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Posts Tagged ‘Home at the Beach’

Friday, 1 May 2015

We were down to the wire for getting Long Beach ready for parade day on Sunday.   Usually, we have Saturday afternoon after the Ilwaco parade to make one more go-round of Long Beach.  This year, I knew the Rhodie Tour would consume all of Saturday.

Before Long Beach, I wanted to get one more old trailing rosemary out of the Ilwaco planters.  To my horror, I realized they were already so dry that either we needed to water them today or on Sunday.  So as not to be worried about them all during Saturday, I decided on watering today.  We did not have time to get the water trailer organized so it had to be bucket watering; that takes at least 45 minutes less than using the water pump trailer but is much harder on aging backs.

dry

dry

Allan using up the water from a jug we carry with us in the van.

Allan using up the water from a jug we carry with us in the van.

We no longer have enough water buckets for this big project; this time, we would skip the street trees.

Filling buckets at the boatyard: We no longer have enough water buckets for this big project; this time, we would skip the street trees.

meanwhile....

meanwhile….

more bucket filling

more bucket filling

the Southern Cross looming overhead

the Southern Cross looming overhead

Having to bucket water was stressful, so we were squabbling from the get go today.  Some days are like that, as any couple who lives and works together would probably tell you.

After we got at least 2 gallons of water onto each of the 26 planters, we were able to head north.  The only thing standing between us and Long Beach was a quick check up on the garden at The Depot Restaurant.  There, we found the painters about to start.  To our surprise, one of them was the neighbour of our client Marilyn up in Surfside.  This makes sense when I think about it, because Marilyn is the mother of Nancy who co-owns the Depot.  (Nancy’s spouse, Michael, is the chef.)

The other painter, here about to pressure wash, was being very careful about the garden.

The other painter, here about to pressure wash, was being very careful about the garden.

We did not linger after deadheading a few narcissi.  Next up was a substantial clean up of the Long Beach welcome sign bed.  It was a mess.  Most of the May flowering tulips that I can usually count on to be in full bloom for parade weekend had already gone over due to our early spring (climate change or a one-off fluke?) and it was too early to plant annuals.

before

before

after.  We treat the tulips as annuals and yank them right out.

after. We treat the tulips as annuals and yank them right out.

The back of the sign still has some tulips in bloom.

The back of the sign still has some tulips in bloom.

In downtown Long Beach, I got my new wheelie cart, provided by blog reader MaryBeth, ready for its first use.  She told me that in the UK, such a cart is called a garden trolley.  As an anglophile I am adopting this usage so garden trolley it is from now on.

My trolley.

My trolley.

I was able to carry a jug of water, a heavy container of Sluggo, a weed bucket, my hand tools, a few plants, and eventually a full bucket of weeds.  The trolley was so perfectly balanced that even when weighed down with weeds, I could move it with two fingers and my thumb.  It made the job almost heavenly.  I want to find a pockety-thing to tie onto the top to hold small tools and maybe seed packets.

I would have been in a world of pain if I had had to carry a heavy bucket of weeds all around town.  Allan and I had split off into separate tasks; he was weeding all the parks, including the gardens at Veterans Field, while I did all the planters and street trees.

Herb N Legend Smoke Shop and a new tattoo parlor

Herb N Legend Smoke Shop and a new tattoo parlor

In front of the smoke shop:  Cerinthe major purpurascens

In front of the smoke shop: Cerinthe major purpurascens

The workers at the Herb N Legend smoke shop are among the  friendliest and nicest of any of the shopkeepers on our planter route. Other especially nice folks are at Captain Bob’s Chowder, the Hungry Harbor Grille, Wind World Kites, and of course NIVA green.

California poppy by the smoke shop

California poppy by the smoke shop.  Yes, the damnable COLD north wind was blowing something fierce.

Sparaxis by the smoke shop

Sparaxis by the smoke shop

and Narcissus 'Baby Moon'

and Narcissus ‘Baby Moon’

Last night, driving through town to go to dinner at the Cove, I sang a little song to Baby Moon thanking it for still being in bloom for parade weekend.  It started so early this year that I was sure it would all be done by now.  About one third of the Baby Moons are still blooming.

The little dog who is the mascot of the smoke shop likes to delicately pick snails and bugs out of the planter.  He treats the plants carefully and is an excellent helper.

dog

my little camera shy friend

The planters all took much longer than I thought to remove every little weed.  By the time I got to the southernmost one, I was grateful to be able to nip in to use the loo at Northwest Financial, the business owned by our friend Shelly Pollock (who spearheads the Grass Roots Garbage Gang beach clean ups).  If you live locally, and need any help sorting out your ACA medical insurance, her assistance is invaluable and free.

Northwest Financial and Insurance

Northwest Financial and Insurance, and a rhododendron

tiny cupped narcissi...my favourite...still in bloom in front of Kompton's Mini Mart.

tiny cupped narcissi…my favourite…still in bloom in front of Kompton’s Mini Mart.

Tulip 'Florette' still blooming.

Tulip ‘Florette’ still blooming.

Florette is a star this year.

Florette is a star this year.

Asphodel going strong in Fifth Street Park

Asphodel going strong in Fifth Street Park

Allan was still toiling at Fifth Street Park.  I helped a bit, and he moved on to the parks on Third Street.  I planted some fill in sweet pea seeds at the back of the northwest quadrant.

Fifth Street Park

Fifth Street Park

Captain Bob's Chowder

Captain Bob’s Chowder

across from the carousel: windblown Tulip 'Akebono' barely holding on

across from the carousel: windblown Tulip ‘Akebono’ barely holding on.  You can see the flag blowing straight out in 20 mph the north wind.  Brrrr.

The only thing I do not like about living at the beach is the accursed cold wind.  My friends who are sailors are able to appreciate it.

Because I’m working on a “Rhodie Driving Tour” album for the Music in the Gardens Tour Facebook page, I got some photos of the rhododendrons in the parks at 3rd Street.

SW corner of park

SW corner of park

This big bright red one has bloomed and dropped its petals.

This big bright red one has bloomed and dropped its petals.

The parks department wants me to prune that rhodo, above, down to the height of the fence and I do. not. want. to do it.

 

Northwest corner behind the gazebo

Northwest corner behind the gazebo

with the new river rock landscaping

with the new river rock landscaping

from across the street, looking west at those two rhododendron lined parks

from across the street, looking west at those two rhododendron lined parks

behind me as I took the previous photo: Lewis and Clark square

behind me as I took the previous photo: Lewis and Clark square

The wall encircling the back of Lewis and Clark Square has a plaque for the places the explorers visited.

The wall encircling the back of Lewis and Clark Square has  plaques for the places the explorers visited.

Allan was far enough ahead of me to now to have already weeded the little park behind the wall.

Allan was far enough ahead of me to now to have already weeded the little park behind the wall.

He had found a bird nest in one of the shrubs (Allan's photo)

He had found a bird nest in one of the shrubs (Allan’s photo)

behind the wall, viewed from across the street by Veterans Field

behind the wall, viewed from across the street by Veterans Field

flower detail (Allan's photo)

flower detail (Allan’s photo)

street planter by Lewis and Clark Square, lots of little violas have reseeded

street planter by Lewis and Clark Square, lots of little violas have reseeded

In about a week, we will begin the annuals planting of all these street planters.  I thought of planting some diascias this week and then thought why? when plants along the edge would likely be sat upon during the parade.

As I worked my way north, I saw something mighty cute in the window of the Cottage Bakery.

cats

kittycar

I checked out the new location of Home at the Beach, now inside the Sandpiper Mall just south of the pharmacy.

Home at the Beach's new shop

Home at the Beach’s new shop

inside the tiny mall, a bench with a touching memorial plaque

inside the tiny mall, a bench with a touching memorial plaque

bench

Across the street, I noticed and ignored, for now, a big weedy sedge that has snuck in under the street trees.

I did not have a tool strong enough to remove the weedy sedge.  Next week, its time will come.

I did not have a tool strong enough to remove the weedy sedge. Next week, its time will come.  It has comouflaged itself among narciss and schizostylis.

Geranium 'A.T. Johnson' redeeming itself under a street tree.  It's one of the plants I have gone off over the years due to its weedy habits.

Geranium ‘A.T. Johnson’ redeeming itself under a street tree. It’s one of the plants I have gone off over the years due to its weedy habits.

in the window of the Long Beach Pharmacy

in the window of the Long Beach Pharmacy  (Chemist, in the UK)

Helianthemum 'Wisley Pink' about to bloom with a red leaved Armeria

a pink Helianthemum  about to bloom with a red leaved Armeria in a street planter by the stoplight

Across from Dennis Company in the northernmost block

Across from Dennis Company in the northernmost block with Tulip ‘Formosa’

By the time I got to the final block, Allan had finished the City Hall gardens and Coulter Park’s street side gardens and was helping to finish the planters.  The tulip ‘Formosa’ is in some places just starting to bloom.  I planted lots of it this year, but clearly not enough.

As we prepare to drive off, I notice a bright deciduous azalea behind the Coulter Park historic train depot.

As we prepare to drive off, I notice a bright deciduous azalea behind the Coulter Park historic train depot.

Our very last task, as the sun was about to set, was to check on the planters on the Bolstadt beach approach.

one of the beach planters

one of the beach planters with two heights of armeria (sea thrift)

On the way home we had a look at the sunset from the Seaview beach approach road near the Depot Restaurant.

sunset over a monkey tree

sunset over a monkey tree

One last rhododendron photo in Seaview, just south of the Sou'wester Lodge.

One last rhododendron photo in Seaview, just south of the Sou’wester Lodge.

Back when the house above belonged to an elderly artist named Marge Horner, I used to mow her lawn and clean for her occasionally.  I miss her.

All our parade and tour preparations were as done as they could be, and we could collapse and look forward to the rhodie tour tomorrow.  We would miss the Saturday Ilwaco parade because of the rhodie tour.  Because of needing time at home, we would skip the Sunday parade.  You can enjoy last year’s parade here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Friday, 1 August 2014

The Depot Restaurant

Once a week, we must deadhead the cosmos and annuals at the Depot Restaurant in Seaview.

Depot: east wall of dining room

Depot: east wall of dining room

Resolved: the plant more lilies in this garden for fragrance in the evening as diners arrive.  Now there is only this one and one other.

Resolved: the plant more lilies in this garden for fragrance in the evening as diners arrive. Now there is only this one and one other.

Cosmos right up to the parking spots

Cosmos right up to the parking spots; the sprinkler system misses the first foot along the log, so we have to water that strip with the hose.

and the usual weekly view

and the usual weekly view

Eryngium 'Jade Frost'

Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’

Erin’s Garden

We had time today to add three Cosmos ‘Antiquity’, one verbena bonariensis, and one chocolate cosmos to the garden boat.

Looking at the photo, I think we should have pulled out the dry cosmos that had not gotten enough water...

Looking at the photo, I think we should have pulled out the dry cosmos that had not gotten enough water…

Yes, we should have...but then we would have needed more plants to fill in.

Yes, we should have…but then we would have needed more plants to fill in.

Long Beach

As the summer wears on, the deadheading of those Agyranthemums because more time consuming.

the welcome side

the welcome side

the thank you side

the thank you side

Next, the watering of all the Long Beach planters along the main street.  Today Allan watered the street trees and a few planters to the north end of town and I did all the rest.

Cute shops like The Wooden Horse provide eye candy along the sidewalk.

Cute shops like The Wooden Horse provide eye candy along the sidewalk.

I was tired of limping along so I stopped at my favourite shop, NIVA green, to buy an artistic cane made by Heather Ramsay.

at NIVA green, an outdoor chandelier by Heather

at NIVA green, an outdoor chandelier by Heather

It turns out that Heather’s shop assistant used to be the gardener for macabre writer William S Burroughs, in Kansas.  William S was a friend, at least through correpondence, of my delightful Seattle housemate of ten years. Wilum Hopfrog Pugmire.  Or so my aging memory recalls.  It all seemed kind of cosmic as I strolled out with my snazzy new cane.

The glimpse of the many wonders of NIVA green

The glimpse of the many wonders of NIVA green

the cane in question

the cane in question, golf club and glass doorknob

Long ago, in the early 80s, I read an interview with The Ramones in which Joey said he had claimed to collect glass doorknobs and then fans had inundated him with them.  Between thoughts of Wilum and of Joey, I had some reminiscing to do as I watered.  Having a cane was really helpful, so much so that my fear that I would leave it behind on a planter was unlikely, as I missed its comfort  the moment I stepped away from it.

that luscious planter in front of the smoke shop

that luscious planter in front of the smoke shop, viewed from the east side of the street as I work my way south.

the bench in front of Home at the Beach gift shop

the bench in front of Home at the Beach gift shop

Later, going north on the west side of the threet,  I got to the planter just south of the smoke shop and found a painted sage pulled out and left to die.  The smoke shop employees emerged when I got to that planter and told me theirs had been hit also; they were upset as they try to defend it from folks who pester the plants.

finger blight of the day

finger blight of the day

Boreas Inn

After the watering of Long Beach, we spent just a little time at the Boreas Inn at 6th North doing some weeding and deadheading.

A friend of Susie and Bill was doing some watering.

A friend of Susie and Bill was doing some watering.

Agastache and Eryngium

Agastache and Eryngium

looking east to the inn and hot tub room

looking east to the inn and hot tub room


 

On the way home, we got tacos to go from the new Streetside Taco shop in Long Beach…an early evening snack, as we eat dinner at around ten PM or later.

delicious

delicious

Now we would have two days off (except for Allan having to water the Ilwaco planters) and I had every intention of getting massive amounts of weeding done at home.

We heard later there was quite a sunset.  I was busy blogging.  I had finally finished writing about the last gardens on the Music in the Gardens tour and moved on to another sort of garden tour, the Pink Poppy wedding..  Kathleen Shaw was down to her cottage for the weekend and got a photo of the sunset which she shared with the next day.

looking west from Kathleen's cottage, a few miles north of Long Beach

looking west from Kathleen’s cottage, a few miles north of Long Beach, photo by Kathleen Shaw

 

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Saturday, 7 December 20 2013, part one

  Snow Postscript

Susie Goldsmith of The Boreas Inn sent me three photos of the garden in snow, too late to go in yesterday’s post.

Boreas, looking west from the end of the garden

Boreas, looking west from the end of the garden

Boreas, looking east toward the hot tub room.  The garden has disappeared.

Boreas, looking east toward the hot tub room. The garden has disappeared.

Boreas southwest deck

Boreas southwest deck

Looks like the snow caught Susie by surprise with the pillows still out there!

Thanks, Susie!

We began our day with a quick stop at the Ilwaco Saturday Christmas Market just to get some photos for Discover Ilwaco.

market

I noticed that the newly painted house just south of Tom and Judy’s (that has recently been remodeled with a view dormer) almost matches a house further up the hill.

houses of blue

houses of blue in our pretty town

We stopped by Olde Towne to do a compost bucket switch.

Luanne made this tree of mussel shells...collected when she visited her daughter in Maine.

Luanne made this tree of mussel shells…collected when she visited her daughter in Maine.

She's also spray painted these Alliums I brought her some while ago from the boatyard garden.

She’s also spray painted these Alliums I brought her some while ago from the boatyard garden.

I still did not have time to stay and celebrate staycation at Olde Towne, as we had to get on to…

The Peninsula Gift Shop Tour 

I am not much of a shopper (except for the garden), so when I find a little gift shop that I like, it is special to me.   I had been asked by Karyn Zigler of Home at the Beach to take some photos of their Saturday gift shop tour which included some of my favourite places.   The shops on this tour were not the kind that just sell “Long Beach” t shirts and other tourist mementos.

The weather caused me dire suspense because I do not like to go out in snow and ice at all, at all, at all.  If I had not said I would take photos, I would not have set a toe into Long Beach.  (The sidewalks and roads in Ilwaco, in contrast, had already lost their slick cover.)

Allan humoured me by finding parking spots that allowed me to get into the shops without walking on anything white.  It was rather an embarrassment when, while inside the shop Beautiful Things, I saw a car park and two ladies more elderly than I get out and walk sure footed over what to me had been impossible ice.

Here are some of the lovely objects that I saw.

Home at the Beach

618 South Pacific Avenue, Long Beach

home decorating display room

home decorating display room

Owners Kathy and Karen have a business of interior design, as well, with flooring, window coverings, and whatnot.  I love the floor in the room above.  It’s about $3 more per square foot than what we were thinking of using, but the pieces are sturdier and I like the pale colour and the realistic grained texture.

clear crystal decor with snowy background

clear crystal decor with snowy background

Here is an excellent motto for staycation

Here is an excellent motto for staycation!

sandpipers

sandpipers

Kathy and Karyn once explained to me once the difference between nautical and coastal, or beachy…

This is nautical, with red and blue, and boats.

This is nautical, with red and blue, and boats, and flags.

Most of "Home at the Beach" is more blue, white, sandy, and pale grey.

Most of “Home at the Beach” is more blue, white, sandy, and pale grey.

These guys are just a touch too silly for me!

These guys are just a touch too silly for me!

Lots of happy shoppers turned out despite the weather.

Lots of happy shoppers turned out despite the weather.

treats

treats

Outside, the city planter, with its annuals removed, lay under a smooth blanket of snow.

Note the scary icy street!

Note the scary icy street!

Beautiful Things

Two doors north, a new shop has just opened.

Beautiful Things

Beautiful Things

Karyn of Home at the Beach with the owner of Beautiful Things

Karyn of Home at the Beach with Jude, the owner of Beautiful Things

The owner does this skilled upholstery.

The owner does this skilled upholstery.

I like the artificial tree.

I like the artificial tree.

white on white

white on white

crystal with snow backdrop

crystal with snow backdrop

The Wooden Horse

I like the stuff in The Wooden Horse shop at 311 South Pacific so much that I picked it to be the January ’14 cash mob location.

The Wooden Horse...I like the pallet shelving

The Wooden Horse…I like the pallet shelving

rocks

kindness and celebration

The shop is owned by the men who also own Inn at Harbour Village in Ilwaco (and Stormin’ Norman’s kite shop) and who bring us the annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner.

wh

treats

treats

Wooden...pigs

Wooden…pigs

Hello to Linda, in red, a regular reader of this blog.

Hello to Linda, in red, a regular reader of this blog.

As we left The Wooden Horse to go to the next shop, we encountered the Ilwaco “Epic Echo” Glee club just heading our way, so back into Wooden Horse we went to listen to them caroling.

Glee!

Glee!

caroling

caroling

glee

glee club

glee club

M & D Designs

Just a few doors north at M & D Designs:

M & D Designs

M & D Designs

This shop of local arts and crafts will be the February cash mob site.

This shop of local arts and crafts will be the February cash mob site.

delicate pine needle baskets

delicate pine needle baskets

stained glass, backed with snow

stained glass, backed with snow

Allan had got a photo of the Fifth Street Park one block to the south:

the clam squirting control device is coming along!

the clam squirting control device is coming along!

the scary icy sidewalk areas he helped me avoid

the scary icy sidewalk areas he helped me avoid

one of the planters we recently redid is completely smooth.

one of the planters we recently redid is completely smooth.

Next to it, an old planting of shrubs in one of the planters we want to re-do.

Next to it, an old planting of shrubs in one of the planters that we want to re-do.

NIVA green

Our very favourite shop of all time came next on the tour:  New, Vintage, Inspired, Artful, and environmentally conscious with lots of artistic upcycling.

NIVA green

NIVA green at 104 Pacific North

We recommend our friend Sarah's children's fantasy series, The Marble Game.

We recommend our friend Sarah’s children’s fantasy series, The Marble Game.

paper lamps

paper lamps

niva1

a shop full of colour and fascination

a shop full of colour and fascination

bird feeders

bird feeders

niva

niva

Owner and artist Heather Ramsay makes string tins with scissors:

string tins with scissors

one of the best presents!

and lamps out of tins:

Heather's lamps

Heather’s lamps

Heather had some wonderful cookies from the Danish bakery in Astoria.  As always, I found a few good presents to buy AND we got a nice bar of soap as a door prize.

Stylin’ Consignment Shop

I honestly thought that because of the weather, we would not make it any further north than NIVA green.  Earlier, Allan had expressed some concern about not wanting to wreck our nice van.  And yet…we heard the roads were better the further north one drove, so we decided to test out the conditions a wee bit further north at Stylin’, 600 N Pacific.

Santa at Stylin'

Santa was just about to drive off, heading from Stylin’ to NIVA green

The shop is a cute little cottage.

The shop is a in cute little cottage.

The blue, clear sky is the culprit for our cold weather!

inside Stylin'

It amazes me shop owner Jan finds such nice items to sell on consignment.

This picture frame caught my eye.

This picture frame caught my eye.

Never could I wear such shoes, but they are cute.

PeninsulaMap13We decided to be very bold and head all the way to the two shops in Ocean Park.  I had been so sure we would not get to all the shops that I had not even gotten myself a “passport” at Home at the Beach.  Allan had one, and if he got a stamp from each shop, he’d get entered into a raffle for some sort of prizes.  We both would have had a good shot because the weather was keeping the north enders mostly at the north end and the south enders down here!  Oh well!  So on to Ocean Park.

Allan had lived in colder climes, Spokane and Idaho, and has experience driving in worse weather than this.

the road going north

the road going north

On the way we talked about our fortitude in going out in such weather to support local shops with picture taking, if not a lot of buying, and wished that more than 23 people had come to see our garden on the Edible Garden tour!  When the weather was lovely!  Of course, the shop keepers can’t because they are always working during the various garden tours.  Linda from The Wooden Horse guarantees she will get garden tour Saturday off next year.  (We can’t complain about attendance when we were on the BIG garden tour, Music in the Gardens, as we had more than 500 people come through that day.)

Beach Home Old and New

On Bay Avenue, Ocean Park

On Bay Avenue, Ocean Park

Beach Home Old and New

Beach Home Old and New

home

wintry scene

wintry scene

If I didn't already have too many little things, I would have to have these.

If I didn’t already have too many little things, I would have to have these.

garden decorations

garden decorations

These are said to be sturdily assembled, unlike others some friends have purchased elsewhere that have disintegrated in short order.

pink, with a little teapot

pink, with a little teapot

sunlight and snow

sunlight and snow

local photography

local photography

Sweet Williams on Bay

A few blocks to the west sits Sweet Williams, one of the original  fine gift shops on the Peninsula.

Sweet Williams on Bay

Sweet Williams on Bay

in the front window

in the front window

east side window

east side window

east

Just across the street I saw a seasonal vignette at Adelaide’s Coffee: a Christmas tree in a car.

ad

Owner Katie Williams loves Polish pottery

Owner Katie Williams loves Polish pottery

Our client and friend Mary of Klipsan Beach Cottages is close friends with Katie AND collects Polish pottery, so we have had a good look at many of these gorgeous pieces and have gotten some as cherished gifts over the years.

Katie also carries of an assortment of delicious truffles.

Katie also carries of an assortment of delicious truffles.

Sweet Williams

Sweet Williams

sw

Now for the drive back south.  Allan would definitely get his passport completely stamped!

heading south to Long Beach

heading south to Long Beach

Long Beach Pharmacy

Allan popped into the Long Beach Pharmacy gift shop.

Long Beach Pharmacy

Long Beach Pharmacy

a display by our friend Artist Don Nisbett

a display by our friend Artist Don Nisbett

I looked at the icy parking lot from across the street and delegated the photo-taking at the pharmacy to Allan while I entered the last shop of our tour.

Deux Chapeaux

I’ve always found Deux Chapeaux to be a good place to find a greeting card, bubble bath, and elegant soap for a present.

cards

cards2

cards

display

Shop owner Sharon has excellent taste in cards and exquisite taste in women’s and children’s clothing.

cute children's clothes

cute children’s clothes

The cutest!

The cutest!

kids2

I have rarely had children in my life (since being one).  I wonder if children themselves get as much of a kick out of adorable little clothes like these as the adults do who dress them up.  I hope so.

The women’s clothes are richly coloured and gorgeously far removed from any sort of life I have led.  I think this is the only place on the entire Peninsula where one could find garments this lovely.

tops

tops

The blue one really speaks to me!

Sharon's shop

Sharon’s shop

 Deux Chapeaux

Deux Chapeaux

When Allan joined me, he completed his passport.

pass

passport

With 45 minutes to spare before the end of the tour, we slid back through the streets of Long Beach where the ice remained worse than anywhere else.

near Fifth Street Park

driving south near Fifth Street Park

We only had one scary sliding moment when trying to stop for a pedestrian who wanted to cross in the middle of the much icier block by Dennis Company;  he saw we were not going to be able to stop and just waved us on.

Fifth Street

Fifth Street

We now had about an hour and a half before the big Ilwaco event of the season:  The lighting of the Crab Pot Christmas Tree.

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Tuesday, 29 October, 2013

I awoke to white frost on the back lawn, as predicted.  All the tender plants in pots were safely in the greenhouse.  The ones that I want to save, anyway:  scented geraniums, tender salvias…

frost

frosty morning

Great, thought I, the annuals will perhaps be done in Long Beach.  I have wearied of their tired looking appearance; they have still been looking too colourful to pull as it might make shopkeepers and passersby said if I dispose of them them prematurely.

But NO!  They still look mostly wonderful.

painted sage, Agyr. 'Butterfly', nasturtium

painted sage, Agyr. ‘Butterfly’, nasturtium

still a tangle of colour by Home at the Beach

still a tangle of colour by Home at the Beach

Even a few of the cosmos still look good.

Even a few of the cosmos still look good.

Allan cut back the Panicum ‘Heavy Metal‘ ornamental grass back in the one street tree under which it grows.  I like the name of the grass and its metallic sheen.  However, I think that to most people it probably looks weedy.

Heavy Metal grass

Heavy Metal grass

This particular tree has no working water and has to be bucket watered from a nearby planter.

The park by Marsh’s Free Museum and one of our favourite little cafés, Captain Bob’s Chowder, still looks fine.

obelisk tiles by Renee O'Connor

obelisk tiles by Renee O’Connor

The work in the frying pan park is coming along….By spring, that clam statue will spout every hour on the hour again.

park

Allan took a break from Long Beach city work and pulled Geranium ‘A.T. Johnson’ from the Summer House  garden while I checked the rest of the planters.  I swear I did not plant the darn hardy geranium at Summer House.  It probably had one little seedling inside another plant.

Below:  Allan stands where a rose trellis should go IF Erin (who owns this vacation rental) wants to keep the rampant climbing rose in there:

I asked him to look like a trellis, but he is sideways.

I asked him to look like a trellis, but he is sideways.

Then he dropped me off to tidy up the Veterans Field garden while he dumped debris.

Veterans Field garden

Veterans Field garden

still very faintly red white and blue

still very faintly red white and blue

We had an appointment at NW Financial and Insurance regarding the Affordable Care Act (which I believe will be very beneficial to us).  The main website was down again, even though it had been working all day.

My friend Bella greeted me at the insurance office!

My friend Bella greeted me at the insurance office!

The best thing I have read about this is:  “War is a crisis.  Poverty is a crisis.”  And then something about the computer problem being an inconvenience.  We will go back next week.  If anyone local (Southwest Washington or Northwest Oregon) needs help figuring out the Affordable Care Act paperwork, Shelly Pollock is a wonderful helper and her services are free.

We concluded our work day by pulling some Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ foliage clumps and a doing a bit of weeding on the Bolstadt beach approach.

Bolstadt approach buoy

Bolstadt approach buoy

two birds

two birds

another two birds

another two birds

bird

Bolstadt beach approach garden, looking toward town

This walk is so popular with townfolk and tourists alike.  One can walk up Sid Snyder Boulevard ten blocks south, then along the boardwalk with its view of the beach and back down this street….or vice versa.

rugosa rose autumn colour

rugosa rose autumn colour

with dwarf mugo pine

with dwarf mugo pine

Something amazing happened when I pulled a weed from the easternmost Bolstadt planter….

full of chocolate mint planted back in volunteer days

full of chocolate mint planted back in volunteer days

The mint started to peel up just like taking up a carpet!   I was thrilled!!

before and after

before and after

Next year we can make this planter right by the arch look so much better.

Next year we can make this planter right by the arch look so much better.

While Allan tidied that up, I cut back a few lily stalks on the south side of city hall and observed with dismay that a purple ajuga had gone aggressively running through the whole bed.

Anyone want some purple ajuga??

Anyone want some purple ajuga??  will fix this later

Just west of city hall, reflections of sunlight fell on the sign for the upcoming new coffee shop.  I was excited to see that Pink Poppy Bakery’s logo had been added to the sign.  My ultimate loyalty still likes with Ilwaco’s Olde Towne coffee café but I will love being able to get Pink Poppy treats while working in Long Beach.

Akari Space

Akari Space

Although I could tell a great sunset was brewing, the dumping of debris had to take priority.

looking west from city hall

looking west from city hall

While at the city works yard, we could see the sunset developing.

over the water treatment plant

over the water treatment plant

With work done, we went back to Bolstadt.

Another sunset watching group had gathered on the big picnic shelter.

crows

closeup

The sunset started as a moody grey and pink one, and I thought it would continue that way.

Allan’s photos:

bird

grey

grey

grass

west of the boardwalk

buoy

my photos:

from the end of the Bolstadt approach

from the end of the Bolstadt approach

pink

boardwalk

boardwalk

band of colour

band of colour

Thinking it was fading, we turned to go back to town and saw the tail lights of the cars of other sunset watchers driving away….

Long Beach from the boardwalk

Long Beach from the boardwalk

One glance back and we turned to the west again as the colour suddenly intensified.

colour

bright

And then it did fade.

last

At home, I took a quick walk along Spruce and Lake Streets to check out progress in the Ilwaco flatlands Halloween preparations.

the J's house across the street

the J’s house across the street from ours

on Spruce

on Spruce

Soon would come the yearly Halloween extravaganza.

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Not much got done today to progress toward the end of the planting of the annuals.  There are certain obligations that I have placed upon myself, one of which is taking photos every Saturday from May through September of the Port of Ilwaco Saturday Market.  Allan filled in once when I was at the Hardy Plant weekend, so the only day we have both missed since 2010 was last year when our garden was on the Peninsula garden tour.

Today I made it to the market almost at opening time (ten AM, early for me) because I had another place to be at 11.

On the way out our front gate, I noticed this stunning tulip had just come out in my garden.

Texas Gold?

Texas Gold?

Just around the corner, a mown path led enticingly into the neighbourhood’s lost garden.

garden of an empty house

garden of an empty house

At the market, the De Asis produce stand had asparagus.

fresh spears

fresh spears

I try each week to get dog as well as people and products photos. These same two brown Boston Terriers had walked by us in Long Beach yesterday while we worked on the planter outside Home at the Beach.

parade of dogs

parade of dogs

To stick with a gardening theme, here is a bouquet at the Niceland booth:

Niceland

Niceland

Some bright wooden flowers at a booth that sells wooden toys:

flowers

Gnome doors from The Wood Elf:

Wood Elf

Quite a good price on a Wiegela:

Wiegela

Plants from The English Nursery (located in Seaview):

and a bear

stone vases:

stone

Colour coordination with the next door t shirt booth:

colour

One of the regular booths had added a line of bright and clever planter boxes:

planters

Another regular has gnomes:

too big for the gnome doors

too big for the gnome doors

…and decorative globes with sayings on them; I like these very much and should get some for my garden.

love much

Pink Poppy Bakery always has flowers as well as treats:

Pink Poppy calla lilies

Pink Poppy calla lilies

This week I was in time to get a like bundt cake.  It looked like they were soon to sell out; no wonder I did not get one when I ambled in at 2 PM last week.

lime cake

lime cake

I pulled a few small shotweeds out of our new garden by the port office but did not have time for a thorough weeding.

port office garden

port office garden

I need to get some painted sage into there.

Hurrying home, I saw that the California poppies are just starting to bloom in the Howerton Street gardens.

along Howerton

along Howerton

Then we were off to the Peninsula Cash Mob event at the Home at the Beach shop in Long Beach.  As an organizer of the mobs (where shoppers boost a business with small purchases on a prearranged day), I feel the need to be there to take photos.  Yesterday, we had redone the planters in front and they looked fresh and pretty.

in front of Home at the Beach

in front of Home at the Beach

making a purchase

making a purchase

I won’t say what I bought because it is a future gift for Montana Mary, who might read this!

Our friend Kathleen S. joined us.  She just may have found a house to buy in Surfside, thus possibly becoming a step closer to being a full time Peninsulite!   In fact, she would be more of a Peninsulite than we are because technically Ilwaco is not part of the Long Beach Peninsula.

We ate at Benson’s By The Beach Restaurant, as there is almost always a café associated with the cash mob event.  I got a very different view of the Fifth Street Park gardens we often work in.

window seat

Kathleen and Allan at our window seat table

Years ago, Montana Mary herself wrote a letter to the editor of our local paper based on her experience sitting in the park.

letter

window seat

window seat view

our gunnera

our gunnera

We had a great view of tourists taking pictures of each other by the giant frying pan.

frying pan

At one o clock we simply had to roust ourselves out of all this fun and go to work, back to the planting of some annuals at The Anchorage Cottages (from whence Kathleen had just checked out to return to her city home up north).

Anchorage planting

Anchorage planting

That poor Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ in the small pot is rather bringing down the tone and will probably have go be ousted in the next round of planting.

tulips still blooming

“Greenland’ tulips still blooming

Tulip 'Green Star' has had a long bloom time.

Tulip ‘Green Star’ has had a long bloom time.

Agyranthemum 'Madeira Deep Pink'

Agyranthemum ‘Madeira Deep Pink’

After the Anchorage, we continued north, gathering up more Cosmos and painted sage at The Planter Box.   I was hoping to get as far as Klipsan Beach Cottages today but it was not to be.

We wanted to make sure the tulips at Golden Sands Assisted Living were deadheaded for Mother’s Day guests and were saddened to find that no one, no one at all, had done any watering there during the dry spell.    I thought we had had that all clear by last fall, that dry weather meant watering simply must begin.  I should have known better.

One of the elderly residents commented to Allan, “The plants need water!”  Our mission there is to create a beautiful garden for people who have had to leave their own gardens behind.  Some of the  plants we had transplanted from Cheri’s garden last time had survived except for the phlox.  It will probably come back but looks terrible:

wilty phlox

wilty phlox (with annoying beach strawberry)

I was, however, quite pleased that our plantings of mostly free and simple plants had held up well.

The cow fiber mulch helped.

The cow fiber mulch helped.

But all three birdbaths were bone dry, and no one even had the key to turn on the second faucet.  Fortunately, we had enough hose for Allan to hose water the whole garden from one spigot.  That left only one of us to weed.  I removed a wheelbarrow load of creeping sorrel and that infuriating wild strawberry.

An attendent walked by and cheerfully told me she had eaten the flowers of all the chives.  I went from being the nice gardener who had provided said chives to the mean (but trying to say it very nicely) gardener who asked that the chives in the ornamental garden be allowed to have pretty purple flowers without being eaten.  I felt bad about the whole thing but I want those flowers in there!

chive flowers all gone

chive flowers all gone

I pointed out that the chives outside the ornamental quadrants were up for grabs but then realized how puny they are compared to the luscious ones that have been fed and manured.

pitiful chives

pitiful chives outside the flower areas

This brings me to the problem of all the areas outside our four quadrants….a mess of weeds among some free daylilies we bunged in there last year.

just horrid!

just horrid!

I’m not sure the work budget even allows for the expenditure of time to get this all cleaned up, even though we charge considerably less here out of memory to my mom, for whom we started the courtyard flower gardens during the year she lived here.

My vision of a river of blue Geranium ‘Rozanne’ down the center of the drainage area was just ridiculous; they will never get enough water to grow well.

a futile plan

a futile plan

I tend to feel pretty discouraged by the lack of watering here.  The maintenance fellow, we are told, will set up the sprinklers on Monday, and we hope they will have better coverage than the cute and twirly but ineffective sprinklers of last year.

We had brought a few annuals to plant but took them away with us; we’ll wait till some rain (we hope!!) gets the soil damp deeper than on the surface (please!) before we inflict this environment on new plant babies.

Can this enclosed, deer-safe and wind-safe and every so promising garden ever become the paradise that I imagine it could be?  I refuse to give up on it.  It is better this year than last year so maybe there is hope that the dream can be achieved.

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On the way to another day of planting in Long Beach (that’s Washington, not California), we stopped to plant two Diascia ‘Blue Denim’ (or ‘Denim Blue’) by Azure salon.  That’s our little theme for Ilwaco:  yellow or orange flowers for the yellow café, blue for the Azure Salon.  Then a quick compost bucket switch at Olde Towne Café, where we found that great strides had been made over the past week in the antiques rooms at the back of the shop.

looking into the back rooms

looking into the back rooms

I took some photos for their Facebook page but did not have time for a coffee break.  In fact, I had awoken at eight AM in great anxiety about work but did not feel I should wake Allan early because I would be rather annoyed if he got a burst of early morning work energy and woke me early.  (We are both chronic night owls and at least we are compatible in our schedule;  my ex the famous mystery writer Chris used to be up, breakfasted, and returning from several yard sales before I even opened my eyes on Saturday morning!  I always felt I had missed out on some good yard sale acquisitions.)

But I digress.  My anxiety was mainly because I suddenly felt we simply MUST redo the planter in front of the charming shop called Home at the Beach before they are the featured  Peninsula Cash Mob site on Saturday.  And then the planter across the street would have to match.  Both were full of Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’.  That’s a perennial I once loved and now view with suspicion.  I once thought it was a good plant because it does not spread like the similar orange montbretia, , but it will take over a spot and spear through all surrounding plants.  I regret ever having planted it in any of the Long Beach planters.

Sheila and I attended a Hardy Plant Society study weekend where Adrian Bloom, whose nursery introduced ‘Lucifer’ to the gardening world, was the keynote speaker.  The emcee introduced him partly with the questions “How many of you grow Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’…and how many of you are trying to get rid of it?”  The audience laughed as we almost all raised our hands to both questions.  Adrian defended it as a very good plant (which it really is if one has the room).  He also is the one who introduced many many other great plants including one of my all time favourites, Geranium ‘Rozanne’.

So first we watered and added some annuals to the southernmost street planters and planted some cosmos (tall) in the Fifth Street park and then….the difficult task began.

before

before

When it blooms, the Crocosmia gets so tall it somewhat blocks the view of the shop.  I want prettier things with longer than a three week bloom period for the nice owners.

Allan begins to dig

Allan begins to dig

The last time we removed Crocosmia from a planter, our shovel broke (and the manufacturer, Fiskars, honoured their lifetime guarantee!)

the planter across the street

the planter across the street

These planters were two of four that I did as a volunteer way back in ’99 or 2000 when the planters were first installed.  They were installed without a maintenance plan other than perhaps volunteers would take them over, and later every other one was replaced with a street tree.  Then city administrator Nabiel Shawa said mine were “magnificent” and that’s what began the series of events that got me my Long Beach gardening job.  Originally the one across the street had no working water so was planted to be drought tolerant with Santolina, Geranium macrorrhizum, variegated bulbous oat grass and the Crocosmia and some Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’.  It worked, because the plantings have lasted for all these many years, but I am just tired of the same old thing.

While Allan dug (it took well over an hour if not more!), I watered and planted Cosmos and painted sage and some sanvitalia and calibrachoa ‘Lemon Slice’ (yum!) in several of the planters on the blocks to the south.

empty centers

empty centers

The lavenders and sedums around the edges are just fine with me and can stay.

A trip to The Planter Box got us some painted sage and diascia and agyranthemums and at The Basket Case we added some different agyrs and different diascia and a lot of Cosmos ‘Sonata’ (the short one).

Fred and Nancy of The Basket Case have us shop in the back greenhouse so we don’t deplete the displays up front of all our favourites, and while there we met their son’s lovely old dog, Biggins.

a very sweet boy

a very sweet boy

And here are the planters later in the day, all nicey nice.

after

after

across the street, after

across the street, after

The old Adopt a Planter sign has not showed for years since it was covered with the hardy geranium!

historic sign

historic sign

We took a short breather to consume the delicious cupcakes that Home at the Beach owners Kathy and Karyn had brought us from the new Sweet Celebrations cupcake shop.  Then we kept going till 8 PM, watering and planting.  We parked for part of the time near the new Veterans Field garden which looks more filled in than last week.

Veterans Field

Veterans Field

Veterans Field

Perhaps the worst of annuals hell is already over.  Planting the Long Beach planters is the hardest spring planting job because of working in traffic, watching for cars, people honking in a friendly way (but still startling!) and just the sheer size of it.  We will go through again adding more but the basic annuals planting is done now.

And now only ONE planter has lots of Crocosmia.   It is in front of Wind World Kites and the owner actually loves the plant and does not mind the way it sort of hides the shop at its peak, so we will leave it there for him.  It is also under several street trees and tends to bloom like fireworks right around the fourth of July, making the town look festive.

The dry weather has put us behind on our other jobs (watering Long Beach took precedence) so tomorrow after taking photos at Saturday Market and Cash Mob we hope to get to at least two, preferably three gardens up north.

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My rainy day off did not materialize in the morning. While the lazy side of me regrets that, the part that wants to be caught up on work was happy to get out there and get stuff done. So off we went to work despite a very cold and blustery wind.

I did take a brief moment to admire the front garden before leaving. That pointed bud of the peachy tulip just amazed me with its swirled petals. I wonder if it will ever actually open!

This might be 'Blushing Lady' single late tulip.

This might be ‘Blushing Lady’ single late tulip.

with bleeding heart

with bleeding heart

In Long Beach, I continued to admire tulips after we parked at the halfway mark of downtown and I went south while Allan went north to deadhead the planters and the street tree gardens. I also put some Mission Bells California poppy seeds in some empty tree garden spots.

This batch of parrot tulips looked especially good.

parrot buds

parrot buds

I have always disliked that sign on one of the shops that says “This shop is every husband’s nightmare” and find it interesting that the little red gift shop has the sign “My husband’s nightmare” with the word husband x’ed out so it reads “My nightmare.” Very odd indeed.

These will be spectacular if not damaged by wind and rain.

‘Apricot Parrot’ and “Rococo’: These will be spectacular if not damaged by wind and rain.

I stopped into the Home at the Beach shop to get some photos to use to promote the next Peninsula Cash Mob event and thought a reader might enjoy their perfectly beachy displays:

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Then…back out into the chilly wind to deadhead the planters in the next block.

This tulip would be wide open on a sunny day.

This tulip would be wide open on a sunny day.

yellow backed with yellow

yellow backed with yellow

Back at the Fifth Street quadrant of parks, the Darmera peltata bloomed next to the waterfall pond. Later it will have large leaves, but not as large as the gunnera.

Darmera peltata

Darmera peltata

One of the planters already has a good display of reseeded Cerinthe purpurascens, one of my three favourite annuals.

The colour comes from bracts as well as flowers.

The colour comes from bracts as well as flowers.

The Asphodeline that reliably returns each year in the planter right across from the one shown above always amuses me. I think it would be kicky to have more. They are not readily available; I got this one on a wonderful visit to Mesogeo nursery in 2007 and here it still is.

asphodel

asphodel on Fifth Street

A half block further north the ‘Cool Crystal’ and ‘Sensual Touch’ peony/fringed tulips testified to the restaurant behind that planter, The Hungry Harbor, being run by two very nice people. I wanted to give them an extra special planting which is why two of my most spectacular tulips live there.

Hungry Harbour:  The Gavota tulips are from last year.

Hungry Harbour: The Gavota tulips are from last year.

Hungry Harbour:  Tulip 'Cool Crystal'

 Tulip ‘Cool Crystal’

'Cool Crystal' (pink) and 'Sensual Touch' (orange)

‘Cool Crystal’ (pink) and ‘Sensual Touch’ (orange)

The planter straight across the street is the one I think often of redoing. The azaleas look good now but will be blah all summer.

looking over the Hungry Harbour planter

looking over the Hungry Harbour planter

In the planter south of Hungry Harbour in front of the former Sand Dollar Deli (now Sweet McPhees….frozen yogurt perhaps?), I put some more ‘Cool Crystal’ and in this shadier planter it tones well with a purple Heuchera.

Heuchera and 'Cool Crystal'

Heuchera and ‘Cool Crystal’

That particular planter is one of my favourites for good perennial combinations: golden marjoram, the Heuchera, and a dusky cranesbill geranium that I acquired at Joy Creek Nursery.

a good planter

a good planter

Before we drove off, we went into a new shop called The Wooden Horse. It had been recommended to me by the owners of Home at the Beach and is a treasure trove of clever displays.

The Wooden Horse

The Wooden Horse, just south of Frantic Fred’s!

The Wooden Horse

The Wooden Horse

display cases made of pallets

display cases made of pallets

fencing

display shelves with old fencing

wooden horse

The Wooden Horse

wooden horse

The Wooden Horse

The Wooden Horse

At the city works dump spot, while ridding ourselves of plant debris, we briefly sifted the top of the pile to see if we could find the perennial sunflower start we had lost two days ago. No, but we did find a lost hand tool, and I swear it was the one Allan was using. That makes up for my having left another pair of clippers behind at Golden Sands yesterday. (I know I will find them next time we go there.)

We had one more work stop to make for sure. We had brought a hydrangea for Crank’s Roost and although the weather was changing for the worse, I did not want to take it back home again. The dog Maddie greeted us.

Maddie..or Mattie.

Maddie..or Mattie.

A couple of years ago, one of a matched set of hydrangeas on either side of an arbour had mysteriously died. Ominously, so had a small replacement. Today we put in a replacement in hope of regaining balance.

asymmetry

asymmetry

satisfying symmetry

satisfying symmetry (if one grows to match the other)

I need to bring some Dr Earth rhododendron food to help out the old hydrangeas.

a sit spot

a sit spot

And as we left, a serious rain began. We did stop one block away to deadhead the narcissi at The Depot Restaurant.

The Depot

The Depot

I think this tulip is Yellow Mountain

I think this tulip is Yellow Mountain

the pink and green one is Virichic.

The pink and green one is Virichic.

The timing of the rain conveniently coincided with Judy wanting to meet me at 3 PM at Olde Towne. And I had gotten a message from owner Luanne suggesting that because of the rain, she hoped to see me there today.

To be warm, and meet friends, and have a delicious chai latte, and watch the rain blowing sideways outside was such a relief after battling the stiff wind in Long Beach.

Judy, Tom, Jenna

Judy, Tom, Jenna

Not only were the Hornbuckles there but also our dear friend Jenna of Queen La De Da’s so we had an excellent visit. And remember yesterday when I tempted Judy with a photo of a beautiful Japanese maple I’d seen at The Planter Box? This morning she bought not one, but three different maples (making a total in their small garden of 29?) AND she and Tom had already planted the little trees by the time we met for coffee.

Finally, after an hour at home where I got a head start on this blog entry, we went back out with our friend Kelly of Blue Crab Graphics to have dinner at The Depot. We arrived in late daylight, so I was glad I did not have to worry about deadheading tulips before dinner, and we almost closed down the restaurant like My Dinner with Andre.

late evening at The Depot

late evening at The Depot

So tomorrow, will I have a rainy day to relax and read the Tootlepedal blog? I don’t know what to hope for because it would be awfully nice to get the north end resort gardens done….

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