Posts Tagged ‘Cutting Back’

Thursday, 25 May 2017

With the big tourist crowds of Memorial Day weekend and the local extravaganza of “The World’s Longest Garage Sale” (from Chinook to Oysterville), we had to get the port looking fine.

This involved some planting as well as weeding.


post office garden


me talking with Betsy, director of the museum, taken from behind the Stipa gigantea


I could not find the sunflower seeds I wanted to plant at the back.  Added more cosmos.

Then we drove a couple of blocks to the port to start weeding and adding a few plants to the curbside gardens.


Looking east. We would do the east end if we had time later in the day.


looking west


The marina is across the parking lot. (Allan’s photo)


I got to pet this doggie. (Allan’s photo)


a good butt scritching


Pleased to see most of the Eryngiums are budding this year. (Some years, some of them don’t.)


my favourite bed. Thinking I should get a yellow helianthemum to balance the orange one.


Helianthemum’s only flaw is a short season of bloom.


Drive over garden still rather flattened. Lucky the alliums did not get driven over. Would look better with more soil, as the soil is compressed by tires.


north of the port office

We found time to pull most of the noxious weed, Geranium robertianum (Stinking Bob) from the south side of Purly Shell Fiber Arts; shop owner Heather emerged and helped, which I appreciated so much.


Stinking Bob would take over the whole port. It went in the garbage can. The pelican is from Basket Case Greenhouse.


at Time Enough Books, looking west


Bookseller Karla says the ceanothus is causing a sensation.


Allan’s photo  OleBob’s café is named for two friends, Ole and Bob.

Karla had recently given  me the wonderful book, Cutting Back. I told her about the author’s encounter with Joan Baez while pruning an old ceanothus.


perfect book

Leslie was pruning at a retreat when Joan Baez emerged.



Karla will order the book for you if you want to read more.  Meanwhile, the UPS truck  delivered a new t shirt with Ilwaco’s longitude and latitude on display.



on the left: a must read for me; I am not very good at growing cutting flowers.


figuring out where to plant


weeding the bookstore landscape (Allan’s photos)



Karen Boardman from Ocean Park stops to give us words of admiration for all our gardens.

After the planting of the garden boat and some curbside plants at Time Enough, Allan went to string trim and weed a bit down by Ilwaco Freedom Market while I backtracked to weed the curbside at Powell Gallery.


With my knee brace on, I was able to walk on this river rock bed that I have lately had to delegate to Allan.


velvet grass in a California poppy at Salt (Allan’s photo)


Allan’s string trimming

It seemed we now had time to loop around to the east end curbside beds.  But driving down Lake Street, I realized we hadn’t checked Mike’s garden for a couple of weeks.  We hoped to find nothing to do there. Of course, there was some weeding, deadheading, and path raking.


path caked with cherry blossoms (Allan’s photo)


Mike’s raked path

Then on to weed some of the beds from Elizabeth Avenue to the Ilwaco Pavilion.


Looking west from Elizabeth


just across the parking lot (Allan’s photo)

I must confess that we skipped over three xeriscape (lava rock, river rock, and bark) gardens that we do not plant up.  We still had the whole boatyard to do and only today for Ilwaco.

After weeding at the old Shorebank building, we stopped at Salt to check on a santolina that Allan thought was not worth saving.  He was right.


by Ilwaco Freedom Market


We skipped weeding the last two beds. I hope the dog daises will dazzle people (those who don’t know it’s sort of a noxious weed) and distract from weedy grasses.


The curbs had been painted all along the port. (Allan’s photo)


columbine reseeded into the Salt river rock bed, which has soil covered with landscape fabric under the rock (not our doing!) (Allan’s photo)


Salt had a new and attractive smoker.  Wish I had gotten the whole sign…was tired.


making brisket, smelled delicious


Allan’s photo

Next, the boatyard.


Our friend, former LB city manager Gene Miles stopped by to talk about bonsai.

Allan left me at the boatyard with wheelbarrow and cosmos and went off to hook up the water trailer and water the street trees and planters.  I was mighty tired.  While getting plants out of the van, I found a bag of seeds that had gotten soaking wet…My fault. My proposed kitchen garden of red runner beans and some greens. I would have to plant them as soon as I got home.


Allan’s photo. He had been cultivating a garden of poppies under the red sign. Someone had string trimmed it flat.

Allan’s photos in town:


more digging in the corners of the tree beds. What is up with this??? This one has a perennial sweet pea.


one of the Ilwaco city hall planters; we can plant more delicate plants there because the office staff waters.

Parts of the boatyard garden were so hard and gravelly I could not hammer any cosmos into them.  We simply MUST mulch this whole garden next fall.  I had not realized it had gotten so low in spots.


7 PM….I had come this far…


and had this far to go including the long strip beyond the gate.

Being on hour nine of work was just about beyond me.


The garden had a haze of horsetail again.


so much to do

I skipped that center section as Allan arrived; it takes him an hour and three quarters to water the Ilwaco planters.  He set to weeding the section above and I went on with cosmos to the end.  My mood was dire as I had to accept that the boatyard would be far from perfect for the holidays.  The only comfort is it looks fairly good driving by, not so good to critical walkers-by.


weeds and plants in the boatyard garden (Allan’s photo)


cosmos seedling, watered with a dipper, and sluggo (Allan’s photo). My thought: poor little things.


Allan’s photo

I have been trying to be chipper and say Annuals Planting “Time” instead of “Hell”, but today was most definitely planting hell.  The last minutes were cheered  by two passing young fishermen, one of whom commented that they enjoy the gardens and that “Gardening is hard work!” I said, “Not as hard as The Deadliest Catch!” And he said, “That’s not so hard; it’s all done by hydraulics!”

Sometimes I wish there could be some signage explaining that all the public flower gardens (not the lawns) in Long Beach and Ilwaco are done by just two people, so have mercy with the imperfection.


geese seen while dumping weeds (Allan’s photos)


Erasing quite  a bit off the work board was not as cheering as usual.  I really had so much wanted to achieve perfection.  Once upon a time, when I was up to working seven days a week, ten hours a day at this time of year, we could achieve perfection before the holiday weekends.  Maybe we could have if we were not combining weeding with planting.

Of course, I had no oomph left to plant the veg seeds that had gotten wet.  I put them on a plate with a wet paper towel to keep them damp till our Saturday off.


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