!  We had a half an hour visit before she left, and then I finally got down to some serious bulb sorting. The sorting task ahead of me:

Allan kept me going with snacks and Builders Tea:

Allan’s photo

I did my best, and by 9 PM I had gotten all the tulips large and small sorted, all of the alliums, and most of the little bulbs.

Saturday, 21 October 2017

We had a high wind watch.

I hoped the power would stay on; sorting by flashlights would be difficult.

I had a nice break when Jenna came to visit, wearing her new boots.

Jenna’s nautical new boots (Jenna’s photo)

I sorted for hours.  By 8 PM, I was down to the last of the narcissi and was sorting by dumping bulbs on the floor.  My brain was fried.

A number of friends pool money with me; each wants to spend a certain amount so I have to make each batch of bulbs come to the right amount per person.  This also enables me to get a cool selection of a lot of different bulbs for my garden.

9:30 PM, all sorted, and the work board adjusted to just planting.  Round 2 (much smaller) of sorting will come with the next delivery.

There had been a few short stretches of time when the sun came out today, but mostly the rain went on fiercely.  At 9 o clock, I had seen water coming under the back door of the garage, even though there is a lean to structure enclosing it on the outside.  Allan put towels under the door frame and a shower curtain and tarp over the bulbs in case the garage roof leaked as it sometimes does, a bit.

bulbs tucked in for the night

I expected more rain tomorrow, not as much but enough to spend the day at home typing out proper spread sheets for each recipient from my scrawled lists.  Only I can read my hand written lists because of the abbreviations I use for familiar bulbs.

Calvin and Smoky waiting for me to join them to watch telly. (Scott and Bailey, season three)

Today’s rain:

The top wind gust was 83 mph at Radar Ridge (a high hill to the north of the bridge to Astoria, always gets the biggest gusts).  The gusts howled, the rain came under the door, and yet we kept electrical power all day and evening long, thank goodness.

This had been the most perfect bulb sorting weather.  Other years, nice weather had coincided with bulb arrival, and so I had to sort by night and plant by day, keeping only one batch ahead of the game.  It has been glorious to get round one all sorted at once.

 

 

 

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guest photo

at Sea Star garden, photo by Melissa Van Domelen

at Sea Star garden, photo by Melissa Van Domelen

Friday, 28 October 2016

After falling asleep in the wee hours to the sound of pounding rain, I woke to sunshine and windlessness.  What perfect weather to do the last job of round one of bulbing: the Bolstad beach approach.

the work board this morning

the work board this morning

Long Beach

First we went to the World Kite Museum.  After planting some narcissi there a few days ago, I regretted not having added some tall alliums whose flowers would float along the top of the perennials.  Yesterday afternoon while planting my own bulbs at home, I’d found a package of Allium ‘Purple Sensation’ from which I could spare some for the kite museum.

more bulbs

more bulbs

This time Allan got a photo of the twirly thing he bought one of the other day.

This time Allan got photos of the twirly thing he bought one of the other day.

It twirls effectively.

It twirls effectively on one magnetic disk floating above another. Allan wanted to buy it to enjoy and study as his last store bought whirligig didn’t whirl.

dsc06754

We added three eremurus to the west side of city hall, and Allan started a bit of clean up on the east side.

removing spent hosta foliage, before

removing spent hosta foliage, before

and after (Allan's photos)

and after (Allan’s photos)

On the Bolstad approach, I had 50 cyclamineus narcissi and 150 mixed Crocus tommasinianus (5 colours).  Because we had to weed grasses and sheep sorrel out of all the empty spots where I wanted to add the bulbs, we were there for several hours.  The still air and warm weather (so warm that a summer shirt would have been comfortable) made the job so easy.

dsc08645

Allan pulled old crocosmia.

Allan pulled old crocosmia.

I was pleased to see my new friend the mighty Quinn.

I was pleased to see my new friend the mighty Quinn.

a visitor feeding gulls

a visitor feeding gulls

When I say we are finishing round one of bulbing, I mean that I will probably order another bag of narcissi for the beach approach and maybe two more for the Klipsan Beach Cottage’s A Frame garden at the end of season sales.  Maybe.  And I will certainly succumb to some bulbs for me if I do that.  Today, we had enough bulbs to get from the west end of the beach approach to halfway to the arch.

planting in freshly weeded areas

planting in freshly weeded areas

I also threw down lots of little poppy seedheads gleaned earlier this year from the boatyard garden.

I also threw down lots of little poppy seedheads gleaned earlier this year from the boatyard garden.

bulbs added this far...

bulbs added this far…

with this far to go if I get more

with this far to go if I get more

Round two will at the very least include planting tulips that I am holding for four downtown planters that are going to be dug into for electrical work sometime between now and Christmas.

We did not take time to weed all of the areas where roses are too thick for bulb planting.

We did not have time to weed all of the areas where roses are too thick for bulb planting.

I don’t think it is cost effective to a thorough weeding of the approach garden at this time of year.  The weeds will be back in March, and I don’t think a bit of weediness will bother passersy here over the winter.

When we dumped our debris at City Works, I saw that the hanging baskets, at rest on the ground, are still blooming.

the last gasp of the Basket Case baskets

the last gasp of the Basket Case baskets

At home, I finished planting my bulbs.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan painting the iron fence

Allan painting the iron fence

At dusk, I took some photos of what is still amazingly in bloom in the garden.

penstemon

penstemon

Nicotiana langsdorfii

Nicotiana langsdorfii

Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm' (from Our Kathleen)

Rudbeckia ‘Goldsturm’ (from Our Kathleen) and Geranium ‘Rozanne’

sanvitalia

sanvitalia

begonias

begonias

agastache

agastache

Salvia 'Wendy's Wish'

Salvia ‘Wendy’s Wish’

trailing rosemary

trailing rosemary

lavender

lavender

Helianthus 'Gold Lace'

Helianthus ‘Gold Lace’

big pots of Hot Lips salvia

big pots of Hot Lips salvia

assorted hardy fuchsias

assorted hardy fuchsias

yellow spires of verbascum

yellow spires of verbascum

Ceanothus 'Dark Star'

Ceanothus ‘Dark Star’

Rose 'Nearly Wild'

Rose ‘Nearly Wild’

Eupatorium 'Chocolate'

Eupatorium ‘Chocolate’

Persicaria 'Firetail'

Persicaria ‘Firetail’

Clematis 'Freckles'

Clematis ‘Freckles’

calendula

calendula

Tetrapanax 'Steroidal Giant' buds

Tetrapanax ‘Steroidal Giant’ buds

hellebore

hellebore

cosmos

cosmos

chrysanthemum

chrysanthemum

fuchsia

fuchsia

schizostylis

schizostylis

one last poppy

one last poppy

and more:

Geranium 'Rozanne'

Geranium ‘Rozanne’

hips of Rosa moyesii

hips of Rosa moyesii

Callicarpa (beauty berry)

Callicarpa (beauty berry)

'Dortmund' rose hips

‘Dortmund’ rose hips

Skooter and begonias

Skooter and begonias

And now the work board looks like this:

dsc06803

The next pressing work task is to get the salvageable plants dug up and stored from Diane’s roadside garden.  More importantly, Ilwaco Halloween is almost here and we have some decorating to do.


ginger 1995 (age 71):

Oct 28: Noon-5:45  I did it!  I closed the garden water faucets!  It wasn’t as hard as Bruce said it was.  After I dug all the soil and rocks out there it was a regular faucet handle to turn off.  I did 3 with one to go.  Also I wrapped the shop pipes with the heat thing.

1997 (age 73):

Oct 28: Store day—PO, Tim’s, and QFC.   I worked  all afternoon planting bulbs and some perennials (mail order).  Got a lot done.  Then I moved all but one tray from shop to picnic table.

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Wednesday, 26 October 2016

I woke to such intense wind and rain that I was sure Melissa and Dave would not be working two doors down on the hedge trimming project.  But when I looked out my window, there they were.  I went over to record their perseverance and fortitude.

Neither wind nor rain keeps Sea Star Gardening from its rounds.

Neither wind nor rain keeps Sea Star Gardening from its rounds.

over the gate, gale warning flags at the port

over the gate, gale warning flags at the port

warning flags flown at the port office

warning flags flown at the port office

Mel tarping debris while Dave uses hedge shears for the final cut.

Mel tarping debris while Dave uses hedge shears for the final cut.

I warned Mel about the spear effect of falling branches from the alder grove.

I warned Mel about the spear effect of falling branches from the alder grove.

The trees made a huge wind noise.

The trees made a huge wind noise.

leaning in

leaning in

a second tarp

a second tarp

I posted a video here with the sound of the wind and the sight of the hedge whipping about.  At least it did not rain on our friends.

This wind record is from a weather station over on Sandridge Road; it was probably 10 mph stronger here:

img_7407

Melissa said that she was experiencing Ilwaco weather.  I often complain that it is so windy here when in their sheltered garden way up in Oysterville, the wind is minimal.

I left them to their task and went home to spend my day indoors doing all the bulb spreadsheets.

Calvin and Skooter

Calvin and Skooter face off over the cat door. (A squabble did not ensue.)

Smokey supervising.

Smokey supervising.

my Smokey

my Smokey

Skooter

Skooter

Meanwhile, Allan painted.  He said that any stray drop of paint blew away, sometimes onto the green paint of the gates, which then had to be wiped off with paint thinner because he was using an oil based paint.

painting the back arbor

painting the back arbor

Allan's photos: before

Allan’s photos: before

and after

and after

before

before

and after

and after

It was all his idea to paint the posts black, and it turned out beautifully.

My view at 6:11 PM

My view at 6:11 PM

I finished the spreadsheets just in time for us to depart to have dinner with Dave and Mel at

The Depot Restaurant.

This was a bonus dinner rather than our weekly meeting.  We like to go sometimes to Wednesday “Burger Night”, an offseason treat offered by the Depot.

You choose from many ingredients.

You choose from many ingredients.

If you get a fried egg and pineapple, you can deconstruct the burger and have the egg as an appetizer and the pineapple as dessert.

view from our table

view from our table

a well filled burger

a well filled burger

vanilla bean flan

vanilla bean flan

chocolate espresso pot de creme

chocolate espresso pot de creme

sorbet duo: Cranberry and Pineapple

sorbet duo: Cranberry and Pineapple

Tomorrow, I am determined to get back to bulbing, rain or shine.


ginger

1995 (age 71):

Oct 26: 1:30-5:30  I fell again from the little extra step of back porch.  Messed up my knee.  I started to weed asparagus/strawberry bed.  Ended up pulling up the berry plants and trimming them.  They need replanting now—maybe tomorrow.

1998 (age 74):

Oct 26:  10:30-3:30  SUNNY & WARM  I planted more bulbs in UDFB, PRFB-S and Tam.  Then the perennial order from Parks arrived so I potted them.  I picked up apples then got the recycle and garbage.  Then I came in and peeled two pails of apples.  I may can the applesauce tomorrow.  I quit working at 9:30.

 

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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.

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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.

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Wooden cranberry boxes are used for shelving.

Wooden cranberry boxes are used for shelving.

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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

Ilwaco

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.

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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.

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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.


ginger

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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guest photo:

Here are the coral bark maples at Steve and John’s bayside garden this week.  The path has been remade by local landscaper Steve Clarke.  It was a simple cedar chip path now transformed into something elegant.

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photo by Steve McCormick

Monday 24 October 2016

Gusty wind and heavy rain promised me a day at home.  What I really want is a rainy day to read right through the third Nella Last book (Nella Last in the 1950s) that arrived a few days ago. I cannot have a full reading day till this fall’s bulb lists are transformed from my messy handwriting to a tidy typed grid. Yet today, I did procrastinate on bulb spreadsheets after getting an email from the library announcing that the book I have been trying to finish is overdue.  So I finished it.

an excellent book

an excellent book

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In the descriptions of food traditions brought from the old world, I was saddened to learn that the Irish, because they were fleeing from the potato famine after decades of deprivation under English rule, had few special recipes or food traditions.

Meanwhile, Allan reclaimed the paper bags which had been used for bulb sorting.  I reuse them year after year after year, letting one go only if it gets wet from a rainy day of planting.

sorted and unsorted bags

sorted and unsorted bags

years worth of my labeling with sharpie and scrawled bulb name abbreviations

years worth of my labeling with sharpie and scrawled bulb name abbreviations

Just last fall, Allan started a new plan of crossing out the old names so the bags are ready to go for autumn 2017.

Just last fall, Allan started a new plan of crossing out the old names so the bags are ready to go for autumn 2017.

all nicey nice

all nicey nice

Any small paper bag that enters the house gets saved for bulb sorting.

While I continued to read, Allan walked to the post office and the library.

autumn leaves in the library garden

autumn leaves in the library garden

library nasturtiums still blooming

library nasturtiums still blooming

On the way home, he noticed a bird nest under the awning of the old (now empty) bingo hall.

a hidden nest

a hidden nest

swallows home

swallows’ home

I finished my book and just as I got my first blank spreadsheet open, out came the sunshine.  We simply had to go plant another batch of bulbs.

work board this morning

work board this morning

Geranium 'Rozanne' and rudbeckia and penstemons still blooming by our driveway.

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ and rudbeckia and penstemons still blooming by our driveway.

Geranium 'Rozanne' and calendula

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ and calendula

heading north out of Ilwaco in clear but breezy weather

heading north out of Ilwaco in clear but breezy weather

stormy sky in Long Beach

stormy sky in Long Beach

We began by planting a few bulbs at Long Beach city hall.

Allan added one clump of narcissi to the little pop out a block north of City Hall.

Allan added one clump of Narcissi ‘Thalia Sun’ to the little pop out a block north of City Hall.

We then went on to

The Anchorage Cottages

My good friend Mitzu's greeting

My good friend Mitzu’s greeting

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Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

The wind was rather annoying.

The wind was rather annoying.

Anchorage office

Anchorage office

looking east over pampas grass and cryptomerias

looking east over pampas grass and cryptomerias

windy!

windy!

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Gusty enough to be bothersome.

Gusty enough to be bothersome.

We planted some narcissi at ground level and some tulips in assorted planters.

I drop the bags where I want the bulbs to be planted. That way if a rbig ain comes, they can be gathered back up quickly.

I drop the bags where I want the bulbs to be planted. That way if a big rain comes, they can be gathered back up quickly.

Fuchsia magellanica 'Hawkshead'

Fuchsia magellanica ‘Hawkshead’

'Hawkshead' fuchsia, white with green tips

‘Hawkshead’ fuchsia, white with green tips

hardy fuchsia and dried astilbe flowers, which I like to leave up for winter

hardy fuchsia and dried astilbe flowers, which I like to leave up for winter

At my request, Beth had built two sets of window boxes so that we can change them out for winter and summer.  That way, I can have boxes of early spring bulbs that don’t need to be disturbed by the planting of summer annuals.  This year, we switched from plastic liners to larger wooden boxes so last year’s bulbs do need to be replanted and some new ones added.

two of the four summer windowboxes

two of the four summer windowboxes

Because of the wind and the threat of rain, we took the plastic liners and the four new, empty wooden window boxes home to plant up in the comfort of our garage.

on the way home

On the way, a quick stop at The Depot accomplished the planting of an azalea that had been a gift at Marilyn’s memorial service.

memorial azalea (Allan's photo)

memorial azalea (Allan’s photo)

I tucked the wee azalea in at the end of the garden and I hope it is not a tender sort.

I tucked the wee azalea in at the end of the garden and I hope it is not a tender sort.

You may have made the connection that Marilyn, our beloved elderly client who died this summer, was the mother of Nancy, co owner of the Depot Restaurant.  Like Jo’s garden, Marilyn’s garden up in Surfside is about to pass to the care of new owners.

The Oceanside Animal Clinic is located just east of the Depot; we picked up flea drops for the kitties.

veterinarian office staff (Allan's photo)

veterinarian office staff (Allan’s photo)

at home

In the garage, ready to transfer bulbs from plastic liners to the new boxes

In the garage, ready to transfer bulbs from plastic liners to the new boxes

I had four out of eight liners emptied and bulbs replanted in two wooden boxes when I realized the new boxes did not have drainage holes.

Allan to the rescue!

Allan to the rescue!  I shifted the planting to the empty boxes after they got drilled.

He went back to the project I had fetched him from: mowing the pocket sized lawn at the J’s house across the street.

J's lawn, done

J’s lawn, done

boxes, done and ready to go back to The Anchorage

boxes, chock full o’ little spring bulbs and ready to go back to The Anchorage

Now the window boxes of bulbs will not have to be changed out till two or three years from now when the bulbs multiply to the point of overcrowding.

Down the street, Allan noticed a nautical sight: nets over the sidewalk.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Tomorrow, I might get those spreadsheets done; if not, we will get three more smaller batches of bulbs planted.

the work board waning, and waxing as I remember more to do (like plant my own bulbs)

the work board waning, and waxing as I remember more to do (like plant my own bulbs)


ginger

1997 (age 73):

Oct 24:  12:30-4:00 FIRST HARD FREEZE!  It didn’t look like much froze but when I was planting bulbs in the tam area I saw the leaves and stalks were frozen while some of the blooms were ok.  I cut back those dahlias that had no blossoms.  I planted about 100 bulbs in PRFB, Tam and PBB.  [Patio Right Flower Bed and Patio Back Bed, I bet!  The patio was surrounded on three sided by a railroad tie wall about three ties high, with the other side being the house.]  I have about 100 more to go in the ground and lots of various bulbs for my pots, etc.

1998 (age 74):

Oct 24:  Rainy and cool.  I spent all day in the kitchen taking care of ripe tomatoes (one pkg frozen), peeling apples (2 trays drying) and dehydrating potatoes.  I received the instructions and I peeled and filled 4 trays of the spuds I bought a couple of weeks ago at QFC.  It will be interesting to see how they turn out.  I was surprised to learn the spuds had to be blanched before drying them.

 

 

 

 

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