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Posts Tagged ‘Gunnera’

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

It had been a cold night.

one of our bird baths. clippers resting on ice (Allan’s photo)

We drove up to Long Beach to do a small amount of work and pick up our check.

some lovely seasonal garlanding next to the Ilwaco Post Office

in Long Beach City Hall

Long Beach City Hall: finance staffer Helen does the decorating

City Hall west side

We’d had a frost overnight that had not been hard enough to create the need for the final go-round of planters.  However, Allan did cut down the last of the blooming chrysanthemums in a planter.

Unclipped Geranium ‘Rozanne’ were still blooming.

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ and primroses blooming in December (Allan’s photo)

Goodbye to the yellow chrysanthemum (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

In Fifth Street Park, we took down the remaining old leaves on the Gunnera.

before

Thick stemmed gunnera take the big loppers.

after, with a few old leaves tucked over the crown of the plant to protect it from freezing

We had gotten a call from Oceanside Animal Clinic that our Smoky’s ashes were ready to be picked up.  Listening to the message, I had gotten teary when Dr. Raela said, “We will just tuck them away till you can pick them up.”  She knows just what to say.  We did pick them up, and I couldn’t help but cry.  My best kitty ever.  It’s hard to have the little box of ashes.

We dropped a book into the Ilwaco Timberland Library return box and admired their Christmas wreaths.

Ilwaco Timberland Library

I am enjoying other people’s decorations even though I don’t think we will put up our own tree this year.  The only place to put it is where my living room desk sits.  I like sitting at my living room desk on rainy days to blog with a garden view.  Eventually, I will make my Smoky retrospective photo blog posts there.

We drove along the Port of Ilwaco gardens and, of course, I saw a few things to do.

east end, looking west, before (Allan’s photos)

after

calendula blooming (Allan’s photo)

We clipped a small Miscanthus ‘Gold Bar’ at the Ilwaco Pavilion and an Eryngium at Time Enough Books and that was the end of the work day.

Crab pots are now stacked up in the field to the south of our property.

Allan’s photo

At the western port parking lots, stacked crab pots make a long aisle out of the traffic lane.

crab pots and the boat storage yard

Allan’s photo

At home, I decided that the Ilwaco boatyard garden and the port gardens are done for the year and erased them from the work board.

I then took a closer look at the box containing Smoky’s ashes.  It was so nicely decorated; when I got the ashes of my good cat Dumbles, from a vet across the river, they were in a plain square box.

“If love alone could have kept you here, you would have lived forever.”

I intend to bury Smoky’s ashes where his mother, Mary, is buried by the garden boat.  I need a day when I can do that properly, not in haste, and I do not know when that will be. Maybe I should wait till early spring.  I am wondering if I should finally bury my good cat Dumbles’ ashes in the same spot.  Dumbles liked to go outdoors at our old house.  At our new house, he was scared, and he died before the garden got big enough to be like the old garden.  Surely by now he would like it?  I know Mary would have probably bossed him around, like she did all the cats, but Smoky would have been his friend because Smoky was friends with and cuddled with Frosty, Calvin, Skooter, and of course, his mother Mary.

me and my Dumbles at the old house

Dumbles was a special boy, but even his loss did not affect me like Smoky’s did. I miss Smoky every day, especially while I am reading or watching television.  Frosty or Calvin (not Skooter) will sit on my lap, for awhile, but neither of them are snuggly.  Dumbles’ ashes are on a shelf near where I sleep. For now, Smoky’s ashes are on shelf near my chair.  I find that hard to deal with.

At two o clock, I was able to get back to my compost project, with the goal of emptying bin one into bin two.

I first took some starts of Artemisia ‘Powis Castle clippings,  sticking them in here and there, including by Mary’s grave where I want to grow silver-grey plants.

By the garden boat, the strawberries have taken over again. My vision is silver grey plants, and some catmint, with the scree garden reclaimed from strawberries.

Then the compost shifting began.

2:30 PM

Allan climbed onto the roof to prune the blue potato vine, which was putting some weight on our internet cable.

Allan’s photo, before; the after was after dark and too late for a photo

Here is an “after” taken the next day.

view from the roof

🙂 I do love composting.  I had no idea he was taking these pictures.

By 4:15, bin one was successfully shifted into bin two.

finally at the bottom of bin one!

I added some debris to bin one, clipping the pieces up small (six to eight inch lengths, mostly) to make them break down faster.

After sunset:

Tomorrow, I have one more pile, to the right, to shift into bin one, and then I will still have room for more garden clippings.

Scott and Tony stopped by briefly with a Christmas card.

Rudy and Bailey and Scott; Allan lent Scott a couple of movie DVDs.

Our good friend Tony.

Scott and Rudy

Tony and Scott had just been out on the beach clamming and took these photos.

Tony’s photo

Tony’s photo

When clams are in season and the clam tide comes at sunset or at night, people clam by lantern light.

This photo is just to show those who cried along with me about Smoky that there is still happiness in life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Friday, 20 November 2015

Soon I'll be able to spend the days at home with my feline friends!

Soon I’ll be able to spend the days at home with my feline friends!

Long Beach

My big plan today was to finish all the fall clean up in the Long Beach Parks, beginning with the south east quadrant of Fifth Street Park.

Allan clipping siberian iris

Allan clipping siberian iris

I’m not tidying the bed under the three trees because I am hoping the city crew will dig it out so we can start over (or maybe they will river rock it).  I’m afraid to dig in there because it would take a heavy pick and I don’t want to damage the sprinkler system.

a possible do-over is in the works for this bed

a possible do-over is in the works for this bed

I clipped back the gunnera by the pond to make it easier for the city crew to do the end of season pond cleaning.  After the first hard frost, the rest of the leaves will turn black and I will lay a couple over the crown to protect it for the winter.

before

before

after. two baby gunneras at lower right.

after. two baby gunneras at lower right.

We noticed a banner of poinsettias made of Christmas lights suspended over the intersection.  I said to Allan, wouldn’t that be great for our front arbour?  So I googled it when I got home and found out that it is called a “Skyline” (across the street banner) and that this particular one listed for $3953.00

Never mind!

Never mind!

The Anchorage

I decided it would be great to throw the Anchorage fall clean up into the day’s work since I’d rather work there during the week than on the possibly busy weekend.

Allan cleaned the front of this garden bed. Before...

Allan cleaned the front of this garden bed. Before…

and after

and after

We'll have to return after a hard frost to remove the mushy calla lily leaves.

We’ll have to return after a hard frost to remove the mushy calla lily leaves.

I planted a cyclamen from Our Kathleen, who used to stay at the Anchorage before she bought her cottage.

I planted a cyclamen from Our Kathleen, who used to stay at the Anchorage before she bought her cottage.

This volunteer yucca near the office will simply have to go. Today, it charmed me for some reason.

This volunteer yucca (?) near the office will simply have to go. Today, it charmed me for some reason.  I think it will get too big and pointy.

Rose 'New Dawn' got all its black spotty leaves picked off. Before...

Rose ‘New Dawn’ got all its black spotty leaves picked off. Before…

and after, with poky-outie bits trimmed off.

and after, with poky-outie bits trimmed off.

Melianthus major in the courtyard

Melianthus major in the courtyard might go down in a hard frost.

Other than a post frost check up, we are now done with the Anchorage Cottages garden for 2015.

back to Long Beach

The Long Beach “Holidays at the Beach” extravaganza will be centered around Veterans Field, so that was our next project.

holds

I have a suspicion that the Grandmer Mermaid’s under-the-sea photo booth just might turn out to be created by our friend Queen La De Da!

corner garden in Vet field, after pulling more painted sage and some perennial clipping

corner garden in Vet field, after pulling more painted sage and some perennial clipping

 

flag pavilion garden, before

flag pavilion garden, before

I decided the Gaura 'Whirling Butterflies' did have to be clipped as they were simply too whirled around by wind.

I decided the Gaura ‘Whirling Butterflies’ did have to be clipped as they were simply too whirled around by wind.  And the blue oat grass came out as it is old and tatty.

Allan's photo: I'm poised to tidy up the lawn, not run a marathon.

Allan’s photo: I’m poised to tidy bits of debris off of the lawn, not to run a marathon.

after. Almost no wind. Flag at half mast for France.

After. Almost no wind. American flag at half mast for France.

I checked up on a block’s worth of planters, forgot to photograph some glowing yellow chrysanthemums still blooming in one of them, and Allan weeded and clipped in the park next to the Kabob House.  No time to eat lunch there today.

We took a load of debris to city works.  An argy-bargy ensued when I thought we could go first to Coulter Park and pull all the crocosmia and put it in the trailer also.  Allan felt that there was so very much crocosmia that the trailer would be overloaded so we dumped the first load.

Next, Coulter Park got a good crocosmia pulling and some weeding.  I also pulled the crocosmia by the Peninsula Arts Association building next to the park because it was such a mess.

PAA building, before

PAA building, before

Long ago, it was the Kite Museum and we had a sweet little garden there.

Historic photo from 2007: Long ago, it was the Kite Museum and we had a sweet little garden there.

As you can see in the present day photo, the garden has now disappeared except for the crocosmia.

today, after pulling crocosmia

today, after pulling crocosmia

Meanwhile, Allan pulled the Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ next to the entry ramp for the old train depot building, a job that got much harder to access when the new railings and ramp were installed.

 

going in

going in

Allan's photo, before

Allan’s photos, before

another before view with Dennis Company in the background

another before view with Dennis Company in the background

I cleaned up the little circle garden at the front of the park and checked two blocks worth of planters while Allan cleaned the strip by the ramp.

after

after

after

after

after, admiring his accomplishment

after, admiring his accomplishment

 

The second load of debris did turn out to be quite substantial.

The second load of debris did turn out to be quite substantial.

After our second debris run (accomplished before the gate closes at four, to avoid fussing with the keys), we returned to Coulter to prune one more siberian iris and do a bit more weeding.

the iris in question (Allan's photo)

the iris in question (Allan’s photos)

after

after

This is all done in time for Shoeboxes of Joy to set up their annual volunteer HQ and donation station in the old train depot building.

coming soon

coming soon

Shoeboxes of Joy: “Our goal is to be able to provide a “Shoebox of Joy” to the low income elderly and/or disabled, who may not have family or friends close by. This is a wonderful opportunity for our community to work together and provide a “special gift to those in need”. A “Shoebox of Joy” may be the only gift they receive during the Holiday Season.”

Before dark, we did more clipping in a couple of blocks worth of planters.  Passing Fifth Street Park, we saw that since our work session across the street at noon, the city crew had erected the seasonal lighted sea serpent!

And they did not cut down my ornamental grass to do it. ;-)

And they did not cut down my ornamental grass to do it. 😉

the southernmost planter, and the last cosmos in town about to be pulled

the southernmost planter, and the last cosmos in town about to be pulled

In her office just north of this last planter, we had neatly arranged a 4:30 appointment with Shelly Pollock of NW Insurance and Financial so she could help us transfer to a new medical insurance plan for 2016.  She is brilliant (and is also the founder of the Grass Roots Garbage Gang beach clean up group), so if you are local and need help with such things, do look her up.  Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we are still able to afford medical insurance (even though our cost will double from last year).  Thanks, Shelly.

Steve and Shelly

Steve and Shelly at our place on Halloween

at home

three more items erased from the work board: LB Parks, LB planters, Anchorage

three more items erased from the work board: LB Parks, LB planters, Anchorage

A bit of a cheat: I erased Ilwaco from fall clean up list, too, as I decided it will save the city money if we just do one more walk-around AFTER the first hard frost.  As for the mulching library (Ilwaco Community Building) project, that is Allan’s to organize because it is his job.  (I might help spread the mulch even if it means emerging from staycation.)

We are now three, perhaps even two, days way from the start of staycation, other than the pesky frost cleanup.  Tomorrow, weather permitting: Klipsan Beach Cottages and Marilyn’s.  Sunday, we just might be able to finish the port and the boatyard and the last tidying in Long Beach.  (No matter how weedy the beach approach garden and berms are, all they are getting from us till 2016 is the pulling of some crocosmia and clipping of a few more perennials).

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Saturday, 18 July 2015

Music in the Gardens Tour, Long Beach Peninsula

a benefit for the Water Music Festival and music programs in local schools

ticket tour map

ticket tour map

Garden 7: Marla’s Real Living Garden

Marla’s urban farm overlooks Willapa Bay and benefits from her early years of living on a Washington farm.  She says, “I am still amazed at nature.  You plant a seed or start and an awesome plant grows.”  In just two years, she has grown and built quite a bit, including fencing, lawn, landscaping, irrigation, flower and vegetable beds,  hanging baskets and a chicken coop.  Her pride and joy are the beautiful hens and the eggs they lay.

I wrote about Marla’s garden a year and a month before this year’s tour.  Garden Tour Nancy and I previewed it this year on June 1st.

Lavatera outside the south fence, June 1st

Lavatera outside the south fence, June 1st

driveway

driveway

tour day!

tour day!

photo by Bob Duke

photo by Bob Duke

in the driveway

in the driveway

front gate at SW corner of the house

front gate at SW corner of the house

birds

a landing spot for baby birds

a landing spot for baby birds

soft

Allan’s photo

inside the front gate

inside the front gate

to the left just inside the gate, south wall by back steps

to the left just inside the gate, south wall by back steps, photo by Kathleen Shaw

clematis seedheads

clematis seedheads

by the stairway

by the stairway

perennial sweet pea

perennial sweet pea

the glorious porch, photo by Kathleen Shaw

the glorious porch, photo by Kathleen Shaw

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

containers packed with perennials and annuals

containers packed with perennials and annuals

flowers3

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

tour day, with the porch gate open

tour day, with the porch gate open

I love the porch, all its adjacent plantings, its art and decor and the way it wraps around two sides of the house.  I’d like to pick it up and put it right down next to my house!  So we’ll explore the porch first, and then the garden.

view down back porch steps

view down back porch steps, with Marla’s mother in pink top, seated

Marla's colourful flower baskets

Marla’s colourful flower baskets (Allan’s photo)

plants

Allan’s photo

walking along the porch, looking at the garden

walking along the porch, looking down at the garden

Over the fence, we can see the garage of the next door house, which is also on the garden tour.  photo by Kathleen Shaw.

Over the fence, we can see the garage of the next door house, which is also on the garden tour. photo by Kathleen Shaw.

looking north

looking north toward the Charles Nelson B&B next door

on the porch

on the porch

On the east side of the porch, Portland guitarist Terry Robb performed for tour guests.

Terry Robb

Terry Robb (Allan’s photo)

Terry Robb

Terry Robb

While I listened to him, Marla's mom (left, in pink) was still up on the porch sitting next to him and enjoying the music.

While I listened to him, Marla’s mom (left, in pink) was still up on the porch sitting next to him and enjoying the music.

Terry Robb

Terry Robb

robb5

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

view to the east

view to the east

over Willapa Bay

over Willapa Bay

looking down at the north side of the garden from the porch

looking down at the north side of the garden from the porch

Now we’ll walk return along the porch to the back steps.

south side of porch

south side of porch, photo by Kathleen Shaw

porch wall (pre-tour visit, June 1st)

porch wall (pre-tour visit, June 1st)

DSC06242

down the stairs we go, with a nice strong railing to hold onto.

down the stairs we go, with a nice strong railing to hold onto.

porch decorations at top of stairs

porch decorations at top of stairs

ornamental grasses skirting the porch

ornamental grasses skirting the porch

looking down from the porch to the entry patio

looking down from the porch to the entry patio

patio corner

patio corner

Marla's next door neighbour, whose garden we'll visit next, gave her this sign.

Marla’s next door neighbour, whose garden we’ll visit next, gave her this sign for the fence by the patio.

on the patio table:  Marla's grandchildren had painted these sand dollars (photo by Kathleen Shaw)

on the patio table: Marla’s grandchildren had painted these sand dollars (photo by Kathleen Shaw)

farm whirlygig

farm whirlygig

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

tags made from cut, painted yard sticks

tags made from cut, painted yard sticks, photo by Kathleen Shaw

plants

flowers

Allan’s photo

birdhouses

porch5

looking east from the patio

looking east from the patio, pre-tour visit, June 1st

north side of house, photo by Kathleen Shaw

north side of house, photo by Kathleen Shaw

porch6

ornamental grasses skirting the porch

ornamental grasses skirting the porch

looking back at the patio

looking back at the patio

astilbes

astilbes

SE corner of house

SE corner of house (Allan’s photo)

SE corner, Alliums, pretour visit, June 1st

SE corner, Alliums, pretour visit, June 1st

east side of house, pre-tour visit, June 1st

east side of house, pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

cosmos, tour day

cosmos, tour day

cosmos

cosmos

over the fence

over the fence

east side of house, pre-tour visit, June 1st

east side of house, pre-tour visit, June 1st

photo by Bob Duke showing east and north sides of house

photo by Bob Duke showing east and north sides of house

photo by Bob Duke showing north side of house and chicken domain (right)

photo by Bob Duke showing north side of house and chicken domain (lower right)

north side of house

north side of house

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

hostas in shade, photo by Kathleen Shaw

hostas in shade, photo by Kathleen Shaw

fuchsias, photo by Kathleen Shaw

fuchsias, photo by Kathleen Shaw

deck on north side of house

deck on north side of house

Plants were for sale by Marla's  brother in law who supplies orchids to Portland Nursery!

Plants were for sale by Marla’s brother in law, Greig Warner, who supplies orchids to Portland Nursery!

That explains the orchids in the garden! photo by Kathleen Shaw

That explains the orchids in the garden! photo by Kathleen Shaw

I want to get to know this fellow better as he is a true CPN (Certified Plant Nut).  I missed out on a way cool plant here, as you will see in the next garden tour post.  I met him briefly at the tour and learned that he is moving to the beach so I hope we will get to know him.

looking toward NE corner of garden, pre-tour visit, June 1st

looking toward NE corner of garden, pre-tour visit, June 1st

gunnera by back deck, looking west

gunnera by back deck, looking west

gunnera3

in the NW corner of the yard: the chicken coop and veg garden

Gunnera, June 1st

Gunnera, June 1st, looking east

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

gunnera flowers

gunnera flowers and lawn clippings to help retain moisture (Allan’s photo)

the hens' domain

the hens’ domain

on the north deck

on the north deck

Erysimum 'Constant Cheer', photo by Kathleen Shaw

Erysimum ‘Constant Cheer’, photo by Kathleen Shaw

Eryngium 'Jade Frost', photo by Kathleen Shaw

Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’, photo by Kathleen Shaw

painted yard stick plant tag

painted yard stick plant tag (Allan’s photo)

Allan's photo of the making of the plant tags

Allan’s photo of the making of the plant tags

view east from the henhouse corner

view east from the henhouse corner

raised vegetable beds and chicken yard

raised vegetable beds and chicken yard

pre-tour visit, June 1

pre-tour visit, June 1

On tour day afternoon, because of the unusually hot weather, the chickens were in the shade of their coop.

not a chicken to be seen!

not a chicken to be seen!

Fortunately, they had been out and about on June 1st when Nancy and I visited the garden for sneak peek photos.

Marla's beloved flock

Marla’s beloved flock

the coop

the coop

Marla’s garden was a close contender for my favourite because of its intensive container plantings, its whimsical decor, and the chickens.  While I don’t feel that I have time to care for chickens, I would surely love to incorporate a barnyard corner like this into my garden someday.  And the wrap around porch.  And the nice, friendly neighbours.  When Nancy and I visited earlier, Marla just matter-of-factly put the exciteable galloping dog into the fenced yard of the neighbour to the north.  And her neighbour to the south will be our next garden tour visit.

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Saturday, 18 July 2015

Music in the Gardens Tour, Long Beach Peninsula

a benefit for the Water Music Festival and music programs in local schools

ticket tour map

ticket tour map

Garden 5: Somsri’s Garden

A fire-circle patio welcomes you to this plant collector’s two-year-old garden, whose owner has shopped globally for unique plants from Hong Kong, Japan, and her native Thailand as well as nurseries in the Pacific Northwest.  Her beautiful raised-bed septic drain field includes driftwood creatures and garden art partially hidden among the flowers.   More magical pairings of plants and art await your discovery throughout this garden.  

Sit yourself down and make yourself comfy as I have a lot to share about this garden, which I visited twice before the tour as well as on tour day.

Nancy and I went out pre-touring on June 1st.  When we got to north Surfside we took a wrong turn and ended up half a block west of Somsri’s garden.  On that block, I said we must stop and look at the raised septic field garden.

down the block from Somsri

down the block from Somsri

a driftwood serpent

a driftwood serpent

with a marble eye

with a marble eye

When Nancy and I went in the right direction, and saw Somsri’s garden, I realized that she must have created the neighbouring one, too.  Yes, she said, she helped her neighbour by planting that garden and making the artistic touches.  I am always smitten with someone taking her personal gardening outside of her own space to beautify the world.

As usual, I will intermingle pre-tour with tour day photos of Somsri’s garden.

Somsri's garden: Photo by Bob Duke

Somsri’s garden: Photo by Bob Duke

photo by Bob Duke

photo by Bob Duke

On tour day, we arrived at the same time as our friends Ed Strange and Basket Case Greenhouse’s Fred Aust.

Basket Case Nancy was gone visiting her mother, so Fred and Ed toured together.

Basket Case Nancy was gone visiting her mother, so Fred and Ed toured together. (Allan’s photo)

My nephew Jackson

My nephew Jackson

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo: Jackson was having a break from riding in the truck.

Pretty soon Debbie Teashon also turned up!  She was touring at a slower pace than ours because of taking photos and videos and listening to some of the music.  In fact, she saw only six of the gardens.  That’s a good reason to have no more than seven gardens next year, in my opinion.

me, Debbie, Ed and Fred

me, Debbie, Ed and Fred

west side of the garden

west side of the garden

south side

south side

main entrance via the driveway

main entrance via the driveway

east side of driveway

east side of driveway

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

dragon2

Allan’s photo

June 1st

June 1st

June 1st: the moment I fell in love with this garden.

June 1st: the moment I fell in love with this garden.

tour day

tour day

Somsri’s repurposed found objects and her driftwood scupltures are throughout the garden all the way out to the street.

driftwood and shell planter

driftwood and shell planter, June 1st

acanthus

patio

patio2

patio

patio3

patio4

Across the patio, the music tent.

walkway to front door, photo by Kathleen Shaw

walkway to front door, photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

entry garden, west garage wall, photo by Kathleen Shaw

Debbie taking photos.

Debbie taking photos.

front porch

front porch

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

west window garden, photo by Kathleen Shaw

west window garden, photo by Kathleen Shaw

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

balls

pre-tour visit, July 3rd

pre-tour visit, July 3rd

dierama, July 3rd

dierama, July 3rd

and on tour day

and on tour day

planters

Brian O’ Connor was the tour day musician.

brian

This man has an excellent voice.

This man has an excellent voice.

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

daisy

Somsri (whose nickname is Sam), right, walks with a tour guest.

Somsri (whose nickname is Sam), right, walks with a tour guest.

On the west side of the garden, the raised drain field, required in modern septic systems at the beach, has been transformed into an eye level garden.  In my opinion, this area is the star, planted up with cool plants chosen by a true CPN (Certified Plant Nut) who is always on the lookout for something new and interesting.

south end of the drain field garden

south end of the drain field garden

pre-tour visit, June 1st

pre-tour visit, June 1st

June 1st

June 1st

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

eye level garden

eye level garden

ird

Allan’s photo

June 1st

June 1st

Sam and a tour guest

Sam and a tour guest

pre-tour visit, July 3rd

pre-tour visit, July 3rd

July 3rd

July 3rd

raised2

June 1st

June 1st

July 3rd

July 3rd

June 1st

June 1st

June 1st

June 1st

hens2

June 1st

June 1st

north end of raised garden. June 1st

north end of raised garden. June 1st

June 1st

June 1st

plants

plants

I could walk around and around this raised bed garden for hours.  It’s great seeing the plants at this level.

pulsatilla

pulsatilla

Nothing much gets past Somsri's desire to turn objects into art.

Nothing much gets past Somsri’s desire to turn objects into art.

cup

cup2

Allan’s photo

farm

hens

bird

nest

Allan’s photo

dahlias

Allan’s photo

drift

white centaurea, June 1st

white centaurea, June 1st

A driftwood fence backs up the garden on the north side of the house.

north side of house

north side of house

a tour guest explores

a tour guest explores

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

Among the beach pines on the south and west sides of the lot, Somsri places her driftwood, fishing float, and shell planters and decorations.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

shell

out

mobiles

The garden extends out to the street.

The garden extends out to the street.

Gunnera, June 1st

Gunnera, June 1st

guests

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

out3

out4

out6

Allan’s photo

June 1st

June 1st

out5

Allan’s photo

out7

Allan’s photo

out9

out10

Allan’s photo; Someone else had told Allan to look for the painted driftwood pieces.

out11

June 1st

June 1st

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

I am sure that if you were to walk by Somsri’s garden and saw her outside, that she would invite you to tour the garden and share her love and enthusiasm for each plant and each creation.

Somsri talks to us about a plant she brought back, years ago, from Thailand.

Somsri talks to us about a plant she brought back, years ago, from Thailand.

siam4

Allan’s photo

It spends the winter indoors.

It spends the winter indoors.

She calls it Siam Lucky Plant.

She calls it Siam Lucky Plant.

siam3

Allan's photo: Somsri's spouse quietly watching the tour guests.

Allan’s photo: Somsri’s spouse quietly watching the tour guests.

I told him that I loved the garden because walking through it was the best kind of experience of being in the gardener’s mind.  He said Sam has a very busy mind, and he just helps her realize her ideas.  What a nice man.  I also told both of them that Somsri’s edges out all the other gardens as my favourite, because she is an artist and a plant collector and her garden has the quirkiness that I adore.  Another reason it was my favourite is because she does it all herself, and that always pleases me.  It’s not made to impress or dazzle anyone but Sam and her spouse, yet provides delight for anyone who walks through.  It had plants I had never seen before (ones she’d brought from Thailand and Japan years ago when it was easier to bring plants through customs).  I’d like to see the garden in all seasons.

interlude

Before we left for the next garden, I took a walk a block down the street and saw Sam’s influence on other gardens.  The way her passion for gardening has spilled out into the neighbourhood is another reason her garden was this year’s favourite of mine.

a couple of houses to the west

a couple of houses to the west

I like the wooden deck.

I like the wooden deck.

wooden deck next to raised drain field.

wooden deck next to raised drain field.

a half block to the west, the garden Sam helps out with.

a half block to the west, the garden Sam helps out with.

It has that Somsri touch.

It has that Somsri touch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Saturday, 25 April 2015

Golden Sands Assisted Living

After we were done enoying the beach clean up volunteer lunch at the Peninsula Senior Center, it was easy to walk right next door and do a little planting at Golden Sands.

left: Senior Center; top left: health clinic; bottom right, Golden Sands

left: Senior Center; top left: health clinic; bottom right, Golden Sands

You can see that not only is there our courtyard garden but also a volunteer-maintained paved strolling trail garden to the north of the facility.

We had just a few plants dug up from my garden and Jo’s to plant in the courtyard: some sanguisorbas and Eryngiums from me and the spare roses that Allan dug out of Jo’s garden last week (replacing them with Floral Carpet rose).

Golden Sands, north side, some volunteer spreading of bark

outside Golden Sands, north side, some volunteer spreading of bark

Allan wheelbarrowing down the hallway to reach the courtyard garden door.

Allan wheelbarrowing down the hallway to reach the courtyard garden door.

While still mostly green, the garden looks like it is just about to pop with colour.

While still mostly green, the garden looks like it is just about to pop with colour.  SE quadrant

NE quadrant outside my mum's old window.

NE quadrant outside my mum’s old window.

NW quadrant: still frustratingly slow.

NW quadrant: still frustratingly slow.

something to admire: My mum's velvet red rose, transplanted from her old garden.

something to admire: My mum’s velvet red rose, transplanted from her old garden.

Allan planted two buckets of old narcissi bulbs.

Allan planted two buckets of old narcissi bulbs.

and was pleased to see the Sumac 'Tiger Eyes' has put out a sprout.  (Last year someone stepped on this little baby; now it has a protective teepee of bamboo.)

and was pleased to see the Sumac ‘Tiger Eyes’ has put out a sprout. (Last year someone stepped on this little baby; now it has a protective teepee of bamboo.)

We weren’t there for long before leaving for the great event of the afternoon: meeting my new nephew, Jackson Strange.

Puppy Time at Ed’s

Yesterday our friend Ed Strange had picked up his new family member, an eight week old Springer Spaniel named Jackson.  Settle back for a plethora of puppy pics:

me meeting Jackson for the first time.

me meeting Jackson for the first time.

all windblown from the beach clean up earlier in the day!

all windblown from the beach clean up earlier in the day!

a very relaxed and trusting puppy, falling asleep

a very relaxed and trusting puppy, falling asleep

After greeting me, Jackson immediately fell asleep between Allan's feet.

After greeting me, Jackson immediately fell asleep between Allan’s feet.

getting a little more comfy with Allan's boot as a pillow.

getting a little more comfy with Allan’s boot as a pillow.

a man and his pup

a man and his pup

walking into the garden

walking into the garden

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Ed has redone the north edge of his property.

Ed has redone the north edge of his property.

In this photo from last year's garden tour, you can get a hint that the front was a solid bank of salal.

In this photo from last year’s garden tour, you can get a hint that the front was a solid bank of sala along a ditchl.  That was quite a transformation, involving the laying of culvert pipe.

the driveway shade garden

the driveway shade garden

Ed''s sweet little single wide, in a new colour

Ed”s sweet little single wide, in a new colour

Some garden discussion and admiration....

Some garden discussion and admiration….

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

An enormous gunnera is the focal point for the garden.

An enormous gunnera is the focal point for the garden.

It has made lots of little seedlings.

It has made lots of little seedlings.

Ed, me, and one other got one of the Garden signs from The Basket Case Greenhouse.

Ed, me, and one other got one of the Garden signs from The Basket Case Greenhouse.

I bet you would like to see some more puppy photos.

Ed and Jackson

Ed and Jackson

Jackson kept falling asleep.

Jackson kept falling asleep.

j5

j6

j7

me taking puppy pics

me taking puppy pics

DSC00266

on Ed's coffee table

on Ed’s coffee table (Allan’s photo)

We sat on the deck visiting for awhile.  Jackson fell asleep again.

j8

j9

j10

j11

j12

A noise scared him and he went under my chair…and fell back asleep.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Ed's corner deck display

Ed’s corner deck display

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Ed got this little statue from his late friend Jimella's garden, in memory

Ed got this little statue from his late friend Jimella’s garden, in memory

Ed was taking three days off from his landscaping business to bond with his pup.  As we left for our next job, they were planning to take a nap together.

Our friend J9 lives down the street and we had a crab pot to drop off for her garden decorating project.

Our J9.

Our J9.

Then…back to work.

Andersen’s RV Park

At Andersen’s, we had a hydrangea to prune, a blueberry to plant, and the usual deadheading and weeding.

Payson Hall planters with red ranunculus

Payson Hall planters with red ranunculus and California poppies

and Allium schubertii

and Allium schubertii

on the door of Payson Hall clubhouse

on the door of Payson Hall clubhouse

and the garbage can

and the garbage can

Owner Lorna had asked me last week if a hydrangea by one of the two cottages (an area we do not take care of) was dead.  No, it was not, I told her, and today Allan pruned it all the way down, down, down to new growth and gave it some fertilizer.

Allan's photo, before

Allan’s photos: before

and after

and after

Allan's photo: deadheading along the picket fence

Allan’s photos: deadheading along the picket fence

and blueberry planting

and blueberry planting

the weekly picket fence garden view.  The sweet peas are almost an inch tall along the fence.

the weekly picket fence garden view. The sweet peas are almost an inch tall along the fence.

Ilwaco

After a day so long and action packed that it would not even fit into one post, I was eager to get home.  At the stoplight intersection, we had to make one last stop to get some photos of the (now closed, with a building needing restoration) Doupé Hardware Store.  A citizen (we don’t know who) had made the effort to make an attractive window display.  This is very welcome at the main entrance to town.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo: This beautiful building was once a thriving store.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

At home, we got more news of the revitalization of town when our friend Julez (a local surfing instructor) stopped by on his way to visit the Starvation Alley Cranberry Farm household just next door to us.  He and his spouse have taken on the Harbor Lights Motel and Lounge at the port, which has been closed for several years.  We are so excited that it will be reopening this summer, and we see craft cocktails made with organic cranberry juice sometime in the future.

Julez, of Skookum Surf and now the Harbor Lights Motel.

Julez, of Skookum Surf and now the Harbor Lights Motel.

his new little dog (Omar?):  Allan's photo

his new little dog (Omar?): Allan’s photo

with his other dog, Taco (Allan's photo)

with his other dog, Taco (Allan’s photo)

It seems Ilwaco is turning around again with a boost of youthful energy.

Tomorrow:  We hope to do the weeding at the Ilwaco Community Building Garden.  This time I’ll go with Allan and see what I’ve gotten us into by saying yes to the job.

We have a tremendously busy week ahead as by next weekend the Ilwaco and Port of Ilwaco gardens need to look perfect for the Saturday children’s parade and opening day of Port of Ilwaco Saturday Market, and Long Beach has to be perfect for the Sunday parade, and Klipsan Beach Cottages has to be perfect for the Saturday Rhodie Tour, and the other resorts should look pretty nice because it’s a big tourist weekend.  This is my last chance to remind you about the Rhodie Tour as this blog is, as usual, running several days behind. Locals, we hope to see you there.

a reminder

a reminder

 

 

 

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Monday, 25 November, 2013

As the weather continues to be bright and warm, I am not envious of the sleeping cats when I leave the house for work.

Smokey and his mom Mary are awfully cute.

Smokey and his mom Mary are awfully cute.

I had looked hopefully on the porch for the delayed shipment of 200 tulips that had been supposed to arrive on Friday, and without which the three last bulb planting jobs and the happy end of bulb time was frustratingly delayed. No bulbs! My back up plan, to mulch instead, would depend on whether or not Raymond was available at the Planter Box to load us with cow manure. Yes, he was!

First we had to unload yesterday’s debris from the trailer. The clean debris went into one of the piles in the back garden, giving me a chance to check on it; I had not had much free daylight time lately.

back garden today

back garden today

The last glorious dahlia is done.

The last glorious dahlia is done.

All the hardy Fuchsias have their leaves crisped by frost. This makes me sad as they usually last much longer.

Fuchsias and Verbascum

Fuchsias and Verbascum

With an empty trailer, we went straight to The Planter Box. While getting ready to load the “Bovine Fiber Digest” (their official name for the processed dairy manure), Raymond told me that we are one of the two warmest spots in the country today: Florida at 70 something degrees and SW Washington Coast in the 60s. I had already changed to my summer shirt.

first load of cow fiber

11:30 AM: first load of cow fiber

Our first target: The Anchorage Cottages.

Anchorage, garden near office, before

Anchorage, garden near office, before

after

after

lovely cow poo

lovely cow poo

Courtyard garden, before, with more of the low glaring sun we are having daily.

Courtyard garden, before, with more of the low glaring sun we are having daily.

courtyard after

courtyard after

I kept the mulch a bit back from the edge so the little, well, turdlets, won’t roll out onto the nice clean courtyard. So the contrast between old sandy soil and the new rich look shows well here:

contrast

contrast

We had enough mulch to do part of the beds by the south end of the cottage complex, as well. Then, back to The Planter Box. I was determined to get as much mulching done as possible since Raymond was there all day long; when he is off on a landscaping job, there is no one to load the fiber.

12:44 PM:  second load

12:44 PM: second load

We had a problem when leaving the Planter Box: The speedometer, tachometer, and gas tank, er, thingie (how much gas is left) all went to zero. It was not the alternator, as the radio and the indicator that shows our miles per gallon still worked. It added considerable worry, in my mind at least. The day had been going so well and I hoped to get three loads of mulch distributed without mechanical problems bringing us to a halt. I especially dread a breakdown with a heavy trailer of mulch attached.

When we got to Long Beach, the second load (which I decided to not refer to as “load number two”) went here:

the newly redone bed in frying pan park, Fifth Street in Long Beach

the newly redone bed in frying pan park, Fifth Street in Long Beach

Hmm, I think that garbage can brings down the tone. It is a cute enough garbage can, but having the bag showing is not quite right. However, it is Not My Problem, and it will not show as much when a bench gets put back next to it. [Next day I learned that it is going to be removed.]

We also added a nice layer of cow poo to the small garden bed on the south side of Summer House, the yellow house you can see in the background of the above photo. And joy! When Allan turned the van back on, all the meters worked as they should. I had been hoping that turning if off and on again would do the trick.

Next we added a nice layer of Cow Fiber at the welcome sign. (Last week we had mulched all three of these areas with Soil Energy from Peninsula Landscape Supply.)

welcome sign with a double whammy of two kinds of mulch

welcome sign with a double whammy of two kinds of mulch

To my delight, the four scoops of cow fiber extended far enough to put a thick layer on the north and east side beds at the Depot Restaurant.

lusciousness at the Depot

lusciousness at the Depot (north side of deck)

east side of dining room

east side of dining room

Back to The Planter Box for load number three!

2:20 PM: Raymond tidies up the Cow Fiber pile after loading our trailer.

2:20 PM: Raymond tidies up the Cow Fiber pile after loading our trailer.

By the way, The Planter Box has a nice selection of bulbs for those who might still need some. It is not too late to plant; around here, you can plant bulbs well into December.

bulbs

bulbs

Just to keep the suspense strong about whether or not we would accomplish offloading three loads of mulch today, the engine light came on in the van. My heart sank when I came back outside from paying and saw Allan with his head under the hood. Whatever he did worked. The light went off and all was well as we drove to the Port of Ilwaco.

and at the Port of Ilwaco

at the Port of Ilwaco

We mulched the end of the bed where we had weeded and planted new plants last week.

bed, with empty wheelbarrow

bed, with empty wheelbarrow

And we mulched down at the Port Office on the new-this-past-year south side bed.

3:07 PM:  Oh, how I wanted the glaring blinding sun to go behind Cape Disappointment!

3:07 PM: Oh, how I wanted the glaring blinding sun to go behind Cape Disappointment!

Then we headed over to Mayor Mike’s garden at the south end of Lake Street. There, we used much less mulch than I had thought the garden would need. The beds are quite narrow. I forgot to take a picture, but I did take one of two of my canine friends walking by.

Dwight walking Larry and Big River.

Dwight walking Larry and Big River.

The dogs had had a great time at the riverside park on the east end of town.

With plenty of cow fiber left, we unexpectedly had enough to do more mulching down at the port along Howerton Street.

beds along Howerton north of the Port Office

beds along Howerton north of the Port Office

I do hope to find time Friday or even on Thanksgiving day to do some trimming of the plants here, as this weekend is the first day of the Saturday Christmas Market in a storefront just at the end of these beds (next to Time Enough Books, where the red Christmas Market sign is on the left).

More luscious mulch should help hold moisture next summer.

More luscious mulch should help hold moisture next summer.

We had just enough left to add a smattering of mulch by Queen La De Da’s Art Castle and The Imperial Schooner restaurant at the west end of Howerton.

a Jade Frost Eryngium still blooming, albeit sideways

a Jade Frost Eryngium still blooming, albeit sideways

looking east

looking east

and north

and north

more jet trails

pots ready for crabbing

On the drive down to Ilwaco, I had seen a disconcerting sight in the Fifth Street park’s waterfall quadrant: The Gunnera was DOWN. We did not stop for fear we would not have gotten the manure offloaded before dark, but now we went back to Long Beach to deal with the problem.

unsightly frosted Gunnera

unsightly frosted Gunnera by Benson’s By The Beach Restaurant

I saw a Little Brown Bird dining on the Gunnera seeds!

very busy

very busy

Little Brown Bird

Little Brown Bird

bird

At the back of the park, the lacecap Hydrangea had also been hit hard by unseasonal frost. It is a darn shame because the frost was followed by such summery weather and warmer nights.

a limp hydrangea

a limp hydrangea

We cut back the dead leaves of the Gunnera and tucked some of them over the crown in hope of protecting it from future frost. The seeds are still there for the Little Brown Bird.

Gunnera tucked in for winter

Gunnera tucked in for winter

Here’s something ever so satisfying: The white board in the kitchen tonight.

Today's accomplishment! before and after

Today’s accomplishment! before and after

Also satisfying: the last bulbs came and are now sorted and ready to plant tomorrow. We have one large and one medium bulb batch to plant and two little afterthought batches of fifteen each. When that is done, and The Boreas Inn and Andersen’s RV Park are mulched, one side of the project board will be blank. I am going to shift mulching Jo’s over to the planned work for next February! Then we just have to deal with the list of last clean ups (weeding and cutting plants back) for each garden:

here they all are

here they all are

Jo’s is a big one, as is Long Beach.

And then staycation will begin! Unless….unless….we decide to put in a big garden bed at Erin’s place before our winter break.

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Wednesday, 30 October, 2013

We needed to hit a lot of jobs today in order to clear the deck for Halloween Thursday (partly for the pagan rites of Ilwaco, and partly because a rainy Thursday had been predicted).  But first, a pleasant errand:  delivering some extra tubers of Darmera peltata to Windy Meadows Pottery in Surfside.  The Darmera had come from the edge of the pond in Long Beach’s Fifth Street Park where it always outgrows its space. In the fall, we peel the tubers off the pond’s edge so the crew can clean it.

Windy Meadows Pottery

Windy Meadows Pottery

Although we were sorry that potter Jan Richardson was gone for the day, we could see that she was using the newspaper (in this case, magazine) method of building a new garden area.

 a new area

a new area

As always, we admired the most beautiful raised septic….thingie…on the entire Long Beach Peninsula.

a beautiful solution

a beautiful solution

Nowadays newer septic fields have to have a long rectangular mound; this is the best solution I have seen to landscaping one.

tile

The Darmera is a large leaved northwest native that will enjoy the boggy area, as does the Gunnera whose leaves are much much larger than the Darmera’s!

Jan's Gunnera

Jan’s Gunnera

I believe that Jan created this boggy area with a plastic underlayment.

After our self guided garden tour, we checked on Marilyn’s garden, not far away from Jan’s.

tall Miscanthus at Marilyn's

tall Miscanthus Zebrinus (Zebra Grass) at Marilyn’s

midlevel ornamental seed heads

midlevel ornamental seed heads

low growing Bunny Tail grass

low growing Bunny Tail grass

the jungle effect

the jungle effect

the view of neighbour's garage completely hidden...for now

the view of neighbour’s garage completely hidden…for now

After Marilyn’s we did some more autumn thinning of the garden at the Wiegardt Gallery.  Out with more bad asters!

Cosmos still looking fine on the west side of Wiegardt Gallery

Cosmos still looking fine on the west side of Wiegardt Gallery

Next, Klipsan Beach Cottages garden:

KBC fenced garden

KBC fenced garden

Garden shapes become more clear by the week.

Garden shapes become more clear by the week.

the good lavender aster that keeps on going...

the good lavender aster that keeps on going…

Agapanthus seedheads

Agapanthus seedheads

Verbascum 'Southern Charm'

Verbascum ‘Southern Charm’

golden yew...the woods...the cottages

one of quite a few hydrangeas

one of quite a few hydrangeas

Fuchsia magellanica 'Versicolor' in the dog memorial garden

Fuchsia magellanica ‘Versicolor’ looking ethereal in the dog memorial garden

Misty, Debbie, and Raven (two Great Pyrenees and a black Labrador), all of whom I loved very much,  are buried there.

Hydrangea 'Izu No Hana'

Hydrangea ‘Izu No Hana’

looking in through the deer fence with Persicaria 'Golden Arrow'

looking in through the deer fence with Persicaria ‘Golden Arrow’

I forgot that I had meant to work on the rampant rambling rose….

too much of a good thing

too much of a good thing

so instead we tackled the three maddening ground covers in the lawn border…none of which I planted.  Wild volets, mint, and creeping Jenny.  We did not have time to get it done but it looks much better….

about halfway done

about halfway done

We pulled some shabby lavenders.  They were the wrong plant for here.  Mary agrees that hellebores and heucheras would be a better idea as the bed is shadier than we though it would be.

Sarah kept us entertained throughout the time we worked at KBC….

outside the deer fence

outside the deer fence

and on the driveway

and on the driveway

two

three

Next, we spent a couple of hours at Andersen’s RV Park.

a bright Euonymous elata

a bright Euonymous elata in the west garden

Allan weeded near the restrooms while I did some cutting back down by the garden shed at the east end of the park.

before and after

before and after

I feel inspired to tackle this area extensively next week and hope to remove all of the lady’s mantle and three tired old Stella D’Oro daylilies.

out they must go!

out they must go!

After dumping this week’s wheelbarrow full of debris in the woods, I dug into the new pile of “cow fiber” for the first time so as not to run an empty wheelbarrow back to the shed.

dairy manure...a great mulch

a dent in the pile of dairy manure…a great mulch

Then, at the Anchorage Cottages, we pulled some annuals because I am sick of looking at them even if they have a few nice flowers left.

stemmy and leggy Petunia 'Picotee'...pulled

stemmy and leggy Petunia ‘Picotee’…pulled

Anchorage:  Fuchsia 'Hawkshead' flowering on

Anchorage: Fuchsia ‘Hawkshead’ flowering on

The sky darkened too early for dusk and we were so, so tired.  As we departed, a welcome rain came….meaning we did not have to find another hour of work to do.

blissful rain

blissful rain

We hoped the rain would come and go before Halloween evening as we were ALMOST ready for the Ilwaco extravaganza.  A moderate wind had been predicted, so I would wait till the last couple of hours before trick or treat time to finish the potentially topheavy Corridor of Spooky Plants.

Having been inspired by the tall and spooky creature in a front yard over on Spruce Street, I  had asked Allan to get a sheet up and over the garden tuteur.  Even though it had yellow rose flowers all over it, it looked satisfyingly ghostlike in the dusk.

ghost

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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