Posts Tagged ‘Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’’

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Before we got started, the mum of our friend Thandi came to visit the garden.  (As we have with many of our friends, we had told her to tour it anytime as long as she closes the deer gates.)




alliums and santolina in the back garden

The Depot Restaurant…

…got the usual watering and grooming.


Dierama (angel’s fishing rod) in bloom


Allan’s photo




assorted eryngiums


Allan’s photo


north side of dining deck

Red Barn Arena



Allan’s photo


Misty was at the barn today…


…with Holly and Diane (Allan’s photo)

In the barrels, even the red diascia have almost dried up.


sad diascias, a plant I usually think of as pretty tough


I cut them way back.

Even though the red diascia were by request, I swear that next year I am going to go all ultra-drought tolerant in those barrels.  Small red sedums and sempervivums around the edges would be a good solution.

Diane’s garden


between Diane’s and the Red Barn (Allan’s photo)


Diane’s garden


a belly rub was insisted upon

The Basket Case Greenhouse

We made a quick stop on the way north to pick up some blue “Korean agastache” that Roxanne had grown from seed (and a few other impulse buys, of course, including a gold leafed four o clock called ‘Limelight’).


still lots of choices in the annuals house


Look who stopped to say hi.  (Allan’s photo)

On the way further north to Klipsan Beach, we delivered a life jacket to J9, who is planning to go boating with a friend this weekend.


J9’s place


J9 made a planter out of this old crab pot.

Of course, we then had to drive by Ed Strange’s place on the way back to the highway and were fortunate to find him home.

touring Ed’s Garden


Ed’s place


He is slowly landscaping the neighbours’ front garden, as well.


gold and more gold by the dog run

Awhile ago, Ed ran a culvert pipe along the road, thus being able to expand the front edge of the garden into what used to be a bank of salal and a ditch.  You can see the salal in this old photo:




same area today





My good friend Jackson Strange (He’s a Springer Spaniel.)


Allan’s photo



front porch


fancy pelargoniums


Ed’s east facing porch and deck


I had delphinium envy.  Maybe I could grow them in a pot.



On the deck; he’s had this cactus for 46 years.


view east from the deck.  The old single wide next door is going to be demolished soon.

Ed waters his handsome clump of gunnera for an hour a day, he says, and mulches it heavily.


Allan’s photo


The round grey “pavers” are Sedum ‘Cape Blanco’


by the garage


Note the gunnera on this painting.


hebe in the back garden


Ed’s enviable hostas

Ed agreed to be the one who will dig up and take away my sad tattered hostas and give them a better life.

We had a tour of Ed’s home.  My home would never be tidy like this if someone dropped by.


vintage light fixture and stained glass inset


his grandma’s pug

Then we all had to get back to work.

Klipsan Beach Cottages

We weeded and tidied.  The garden had held up well since last week.  In gardens like this one, where we can count on not having to water, we get a lot more actual gardening done.


It suddenly felt quite hot out.  (About 70 F)



Persicaria ‘Golden Arrow’


One of Mary’s glorious rose bushes


sit spot with Tetrapanax ‘Steroidal Giant’


Allan’s photo


Echinops (blue globe thistle)


Allan noticed them, too.


another healthy rose


I wish I knew the names of all the roses Mary has.

Deadheading Rose ‘Bow Bells’ (Allan’s photos):





We headed all the way back to Ilwaco for our last job of a pleasantly easy day.


Allan shopped at Sid’s Supermarket on the way (his photo)

Port of Ilwaco

We watered 9 of the curbside gardens, some long, and some just little pockets.


Looking west on Howerton from the port office

I had an unnerving experience while watering the Time Enough Books garden.  A baby bird hopped out onto the street, followed by its anxious mother.



The mother cheeped frantically.

The baby went further out into the street.  The mother played “I have a broken wing!”  I tried to stop traffic but had to back up…in the street!…because a woman just would not stop.  Finally she did…on top of the baby bird, which I could no longer see.  When she finally asked what was wrong, and I said there was a baby bird under her car, she asked what to do, and I told her I really had no idea.  (I could not get down and crawl under the car plus I did not trust her not to move.)  Thank all creation that when she drove on, the bird was fine.  I gently boosted it back up into the garden while the mother made another dramatic broken wing pantomime.


The parents continued to keep a close eye on me.


There’s a baby bird somewhere in the garden.

Allan’s photos:


Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’


parsley, poppy, toadflax

Tomorrow: Back to the watering rounds in Long Beach and Ilwaco.

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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.


We’ve been watching this front garden appear.


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


well cut and fitted rocks (Allan’s photo)


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


established bed on south wall of the house


south wall garden


the joy of garden touring


Acer palmatum ‘Shishigashira’


south wall sit spot


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


One of Karen’s artful containers


and another


more container combos


containers and ingredients (new plants)


stacked blue pots


Allan’s photo

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


a mosaiced step up


Allan’s photo


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


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo


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


in the back garden

DSC00962 (1).jpg



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


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


Allan’s photo


detail and textures


astilbes (love them)


blue hydrangea


Hedge is on the north side.


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.


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


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


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!

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Friday, 30 June 2017

We had today to get the boatyard garden weeded for tomorrow’s Port of Ilwaco fireworks display crowd….and the beach approach, for the Fourth of July holiday weekend.  I did want very much want Saturday and Sunday off.

I began in my own garden by picking a bouquet for Salt Hotel’s holiday weekend.




Astilbes are good in bouquets…



…and I have lots of astilbes right now.



‘Sugar Shack’ continues to come back after being given up for dead!


Nicotiana ‘Fragrant Cloud’ lives up to its name.

I am going to plant MORE Nicotiana ‘Fragrant Cloud’ next year, and I would very much like to find Nicotiana sylvestris ‘Only the Lonely’, as well. (I’d rather be able to buy a flat of it than buy just one on mail order.)  Annie’s Annuals says this one self sows!


yellow hearts of Lamprocapnos scandens


Clematis ‘Etoile Violette’


post office garden


delivering bouquet to Salt (mostly astilbes and sanguisorba)

Ilwaco Boatyard garden

Our first project was to finish weeding the boatyard garden…not to absolute perfection, but as close to it as we could get.


In three hours, we finished it!


a boat on the move (Allan’s photos)



Before moving on ourselves, I decided to walk the length of the garden, south to north, for a photographic record.



Halmiocistus wintonensis


Geranium ‘Rozanne’




an unfortunately unclipped santolina (which is why we clip them)



Catananche (Cupid’s Dart)



mysteriously empty area (plant jacking?)


Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’


finger blight


Allan noticed it, too.


sweet pea (Allan’s photo)


clipped santolina


past the gate




Cistus (the one remaining of several)



I love the way fallen ceanothus flowers look like a crushed glass mulch.


Deer are not eating the lilies so will plant more.


Echinops (blue globe thistle)



A lot of the pink sidalcia clump had been broken or picked.


Persicaria ‘Firetail’




This spot was also mysteriously empty…filled in now with some cosmos and (disappointing) painted sage


a daisy from a start from Jo’s garden


Helenium ‘Sahin’s Early Flowerer’



a running perennial sunflower from a start from Andersen’s RV Park




looking south from the north end

We took a short break at home…


Skooter in the garden (Allan’s photo)

before heading to…

Long Beach

We had about five sections left to weed on the Bolstad beach approach.



Allan manually jug watering one planter (the only way to water out here)

All but 6 of the remaining photos today are Allan’s.


birds foot trefoil and vetch swamping the roses










before (well, during)


Rugosa rose and Sweet William


filmy white vetch, not even pretty like the purple one


happy tourists (telephoto) taking the obligatory arch photo





We got through all the remaining sections of the approach garden.


rolling out the debris at city works

We just got done in time to have the weekend off and to meet Dave and Melissa and Todd for Friday night dinner at

The Cove Restaurant


Sondra’s cat by the parking lot


North Beach Garden Gang arrives


in the foyer


perusing the tempting menu


Sondra’s dog Lacey out on the golf course


clams for Melissa


lemon caper pasta for me


noodle bowl and harvest salad


Todd and Dave tuck in


a dessert shared by all

We stayed till we were by far the last table and the vacuum cleaner was about to come out, the hint that it is time for us to go home.

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Thursday, 29 June 2017

Our plan to finish the port on Friday suddenly got changed when I saw an ad in the paper last night that Ilwaco Freedom Market was holding a BBQ in their parking lot on Friday.  Their strip of bark/would-be garden would have to be done Thursday, along with the curbside garden in front of their store.  I wondered if this would change up our schedule so much that we’d have to work on Saturday…

Port of Ilwaco

In this infrequently watered garden, the recent hot day and the wind had crisped up some of the dog daisies.







Some daisies were good enough to stay through the holiday weekend.

The curbside garden got a good watering, as did the garden next door at Salt.



Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’

Allan had the terribly boring part of the job (his photos follow): Running the string trimmer along the sidewalk to the marina:


and the tedium of weeds in a barkscape with tatty landscape fabric (which we are slowly removing; obviously it does not prevent weeds).



I hope that we can create more joy in this bed by next year.

On the way out of town, even though we were feeling time pressure, we circled round the block to deal with this in a tree garden (Allan’s photos):



Fortunately, the sign-putter did not get mad about being told it just could not be in the tree bed, no matter how gently placed.


It’s not even a great patch of garden….However, the sign sets a bad precedent for future damage.

Long Beach

We checked on and did not feel the need for any work at the welcome sign.



The Fun Rides have now moved into a parking lot area near the center parking lot berm.  We felt the need to at least string trim said berm.  Allan dropped me off at Veterans Field to weed and took time for a bit of strimming there.

Before: a rough edge had been left.


meadowy look around the anchor

flag pavilion garden: am thrilled Salvia patens came back

Salvia ‘Hot Lips’ and Salvia patens

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’

I think Sapphire Blue reseeded itself into plain old eryngium, left  ??maybe

Meanwhile, Allan faced the tedium of the boring and never watered center berm:

a string trimmer job, with some dandelion pulling

He found a dirty diaper as well as weeds. Unfortunately, used diapers are not an unusual find in the parking lot area.

I started the watering round earlier than Allan did so was able to do four blocks of planters to his two.  My walkaround:

I realized that the theme of most of my planters IS the meadow look.

cosmos and California poppies

Today, I had the hard task of carrying bucket water to the four Fish Alley planters…a long walk to the back end. I sometimes think this is the hill I will die on.

It was windy…again.

Basket Case basket

I am very disappointed in the Salvia viridis, painted sage, this year.  They are supposed to look like this:

pink dahlia, pink painted sage

But this year and last year they have been disappointing.  Everywhere I’ve planted them this year, they are just putting out one small disappointing bract on the top:

The bract (colored leaf) is the showy part and should be all down the stem! Why is this happening?


If these plants don’t shape up, I am going to go off them and not use them next year.  For so many years they have been the most asked about plant (many times per each summer watering session) in the planters.  Last year, when they were also dull, no one asked about them at all.

Allan’s watering walk around:

????? What have we here?

nice round lavender

a crab shell deposited in a planter

Cosmos and California poppies

So he saw this woman with a hat clearly decorated with planter flowers (Cosmos and Geranium ‘Rozanne’ and California poppy).  She told him her two year old had picked them, and she was perfectly happy to have her photo taken.

In other unrelated news, a local realtor told Allan that she had seen a woman picking a bouquet from under the trees.  When the realtor suggested the woman not do that, the woman (not the woman in the hat) kept picking, saying she “had permission”, which the realtor doubted.  Allan assured her that permission had not been given by us.

In better news, he saw someone taking photos of the flowers, as it should be.

We finished Long Beach by weeding in Fifth Street Park.  It is taking a long time to get interesting.

slow to be colorful; we are not allowed to let much of the garden be taller than the fence.

I cut off the spent stalks of Camassias.

Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’ and cerinthe (Allan’s photo)

Port of Ilwaco again

More watering of the Howerton curbside gardens was essential.  Allan started east of the Pavilion while I watered and weeded by the Nisbett Gallery, port office, Time Enough Books…

Coast Guard helicopter overhead (Allan’s photo)

Someone had braided a grass by Loading Dock Village. Allan thought a clever student from the driving school did it while waiting.  (Allan’s photo)

Eryngium and santolina (Allan’s photo)

Eryngium and yarrow (Allan’s photo)

Port office south side…which the office staff waters.

the marina

In the curbside gardens, I have found eremerus (foxtail lily) to be a big disappointment.  They just mostly dry up like this one:

in the center, all dried up and no flower

And only one looks like it should, so I may have to give up on planting them:

beautiful tall spikes of the one happy Eremurus

port office curbside

Artist Don Nisbett told me he’d given this little bed 11 gallons of water on the recent 90 degree day.  Thank you, friend!

I spent a lot of time grooming the dead flowers off of the sea thrift.

example: before


Allan caught up to me and dropped off the trailer at the boatyard, went home and hooked up the water trailer, and came back to help me finish watering at Time Enough.

veronica at Time Enough

Time Enough garden boat

Purly Shell yarn shop shares the Time Enough building.

I felt a strong desire to have a nice dinner at Salt Pub.  Not tonight.

Allan still had to water the Ilwaco trees and planters.  At 7:30, he dropped me off at the boatyard to weed.

I walked down to the north end to begin.  There, the weeds were the worst with lots of tall velvet grass.

taken while Allan watered planters at the boatyard intersection

a trio on a walk (Allan’s photo shows two out of three dogs)

8:15 PM

I was thrilled to find some sweet peas, planted from seed, prevailing against the horsetail.

tree garden watering where the sign had been (Allan’s photo). I do not like that wild sweet pea in there. He does.


boatyard: I had got this far by 8:50 PM.

I was getting close to the stretch that had been partly weeded earlier this week.

I have planted a few lilies in the boatyard to test if deer will eat them. I think a human picked some of the flowers off this one.

I love heleniums.

8:55 PM

I started to wonder when Allan would show up, as the song lyrics “Gettin’ dark, too dark to see…” ran through my mind.  I pictured slowly pushing my wheelbarrow home in the dark.  The odd thing was I still had loads of energy and could have weeded for another two hours (by headlamp?), thanks in part to my Unloader knee brace.

At last Allan drove up to the trailer at the other end of the boatyard.

what I got done

The whole stretch has to be weeded reasonably well by Saturday.

It was 9:30 at home before the trailer was unhitched and parked.  Allan saw this disturbing sight on the roof next door:

Not good news. Raccoons severely damaged the shake roof on my old house…

They are bold and unafraid.

I didn’t know I still had it in me to do a ten hour day and was well chuffed.




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Thursday, 22 June 2017

I’ll get my initial 25 mph wind complaint out of the way right here at the beginning, and get back to more fervent complaining at the end.

First, a watering of all the container plants at home.  I still don’t have the patio area tidied and arranged and it is almost July!


As we drove off to work, we saw that Dave and Melissa were working on a former garden we had created several years ago.  We quit because of…reasons.  I wouldn’t say it bothered me to see that garden fill with weeds; however, for the sake of the remaining good plants, I was glad to see them working on it.


Sea Star Gardening doing a great job releasing plants from weedy smothering.

Long Beach

We weeded and tidied at the welcome sign and made sure the water was on, because the temperature for this weekend is predicted to be 90 degrees.  (I’m going to complain about that for sure.)


Welcome sign…seems lacking without the high maintenance Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’ that I decided to forgo this year. Also, no one had echibeckia available. Agastache ‘Summer Glow’ is not making a good background show at all.


I hope the cosmos get taller soon.  Must remind self many plants have been slowed this year by cold weather.

Despite the wind, our next project was to start a methodical end to end weeding of the beach approach.  We’ve been jumping around to the sections that need mulch the most.  Today, I did not think we had time to get mulch from the works yard, so weeding took priority. (All Allan’s photos:)


starting at the west end



sand and clover


These big flat yellow clovers are satisfying to pull because they come out easily on one main stems and clear a big area when gone.  (Allan’s photo)


After: We got two out of 12.5  sections done, with probably another whole section or more done earlier this week in mulched areas further on.  Only took 1 1/2 of hours for two sections, compared to about 3 hours (meaning 6 with two people) per section on the initial spring weeding. (Allan’s photo)

My goal is to get through the whole garden by July 4th and then to do the complete mulching of all low and/or open areas by mid July’s Sandsations event.  The garden will be a little wild but will, I hope, not have tall weed grasses or vetch all through the roses.






We usually eat lunch by holding a peanut butter sandwich with one hand and taking bites while weeding with another hand.  Often I forget to eat lunch at all. Today we rewarded ourselves for our good work with a Pink Poppy Bakery treat and coffee at Abbracci Coffee Bar by Fifth Street Park (east side).


In the words of Madeline of Pink Poppy Bakery: “It may look plain but don’t judge a bundt by it’s cover! Pecan brown sugar pound cake will remind you of Grandma’s kitchen.”


In Abbracci Coffee Bar

Next, we weeded in Fifth Street Park.


I had petted this friendly little doggie named Woo Woo.


Allan weeded an annoying scrim of horsetail.


Allan used the string trimmer to clear this area that goes behind the restroom.

Someone years ago planted “dwarf” pampas grass on the L shaped “behind the restroom” area.  It is infested with weeds. I made it clear a few years back that it was no longer our problem.  In my opinion, it needs to be totally removed…by someone younger and stronger.


Woo Woo and her guy having lunch from Captain Bob’s Chowder. (Allan’s photo)


Northwest corner before weeding horsetail and trimming stems that had gone cattywampus in the wind. Forgot to take an after.

With the park pretty thoroughly weeded, we set out on our watering walkabout.  I went north and Allan went south on Pacific Way (the main street).

Allan’s photos:



starting at the carousel

I’m amazed that allium has not been bothered.  If they would remain unbothered, I would plant a lot more of them in the planters.  In previous years, they did not last more than a few days before being plucked.





yellow bidens


the recently re-done southernmost planter



ending across the street from the carousel

my photos:


In Fifth Street park, east side: Eryngium and starry Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’.  The latter is starting to make up for its rampant, floppy foliage.

A young woman tourist stood by this Basket Case Greenhouse basket….


and said “This is just what my baskets look like at home…” and then laughed and added, “Not so much!”  I could have said “You can get one just like that at the Basket Case on Sandridge for $29.99!”


Looking across the street, I thought the Stormin’ Norman planter looked great…..


…with lots of red to tone with the building.

When I got there at the end of my rounds, I found it full of chickweed and fireweed and the dangnable ornamental wire plant that we have tried to eliminate.


Agastache ‘Cotton Candy’


Dianthus ‘Charles Musgrave’


Dianthus ‘Charles Musgrave’

Because I was all out of photos for the NIVA green Facebook page, I stopped in there to take some.


NIVA green


I peeked into the plant section at Dennis Company and saw this list of deer resistant plants.


I have found they do eat Astilbe and Gaura, and I am sorry, but this needs a spell check.


I walked around all the planters and street tree gardens and groomed them (especially the deadheading of the older and larger Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’, most of which are rocking back and forth a bit after the recent windstorm).  The wind was horrible…so cold, and so strong it was like a bully almost knocking me over at times.


a business’s planter on First Avenue


First Avenue window



Allan watered and fertilized all the planters with the water trailer.

Since the last thorough go-round, a lot of big weeds had appeared.


under one of the street trees! (Allan’s photo)


the orange lilies someone planted in one of our planters. (Allan’s photo)


one of my favourite tree beds blowing in the wind

A friend drove by on the way to birdwatch at the port and said “It’s late, you have to go home! I saw you can hardly walk across the street!”  I said, “I can’t; this has to be done!” And it did have to be done; we could not quit with only two thirds of the planters watered and cared for.


old Erysimum, before






boatyard garden (will get plenty of weeding next week)



picotee poppy at the end of the boatyard garden (Allan’s photo)

We finished by watering and some weeding at our post office garden, by which time we were both cold and wet and miserable and windblown and squabbling after a 9.5 hour day.

Tomorrow, I have some local weeding to do and Allan has some volunteering at the playground build project. That will make for a short work week.  We will be making up for that with many hours next week.



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Public Service Announcement:

Here is the poster for the most excellent garden tour put on by the local Master Gardeners; this is by the same group whose tour in Aberdeen was so great last year.  I do not exaggerate when I say I am counting the days in anticipation, especially after talking with one of the organizers about this year’s tour:


Thursday, 1 June 2017


There had been this much rain overnight. I figured that meant we did not have to water the port gardens.


That made me very happy.

We had four hydrangeas to plant at two other gardens on our block.

The J’s garden

all Allan’s photos here


scilla to pull by the driveway, before



quite tatty


trying to drive a hole through the landscape fabric under one of the old hydrangeas

We had transplanted this one before realizing that there is horrible landscape fabric underneath.  At dinner the day after driving some holes, Todd said he would just take the hydrangea out, again, and cut the fabric, and put it back and water it a lot.  So we might do that quite soon.


more scilla to pull


We also simply must dig up and replant the sad hydrangea to the right.  It cannot grow upright because of the darned fabric (installed by the previous owners).  I did not have the confidence that they might survive transplanting in June till I talked to Todd about it the next day.


All we have are tiny leaf buds…and a cattywampus sideways plant.


old Hydrangea paniculata had definitely died.


new one in


Planter Box Teresa says this hydrangea caused a sensation in a garden on last year’s local tour.

Norwood garden




Top heavy hydrangeas were probably forced for Mother’s Day.

Port of Ilwaco

We got to stay in Ilwaco all day, weeding the port and boatyard in preparation for an Art Walk on Friday evening.  (We won’t be attending because it will be in early evening while we are still working.)  Because we wouldn’t have time for the whole strip of curbside gardens, we prioritized the ones that would be most walked by during the event: From The Ilwaco Pavilion (restrooms) to the west end.

Howerton Avenue curbside gardens:


by Ilwaco pavilion


by Ilwaco pavilion. Still have a space, left, for another Helianthemum but could only find the dark red one. I want yellow or orange.


Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ (Allan’s photo)


Armeria maritima (sea thrift) (Allan’s photo)


Chatting with the captain of the Mabel Grey



Dianthus ‘Raspberry Swirl’ (Allan’s photo)


Cistus (Allan’s photo)


We both grumbled over a stolen Allium ‘Purple Sensation’ (Allan’s photo)

I was shocked that a few of the Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ were drooping their heads, so despite rain last night, we did some watering.


Wilting. WHY?? You are supposed to be drought tolerant.  (It stood up after being watered.)


watering the Time Enough Books garden (Allan’s photo)


in the Salt Hotel curbside garden


columbine (Allan’s photo)


Ilwaco Freedom Market curbside garden (Allan’s photo)


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo


Allan’s photo

I am frustrated with the “garden” by the Freedom Market parking lot.  The plants keep getting stepped on even in areas where I thought they would be safe.


I thought the log would be enough to keep people from walking on this elephant garlic.

Picking little weeds out of a barkscape without interesting plants to enjoy is not my idea of pleasant work.  I have to figure this garden out better.  I think starting with small plants did not work.  This fall, I might add a whole bunch of substantial Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ in order to make more of a “This is a GARDEN!” statement.  I would think that marijuana users of all sorts would enjoy some flowers.

I’d been in a positive mood that we would get everything on Howerton done in plenty of time to have hours left for the boatyard.  Nope.  We got there at 4:30; I’d been hoping for 3:00.


looking south at three blocks worth of weeding


Stipa gigantea hanging too far over the sidewalk; we clipped it.


cut Stipa


Stipa gigantea


From the garden side, we always hear interesting conversations (and some swearing) from people working on boats.

I had eighteen painted sage to plant here and I delegated that to Allan because I could not stand one more planting job.


Painted sage comes in pink, white, and blue. I had marked the leaf as R for “rose (pink)”.


some water for each new plant


poppies out in time for Art Walk  (Allan’s photo)


Allan’s photo


Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ (Allan’s photo)


A few successful sweet peas are fighting it out with horsetail. (Allan’s photo)


wild lupines and poppies (Allan’s photo)


lupines (Allan’s photo)



By 6:30, I had reached the gate and Allan had weeded the garden south of the gate.


I was pleased with our work.  Not every horsetail had been caught, but it was the best it had looked yet this year and while not perfect, it was perfectly fine for people walking along here during Art Walk.

Someone told me once that the boatyard garden desperately needed water because all the flowers were drooping.  I rushed to go there and water, and when I arrived I realized that the poppy buds were what she had seen.


This is just the way poppy buds start out, drooping and then standing upright.

The workboard has only one planting project now.



While we were weeding the boatyard, the owner of the interesting little garden at the Loading Dock Village at the port asked if we would take it on.  It is a charming little garden and I could not resist saying yes.  There is no gardening day that I like better, other than my own garden, than an All Ilwaco Day.



Loading Dock Village garden in 2014. I love the metal edging and big metal wall.




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 Tuesday, 5 July 2016

apples at home (Allan's photo)

apples at home (Allan’s photo) and one scabby pear

Mike’s Garden

A few blocks east is the mayor’s garden, which we tidy up every couple of weeks.  Today:

from across the street

from across the street

from the corner

from the corner


Mike's Escallonia iveyi

Mike’s Escallonia iveyi

I am pretty sure that this escallonia is grown from a cutting of the Escallonia iveyi at the Anchorage Cottages (originally from Heronswood Nursery, because the Anchorage was owned at one time by Dan Hinkley’s husband’s sister).  In 2003, Carol Jones of The Elves Did It Gardening worked with me there and took some cuttings. Later, she designed and installed Mayor Mike’s beautiful garden.  The ironic thing is that my own garden lacks this stunning pure white escallonia.  I tried cuttings last year; maybe some are out there and not big enough to bloom yet.

the fruit of the native wild cucumber vine

the fruit of the native wild cucumber vine in Mike’s shaded back garden.

Long Beach

We watered and groomed all the main street planters and the street tree pocket gardens.

by Lewis and Clark Square. The man with a red shirt (left) is reading his way along plaques that describe Lewis and Clark's journey.

by Lewis and Clark Square. The man with a red shirt (left) is reading his way along plaques that describe Lewis and Clark’s journey.

Big planter in L&C Square. That is Cotoneaster 'Coral Beauty' on the edge, planted 16 years ago or more. It got sort of made fun of in the lecture at Hardy Plant weekend, about new and much improved cotoneasters. I still rather like this one.

Big planter in L&C Square. That is Cotoneaster ‘Coral Beauty’ on the edge, planted 16 years ago or more. It got sort of made fun of in the lecture about new and improved cotoneasters at Hardy Plant weekend. I still rather like this one although I do regret planting something so big…I just wanted to keep people from sitting on the planter.

Public gardening: I had my bucket on this bench, and a jacket someone had left, and was just hooking up the hose when a woman came and shoved the bucket and jacket aside and lit up a cigarette. I did, softly and kindly (really!), get her to move to the planter nearby that I had already watered. (!!!)

Public gardening: I had my bucket on this bench, and a jacket someone had left, and was just hooking up the hose when a woman came and shoved the bucket and jacket aside and plopped down and lit up a cigarette. I did, softly and kindly (really!), get her to move to the planter nearby that I had already watered. (!!!) It was not her jacket.

One of my painted sage (late to bloom this year) was pulled totally out of the soil. It had happened so recently that it had not wilted at all and I think i saved it. Note to self: Geranium 'Rozanne' here next year.

One of my painted sage (late to bloom this year) was pulled totally out of the soil. It had happened so recently that it had not wilted at all and I think I saved it. Note to self: Geranium ‘Rozanne’ here next year.

Town was still busy.

Town was still busy.

On the busiest weekends, the stoplights are turned off to avoid traffic jams, so pedestrians cross every which way.

On the busiest weekends, the stoplights are turned off to avoid traffic jams, so pedestrians cross every which way.

lambs ears, and the new little round silver plant whose name I have forgotten, and santolina

three silvers: lambs ears, and the new little round silver plant whose name I have forgotten, and santolina

I encountered a young man with a guitar lounging supine on the bench and using a clump of Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ as a pillow while smoking a cigarette.  I asked him to get up.  He did not.  I told him to move.  He did not.  I threatened to water him.  No motion.  I said I might call the police as he was smoking illegally close to a shop doorway.  Finally he moved.  By then it was funny and we both laughed.  I told him that public gardening can be rewarding but sometimes works my last nerve.  He said “Sorry in advance for my language, but I am sorry for being such a dick.”

sedums used as pillow

sedums used as pillow; plaque goes back to long gone planter volunteer days

Later the same guy told Allan “You’re using a LOT of water!” while Allan was watering the tree.  Allan felt it was in a reproving tone.

Just the Eryngium (Allan's photo)

 Eryngium in street tree garden (Allan’s photo)

Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue' in Fifth Street Park

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ in Fifth Street Park


Bees love it.

Busy town: Fifth Street Park (Allan's photo)

Busy town: Fifth Street Park (Allan’s photo)

Full sidewalks make navigating tricky with hose and bucket. (Allan's photo)

Full sidewalks make navigating tricky with hose and bucket. (Allan’s photo)

When open, these lilies colour coordinate with the Benson's sign.

When open, these lilies colour coordinate with the Benson’s sign.



deadheading and watering...under the very big hanging basket

deadheading and watering…under the very big hanging basket

lavender that looks good on just one side. (The back is bare and woody). Allan's photo

lavender that looks good on just one side. (The back is bare and woody). Allan’s photo

Eryngium variifolium under a street tree (Allan's photo)

Eryngium variifolium under a street tree.  I love them all. (Allan’s photo)

two dogs. (Allan's photo)

two dogs. (Allan’s photo)

Hardy fuchsia and agastache in my favourite planter by Dennis Co. (Allan's photo)

Hardy fuchsia and Agastache ‘Acapulco Salmon and Pink’ in my favourite planter by Dennis Co. (Allan’s photo)

This pleases my fannish heart (and shows how crowded the sidewalks were). (Allan's photo)

This pleases my fannish heart (and shows how crowded the sidewalks were). (Allan’s photo)

Fish Alley (Allan's photo)

Fish Alley (Allan’s photo)

Later, Fifth Street Park was quieter. (Allan's photo)

Later, Fifth Street Park was quieter. (Allan’s photo)

We worked on the center berm. Eventually we will be able to cross it off the work list! It is the only project on the list right now.

We worked on the center berm. Eventually we will be able to cross it off the work list! It is the only project on the list right now.

Cries of WHEEEE from the little fish rides nearby.

Cries of WHEEEE from the little fish rides nearby.

A local businessman who owns several well run local businesses has bought the rides and they will soon be refurbished, we hear.

Center berm is SO boring and may end up just getting string trimmer treatment.

Center berm is SO boring and may end up just getting string trimmer treatment.

Allan's photos: before

Allan’s photos: before (most of this was the rather pretty annual Briza media (quaking grass) that has now gone dry.

after: quick strimmer solution

after: quick strimmer solution for hardpacked miserable area

I should give up and plant more rugosas in the bare areas. Giving up because i did not want a monoculture of roses.

I should give up and plant more rugosas in the bare areas. Giving up because i did not want a monoculture of roses.  This is one place I will leave salal.

Stipa gigantea on a prettier berm (Allan's photo)

Stipa gigantea on a prettier berm (Allan’s photo)


I had every intention of weeding at the Ilwaco boatyard garden while Allan watered the Ilwaco planters.  And then I simply could not.  I felt guilty till I realized that Allan would be done working quicker if he did not have to drop off the debris trailer at the boatyard, then pick up the water trailer, then take the water trailer home and come retrieve the debris trailer.  So I went home and worked on the garden tour blog posts and Allan took all the rest of these photos:


taken while filling the water tank at the boatyard

taken while filling the water tank at the boatyard



sweet peas on boatyard fence

sweet peas on boatyard fence

another break in the hose

another break in the hose

calendula flowers and seeds

calendula flowers and seeds

This nasturtium grows outside of our dear friend Jenna's Queen La De Da studio so gets extra water from her.

This nasturtium grows outside of our dear friend Jenna’s Queen La De Da studio so gets extra water from her.


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