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Posts Tagged ‘Howerton gardens’

Thursday, 25 May 2017

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

This involved some planting as well as weeding.

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post office garden

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

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

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

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

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looking west

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

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

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a good butt scritching

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

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

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

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

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north of the port office

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

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

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at Time Enough Books, looking west

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Bookseller Karla says the ceanothus is causing a sensation.

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

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

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perfect book

Leslie was pruning at a retreat when Joan Baez emerged.

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

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

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figuring out where to plant

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weeding the bookstore landscape (Allan’s photos)

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

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

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

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

trimming

Allan’s string trimming

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

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path caked with cherry blossoms (Allan’s photo)

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Mike’s raked path

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

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Looking west from Elizabeth

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just across the parking lot (Allan’s photo)

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

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

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by Ilwaco Freedom Market

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

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

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

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

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making brisket, smelled delicious

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Allan’s photo

Next, the boatyard.

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

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

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

Allan’s photos in town:

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

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

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

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7 PM….I had come this far…

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

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

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The garden had a haze of horsetail again.

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so much to do

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

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

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

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Allan’s photo

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

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

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geese seen while dumping weeds (Allan’s photos)

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

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

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Saturday, 13 June 2015

On Friday I had made a resolution to get all the ladies in waiting in the ground, and to not even go to the Saturday market.  Two things got me to the market after all:  I had hoped there would be the heirloom tomato plant booth would be at the Friday market in Long Beach (it wasn’t) and I wanted to find a birthday present for Seattle Carol.  I also am driven by the self imposed commitment to take photos for Discover Ilwaco.

I liked Smokey's plan for the day.

I liked Smokey’s plan for the day.

path to the market through Nora's back yard

path to the market through Nora’s back yard

Here’s a worrisome thing: the water in the meander line ditch behind our property is all dried up, so soon.

the meander line today

the meander line today

From August last year

From August last year (half a block further west, which is also dried up early this year)

looking west, no sign of water

looking west, no sign of water

Along Howerton Drive, just across the big parking lot, I assessed the two curbside gardens I walked by, thinking it’s a good thing I picked drought tolerant plants.

Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue'

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’

lavender and California poppies

lavender and California poppies

more Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue'

more Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ and lavender

The garden boat at Time Enough Books needs more water than the curbside gardens do.

The garden boat at Time Enough Books needs more water than the curbside gardens do.

The hanging baskets needs water every day.  I'm glad that's not my responsibility.  (South side of Port Office)

The hanging baskets needs water every day. I’m glad that’s not my responsibility. (South side of Port Office)

I did not find the perfect present to send to Carol; I think I’ll go to NIVA green for that; but I did find some Sweet 100 tomato plants.

Saturday market plant vendor

Saturday market plant vendor

I just love the name of the new-this-year booth, Blue Collar Eats.  I need to go to the market hungry sometime instead of right after breakfast (which, for me on a day off, is midmorning).

Blue Collar Eats

Blue Collar Eats

glass

I browsed Time Enough Books and got Carol a card, and saw a book I want to read:

Cabin Lessons is the one that caught my eye.

Cabin Lessons is the one that caught my eye.

A book won’t do for Carol: she is an avid reader but is also a minimalist and does not collect stuff of any kind.

Meanwhile, Allan had dealt with yesterday’s work debris, and later mowed and strimmed the lawn.

dismantling for firewood the old barrels from Fish Alley

dismantling for firewood the old barrels from Fish Alley

When I got back home from the market, I was exhausted.  I hoped that a special drink would perk me up.

Tonic water with Starvation Alley organic cranberry juice and a splash of lemon juice

Tonic water with Starvation Alley organic cranberry juice and a splash of lemon juice

It must have done the trick, as I proceeded to plant almost all of the ladies in waiting.  The only ones that were left over were some 6 packs of painted sage.  A vigorous wind made it a little nerve wracking to plant near the alder trees.  However, I could not bear to wait any longer, and the wind was not as bad as it had been the previous Saturday.

plants in the ground!

plants in the ground! in a new raised area under the former danger tree (now a stump)

I added about ten new-to-me hardy fuchsias.

Fuchsia 'Empress of Prussia'

Fuchsia ‘Empress of Prussia’

Fuchsia 'Black Prince'

Fuchsia ‘Black Prince’

As I planted, I caught up on some plants that I hadn’t visited for awhile.

I had almost missed the flowering of this plant from Todd.

I had almost missed the flowering of this plant from Todd. (Sauromatum venosum)

I had missed its peak of bloom.

I had missed its peak of bloom.

That reminded me to have a look at the Japanese iris that had been so beautifully in bud over a week ago.

Iris ensata

Iris ensata

closer

closer

Another iris has pale green strappy foliage.

Another iris has pale green strappy foliage.

and dark flowers.  I can't remember where I got this one!

and dark flowers. I can’t remember where I got this one!

I was thrilled to see my Rosa rubrifolia popping up from among the Geranium ‘Rozanne’.  I had thought it was a goner.

Rosa rubrifolia AKA Rosa glauca

Rosa rubrifolia AKA Rosa glauca with purple red foliage

I also saw a spooky sight that made me think of Day of the Triffids:

These lights had appeared on the boat half a block away.

These lights had appeared on the boat half a block away.

Maybe I’m remembering the tripod science fiction series by John Christopher, which I read in my teenage years, because I do know that the triffids were giant plants, not mechanical.  The lights were particularly startling when the sun shone off of them, unlike these quieter late evening photos.

telephoto

telephoto

wheelbarrows full of empty pots

wheelbarrows full of empty pots

Not to mention empty pots strewn about...

Not to mention empty pots strewn about…

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The ladies in waiting section, almost empty of needing planting.

The ladies in waiting section, almost empty of needing planting.

Planting is just about my least favourite garden task, so I was proud of myself for buckling down and getting it done.  (One year I actually paid Allan to plant for me on a day when I could not stand it anymore.)  Tomorrow, I hoped to be done with all the planting at home (for now).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Ilwaco

The grey, chilly, dark, and sometimes misty weather continued.  I welcomed it as it saved us worrying about watering all the plants we have recently planted.  The pressure of Annuals Planting Time is slowing down, so that even though we still have planting to do, it is not all planting all the time.

First thing today:  We usually do a little something to our volunteer garden at the post office during our daily mail stop.

Ilwaco Post Office garden

Ilwaco Post Office garden

post office detail: Eryngium 'Jade Frost' and Allium albopilosum

post office detail: Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’ and Allium albopilosum

I wanted to check on the rest of the Howerton Avenue gardens, the ones we had not gotten to yesterday, as the port will be a busy place during Memorial Day weekend.

the bed by the Ilwaco pavilion

the bed by the Ilwaco pavilion

pink California poppies

pink California poppies

green santolina in the next bed to the east

green santolina in the next bed to the east

the tiny and vulnerable "drive-over garden"

the tiny and vulnerable “drive-over garden”

The Marie Powell gallery garden bed

The Marie Powell gallery garden bed, looking west

The new ArtPort Gallery is located in the space that once housed the beloved and much-missed Pelicano Restaurant.

Powell Gallery bed, looking east

Powell Gallery bed, looking east

Eryngium and Lavender

Eryngium and Lavender further to the west

With the port gardens having achieved something near to perfection, we drove north to our next job.

The Anchorage Cottages

My good friend Mitzu greeted us.

My good friend Mitzu greeted us.

Anchorage manager Beth told us that Mitzu probably expected a doggie treat like the UPS man brings.

I think she's right.

I think she’s right.

We had some milk bones that I carried for the Casa Pacifica dogs; they were too big or not tasty enough, as Mitzu was not interested in having a small corner off of one.  So I gave her a tiny bit of cheese from our lunch box.  We must add some small dog treats to the items we carry with us.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

the north garden by the office

the north garden by the office with Geranium ‘AT Johnson’ beautifully run rampant

This is one job where I don’t mind this particular hardy geranium filling in a large area….at least for now, till it starts to look tatty.

I am usually obsessed with pulling this one.

I am usually obsessed with pulling this one.

Ceanothus and one of those Canadian Explorer extra hardy roses (I think)

Ceanothus, barberry, and one of those Canadian Explorer extra hardy roses (I think)

I added some more plants to the various containers while Allan did some weeding.

On the way to our next job, we stopped at both the Basket Case and The Planter Box to get some assorted Eryngiums for an end-of-day project.

The Basket Case

Allan did a photo essay at The Basket Case about why we trim sword ferns in the early spring:

Hidden behind the greenhouses, here is an untrimmed sword fern.

Hidden behind the greenhouses, here is a completely untrimmed sword fern.

Here is one that was trimmed last year (by Allan, during a time when he was waiting for me to shop) but not this year.

Here is one that was trimmed last year (by Allan, during a time when he was waiting for me to shop) but not this year.

Here is one that Fred just trimmed in the display garden.  (You can trim them carefully at end time; it is easier in early spring before the new fronds have unfurled.)

Here is one that Fred just trimmed in the display garden. (You can trim them carefully at end time; it is easier in early spring before the new fronds have unfurled.)

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Allan's photo in the south greenhouse

Allan’s photo in the south greenhouse

Regarding petunias, one situation where they are FABULOUS is in Nancy’s baskets.  (The one above mainly features calibrachoa (million bells); I see petunias in a couple of the background baskets in that photo.)

Allan's photo: me and Fred

Allan’s photo: me and Fred.  I have a Miscanthus ‘Gold Bar’.

Fred pointed out to be that he had two shrubs I had requested; I had not even realized that.  I grabbed me one of each: Dichroa febrifuga and Itea ilicifolia.  There was one left of each, so get ’em if you can; if they are still there at the beginning of June, I am taking them both!

Right: Dichroa in my garden two years ago.  Stunning.

Right: Dichroa in my garden two years ago. Stunning.

The Planter Box

From the Basket Case to the Planter Box, across Cranberry Road

From the Basket Case to the Planter Box, across Cranberry Road

We swung over to the main highway to get a couple more Eryngiums that I new the Planter Box had in stock.

at  The Planter Box, Allan's photo

at The Planter Box, Allan’s photo

me and owner Teresa, Allan's photo

me and owner Teresa, Allan’s photo

checking the progress of the painted sage second sowing (Allan's photo)

checking the progress of the painted sage second sowing (Allan’s photo)

Andersen’s RV Park

Next, we had alloted a couple of hours to weeding, as far as possible in that time, all the beds at Andersen’s RV Park.

a grey day at Andersen's

a grey day at Andersen’s

In the women's restroom:  my former partner, Robert, painted this "Desert Rose" mirror.

In the women’s restroom: my former partner, Robert, painted this “Desert Rose” mirror.

I surely do wish I could have that mirror if the RV park sells….

I had weeded the garden shed and the picket fence gardens and helped Allan on the west garden with the rest of our time.  I had suggested he use the string trimmer on the path; being light sand, I thought that might work way faster than hand weeding.  It was not fast, but it did the job.

before, Allan's photo

before, Allan’s photo

after, Allan's photo

after, Allan’s photo

before:  Allan's photo

before: Allan’s photo

after, Allan's photo

after, Allan’s photo

The poppies are just barely beginning to bloom here.

The poppies are just barely beginning to bloom here.

Still did not get this edge weeded by the office back door.

Still did not get this edge weeded by the office back door.

in that same area:  Oriental poppies and Halmiocistus wintonensis

in that same area: Oriental poppies and Halmiocistus wintonensis

While weeding, I admired the fine specimen to Stipa gigantea from several angles.

Stipa backed with Payson Hall club house.

Stipa backed with Payson Hall club house.

with Miscanthus variegatus, another of my favourites

with Miscanthus variegatus, another of my favourites

looking through to office back door

looking through to office back door

house2

looking south from Payson Hall

looking south from Payson Hall

Ilwaco again

My shopping for Eryngiums culminated in adding five cool plants to the garden in front of the soon-to-be-open Salt Hotel on Howerton.  It’s a tough area to plant because thick landscape fabric must be cut for each plant.  Allan did it while I pruned the ceanothus back from the sidewalk at the Time Enough Books garden to the east.

Allan ready to plant

Allan ready to plant

Eryngium 'Big Blue' from The Planter Box

Eryngium ‘Big Blue’ from The Planter Box set up to plant

The old Harbor Lights will become Salt, as soon as the sign arrives.

The old Harbor Lights Motel will become Salt Hotel, as soon as the sign arrives.

The new owners, Julez and Laila, have added some plants of their own.

The new owners, Julez and Laila, have added some plants of their own by the building.

Allan's photo: Each plant must have a hole cut through fabric to plant.  Oh, we do hate fabric in a planting bed.

Allan’s photo: Each plant must have a hole cut through fabric to plant. Oh, we do hate fabric in a planting bed.

Allan's photo: step two

Allan’s photo: step two

This time, he added some potting soil to the hole, I don’t usually believe in coddling a plant with special soil in the ground, for fear its roots will just circle in the good stuff.  Here, though, we decided to try it as the soil is so bad and rubbly.

Allan's photo: rocks replaced and washed with water.

Allan’s photo: rocks replaced and washed with water.  Eryngium ‘Big Blue’ from The Planter Box

He figured out that each plant took 12 minutes to plant here.

Eryngium 'Jade Frost' from The Basket Case.

Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’ from The Basket Case.

Miscanthus 'Gold Bar' from The Basket Case

Miscanthus ‘Gold Bar’ from The Basket Case

Gold Bar Miscanthus will stay nice and short.  Yesterday, I had been going to plant some of my stash of Panicum ‘Northwind’ in here…till I learned from Todd that it gets 4-6 feet tall.  We try to stay low with plants along Howerton, to avoid blocking traffic sightlines.

planted these and Eryngium 'Blue Hobbit'

planted these and Eryngium ‘Blue Hobbit’

on the water side of the hotel

on the water side of the hotel

Once again, we worked till eight. typical for the big push of getting ready for the holiday weekend.

 

 

 

 

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Sunday, 23 February 2014

We expected rain, so slept and slept…and slept through a pretty nice mid morning. These two probably kept sleeping all day:

Mary and Smokey

Mary and Smokey

With decent, if a bit chilly, weather, we decided we had to go to work at the Port, but first we saw Olde Towne Luanne and her friend Shelly who stopped by on their way to go shopping. I went out to greet them and saw them taking camera phone photos over the fence…of what, I wondered…the crocuses? Their cameras were aimed too high for that. It turned out to be some other garden visitors, so I snuck around the back of the garage to surprise them.

Can you see them?

Can you see them? There are three…

The mother was already slipping over to Nora’s lawn. The two young ones were bolder.

deer

one scoots, one keeps eating

one scoots, one keeps eating

no telephoto here!

no telephoto here!

Over on the next door lawn...

Over on the next door lawn…

Two of the three amble away.

Two of the three amble away.

And thus we have the tall deer fence around most of our garden!

Then we were off to work, starting at the boatyard garden where the crocuses are looking lovely and got praise from several passersby.

in the boatyard garden

in the boatyard garden

Our main mission was to trim the santolinas. I cut them back hard so they do not splay open.

Santolina (lavender cotton) half done.

Santolina (lavender cotton) half done.

Cut down to that new growth in the center.

Cut to that new growth way down in the center.

You can take hard little cuttings, like the one below, and stick them in the ground and most of the time you will get a new plant. Santolinas come with silver (grey), green, or gold foliage. The gold one (‘Lemon Fizz’) always wants to revert to green.

green santolina

green santolina cutting

I also cut back the Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’ plants.

Artemisia 'Powis Castle'

Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’

One that I cut back earlier this month is already showing new growth at the base (along with one of the many shotweeds we pulled out).

This will make a prettier plant than if left unpruned.

This will make a prettier plant than if left unpruned.

As always, there were boats to admire, including this one from Newport, Oregon (home of my most favourite retreat, the Sylvia Beach Hotel).

Pacific Roamer

Pacific Roamer

From a busy area of the boatyard, a beagle type dog came out barking and wagging and I learned her name was Brandy.

boats

For the rest of our work session, I thought about what a fine girl she is. Her person told me Brandy has been a boat dog for only the last three of her 14 years and she does not like it much, as the seas can be rough. I assume his life, his love and his lady is the sea and the faithful dog puts up with it to be with her guy.

santolina and lavender prunings

santolina and lavender prunings

Allan used hedge shears to tidy up the lavenders, as they do not like to be cut back hard like santolinas and artemisias but must just be gently shaped.

Two of the Gauras looked so bad that I just pulled them out. They might have come back, but I was tired of looking at them and would rather just get new ones.

Gaura: a lost cause?

Gaura: a lost cause?

I can already see the horsetail starting to poke its unpleasant nose through the soil.

the plague of horrible horsetail begins...so soon.

the plague of horrible horsetail begins…so soon.

Drizzle had begun as we finished the boatyard project. We decided to just cut back two big messy gauras in the garden at the east end of Howerton.

at Howerton and Elizabeth, looking west, before

at Howerton and Elizabeth, looking west, before

looking east toward Beacon RV Park

looking east toward Beacon RV Park

iris reticulata in the garden

iris reticulata in the garden

The weather suddenly cleared so we did much more cutting back than we thought we would. Trying to weed to little blanketing weeds did not work out because the garden was so wet that we were losing too much soil with each weed patch, so we just went after the bigger weeds and some of the Bad Aster.

after

after

The rain and wind returned vigorously, further inspiring our decision to finish the weeding later.

the big field where we dump debris....

the big field where we dump debris….

time to go home!

time to go home!

I think we will toddle down to Pelicano Restaurant for an early dinner during their “happy hour” and publish this later with, of course, the addition of a few dinner photos.

Later: Finishing off with some phone blogging from my comfy chair, complicated by this:

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The view from our table at Pelicano:

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Cocktails: Ginger Snap and Aloha Kentucky (Maker’s Mark, pineapple juice, lemon juice, honey simple syrup).

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Lentil and Sausage Soup with Spanish Smoked Paprika and Feta
And
Shrimp and White Bean Salad with Avocado and Jalapeño-Cilantro Dressing

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The salad was so good, I could have eaten a casserole dish of it. Allan had the deservedly renowned Caesar Salad.

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Reflections and boat lights glowed as night fell.

Allan’s beautifully presented Petrale Sole with Potatoes, Tuscan Kale, Shiitake Mushrooms and Lemon Butter:

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As the tide rose, the tall lights of fishing boats moved into the harbour, echoed by candlelight reflections.

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What pleasure to have such a place two blocks from home.

As we left, Denny, Mary, Mary-mom (Mary’s mom, also Mary) and friends from Klipsan Beach Cottages were just embarking on their own delicious Pelicano feast.

Looking in the window at the KBC party:

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The wind and rain as we left made us glad we hadn’t walked down. Tomorrow’s chance of rain is 100% so just perhaps I’ll get a day of reading.

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5 July:  I think Friday was the longest day…We had to get up early (for us) to get to the beach clean up, and yet we were half an hour late as we always are, rolling in to the sign in point at ten instead of nine thirty.

Beach Clean Up  10-11:30 AM

The Grass Roots Garbage Gang has three beach cleanups a year.  The biggest one, because of massive fireworks on the beach, is on July 5th every year.

signing people in at Seaview approach

signing people in at Seaview approach

 clean

dumpster

Seaview approach road

Seaview approach road

clean

beach clean

beach clean

clean

clean

 dangerous campfire remnants

dangerous campfire remnants

Allan and another volunteer compare their finds

Allan and another volunteer compare their finds

a bag already filled

a bag already filled

clean

supervisor

supervisor

Birds benefit from having a clean beach.

Birds benefit from having a clean beach.

amazing plants grow in the sand...

amazing plants grow in the sand…

P1020616

clean

clean

clean

dumpster

As well as picking up on foot, volunteers drive the beach to pick up the bags as they are filled.

clean

We usually stay at the clean up longer and then go to the soup feed, but on this day we had too much work to do so had to go to….

Long Beach: 11:40 til 4:00

The Long Beach planters could have waited for one more day to be watered, but doing so on Saturday would have been madness.  Allan turned on the water in the Sid Snyder Drive beach approach planters (which have soaker hose) while I started watering the planters downtown.  I was hoping the street tree gardens would not also need watering, but poking at the soil revealed that they were dry, so Allan started on that when he got to town.

I can certainly see the difference in the Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ that I forgot to cut back, and that has now fallen open, and the nice tidy ones that I cut back in mid May.

not cut back...and cut back

not cut back…and cut back

It is just coincidence when a burnt orange California poppy blooms with a yellow flower and a pink one with a pink flower….

happy coincidences

happy coincidences

I don’t think I have ever seen the town so full of people.

crowds everywhere

crowds everywhere

This meant we got our extra share of compliments…and also saw some extra planter sitting;  it does pain me to see someone sitting right on a plant.

o the pain!

o the pain!

The Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ bloomed just in time to look like fireworks for the big holiday weekend.  I have removed it from most of the planters, but the owner of Wind World Kites loves it in the planter in front of his shop and doesn’t mind being somewhat hidden behind it.

Wind World Kites

Wind World Kites

Cute Alert!  I was photographing a cute Yorkie for the blog (the one on the bottom step is Gilly, 4 1/2 pounds, age ten) and another puppy wanted to get in the picture.

for Judy

for Judy

The painted sage down by Home at the Beach was looking grand, as was, as always, their storefront display.

Home at the Beach

Home at the Beach

Salvia viridis (painted sage)

Salvia viridis (painted sage)

Bees were buzzing all over the planters…

Salvia 'May Night' and golden oregano

Salvia ‘May Night’ and golden oregano (no visible bees but they were there!)

Geranium 'Rozanne'

Geranium ‘Rozanne’

sedums

sedums

We have further lost the bench on the northernmost west side planter, but with bees all over the lavender and Helichrysum I am not about to cut it back yet.

Uh oh.

Uh oh.

A sad moment:  I found a big finger blight on the northernmost east side planter.  Someone had stolen the new Dianthus ‘Raspberry Ripple’ in its full beauty.  I happened to have with me three red Dianthus for Veterans Field which we had not planted because we could not find parking anywhere near there, so one of them went in as a replacement but it is not nearly as special.

finger blight! and repair

finger blight! and repair

We finished out Long Beach by turning off the soaker hoses on Sid Snyder.  All the planters used to have soaker hoses but they never got the soil uniformly wet, some plants struggled, and I prefer the quick connect hose watering method we use now on the main street.  It also enables us to wash salt wind and car dust off of the plants.

We parked at the Kite Museum where I deadheaded their garden and felt very disappointed in how it is looking.  I have not had time to check on it and it has not filled in well at all.  This is a difficult time of year to add plants, but we must…I know the staff will keep it watered.  I blame the wind…or the lack of the gardener’s shadow (said to be the best fertilizer…that is to say, we have not looked at it enough).

not satisfactory

not satisfactory

Then we were off to Ilwaco.

Ilwaco 4:00-8:30

Our first garden on Howerton was by Queen La De Da’s Art Castle.  Jenna has been keeping it watered for us.  I think the wind is the culprit for the state of some of the poppies, rather than finger blight.

unseasonable wind

unseasonable wind

We checked on and weeded all the Howerton gardens that we care for and the Port Office garden.  (You can tell which ones we do because almost all “ours” have Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’!)

at Howerton and Elizabeth

at Howerton and Elizabeth

After Howerton, I finally finished weeding the boatyard.  At last!  After pecking away on it all week, it did get done in time for Ilwaco’s big fireworks Saturday.  Allan had to bucket water the Ilwaco planters and then rejoined me and watered the boatyard garden.

looking good in the evening

looking good in the evening

santolina

santolina

Santolina is another way to recognize our gardens.

Santolina is another way to recognize our gardens.

pinky purple

pinky purple

looking south..the end in sight

looking south..the end in sight

Penstemon 'Burgundy Brew'

Penstemon ‘Burgundy Brew’

many weeds and spent California poppies

many weeds and spent California poppies

I clipped some of the California poppies that had flopped onto the sidewalk; they will flower again from the base.

orange and blue

orange and blue

Allan watering

Allan watering

And…the lovely view from the very end of the boatyard garden, looking south at dusk.

twilight

twilight

We just had time before dark to make a last stop at the Shoalwater Cove Gallery garden and deadhead the lupines.  We can see our house from there.   With just enough light left to water some pots and the containers in the greenhouse, we got home.  I think that July 5th now qualifies as this year’s longest work day…and the reward?  Two days off!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Our day started promisingly with a quick walk through our back garden to pick a bouquet for Queen La De Da’s Art Night event. I took a little time to admire some of the flowers.

I'm pleased to report that my California poppies reseeded in a nice mix of colours instead of reverting to plain orange.

I’m pleased to report that my California poppies reseeded in a nice mix of colours instead of reverting to plain orange.

California poppies

This tiny jewel of a Pacific tree frog on a rose made my morning happy.

tiny perfection

tiny perfection

(As I write this, I can hear the evening chorus of frogs that tells me many more are out there.)

"Maxine's rose" rambling

“Maxine’s rose” rambling

I even have a very few Eremurus (foxtail lilies) that, while not a patch on my friend Sheila’s, are the best I’ve ever managed to grow. (A thought: They would look excellent in the front garden where I like tall plants, so I must plant some there this fall.)

Eremurus

Eremurus

And Mary was looking cute and silly. (She came to us with that name.)

my Mary

my Mary

Next we checked the Ilwaco boatyard garden and saw some beautiful flowers and interesting boats.

a pleasant name

a pleasant name

Condor II

Condor II

Janice Ann

Janice Ann from Newport

boatyard garden

boatyard garden, looking north

toadflax

toadflax

looking south

looking south

reseeded California poppies

reseeded California poppies

a cheerful mix for a cheerful morning

a cheerful mix for a cheerful morning

We then weeded and removed dead bulb foliage from the garden by Queen La De Da’s Art Castle and Don Nisbett Art Gallery and the Port office to make sure they looked good for the art night scheduled for that evening.

looking west on Howerton

looking west on Howerton

Knautia 'Thunder and Lightning' at the Port office

Knautia ‘Thunder and Lightning’ at the Port office

Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue', of course.

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’, of course.

I pondered why two out of three of the Eryngiums from last year bloomed beautifully while one just sat there.

a non flowering year

a non flowering year

That was the only annoying bit of a pleasant morning, but the day would soon turn difficult.

At 12:30, we went up to Discovery Heights with the intention of spending seven hours on the gardens there, and so we did. But what a horrible mess they were. We simply have too many clients and this job, being one we do not drive by on our regular route, tends to get neglected during planting season. It consists of two very large and three medium sized planting areas, all of which require getting up onto a rock wall either high or low.

middle garden

middle garden

west end of middle garden

west end of middle garden

We both weeded along the front of the middle garden for awhile and then Allan went down to the lower garden while I tried to at least finish the front of the middle one. I took a before photo but did not have the heart to take an after.

before

before

The gardens are basically gorgeous, if I do say so, having planted them in late 2004 and then with Allan when he first moved here in 2005. The selections are deer resistant and have grown well together. The weeds in middle garden have always been a problem because bad soil was brought in (not my choice) containing much horsetail and rush. We were laid off for eight months or so in 2009 and during that year the weeds moved in fiercely. By the time we took the job back, the large time slot it had had was lost to other jobs, and we have never really managed to find time get the garden the way we like it to be. But that is not the main issue. I just am finding the job terribly hard as I get older, and I finally had a revelation that was right up there with the Great Revelation of 2007: to only do jobs that bring joy. I may only have another twenty years of active gardening IF I am as lucky in health as my mother. (She was able to retire at age 55, and that may have contributed to her being able to work in her garden till age 82.)

But it is hard to give up a garden that one has planted. I walked down to join Allan at the lower garden and sat for a moment in the car to eat a snack, gazing up into the garden where the sight of still more thick weeds met my eyes.

grass obscuring the garden

grass obscuring the garden

Did I weep? If I did, it would be unusual. Did we go up into this garden and weed for an hour? We most certainly did. Did I make a final decision? Yes. Before we even got back into the zone of cell phone coverage, I was composing a email of gradual resignation on my phone. I’ve tried to back off from this job before but have always been talked out of it by the owners. They deserve better, someone who has the time to weed thoroughly. I explained that the cities of Long Beach and Ilwaco and the Port of Ilwaco gardens have gotten more expansive every year and that those public gardens are my priority, but I think that one particular point that I made finally got the owners to agree to ask another local gardening business to begin to take over the weeding. I wrote that “the city jobs, to be quite frank, are MUCH more comfortable to do being on level ground and with, well, bathrooms! Climbing down off the rock wall and trekking off into the woods is no fun for a middle aged lady, let me tell you!” Ha! I should have used that VERY accurate reason for resigning before. Later when I told my friend Judy that I need jobs with three amenities: some shade, a chair or bench to sit on at lunchtime, and a bathroom, she said “No chair, no shade, no bathrooms, no Skyler!”

When we got home, I had to recover from all the emotion before going out again, so we did not get to Art Night till the last hour and missed the crowd of over sixty people who had attended. I was thrilled that the event had done so well and regret that I only got photos after the biggest crowd had gone.

Marie Powell's gallery

Marie Powell’s gallery

floral monotype in Marie's gallery

floral monotype in Marie’s gallery

Don Nisbett's gallery

Don Nisbett’s gallery

 

a Basket Case basket from inside Don's gallery

a Basket Case basket from inside Don’s gallery

outside Queen La De Da's

outside Queen La De Da’s Art Castle

evening music

art night guests outside the Port office

art night guests outside the Port office

From inside Queen La De Da’s, this piece of art spoke to me about the big decision of the day:

follow your heart

My heart says to only do jobs that bring us joy and to NOT do so many jobs that we have no time to spend in our own garden during spring through autumn. My perfectionism says that fewer jobs done well are better for our own satisfaction and that of the clients. My social conscience tells me that the most important jobs to me are the ones that benefit the most people: resorts, city gardens, art gallery gardens. The very most important jobs are the ones whose gardens benefit passersby of all classes and economic status, i.e. the city gardens. The very good sleep that I got that night told me that I had made the right decision.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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We woke to pouring rain and I got the idea that it would be a great day to go to Costco and get some plants to complete a few areas…at Back Alley gardens in Gearhart.  But then the sun came out and we went to work after all.

We finished weeding the garden at the east end of Howerton:

at Howerton and Elizabeth

at Howerton and Elizabeth

And did a weeding job at the Red Barn Arena.

before and after at Red Barn

before and after at Red Barn

 a horsey view

a horsey view

By then I was still feeling the urge to go to Gearhart, partly because of a tiresome wind and partly just because I knew I would probably find some special plants there.  And we needed canned cat food in quantity; as Allan said, that was important to five members of the household (Frosty, Smokey, Mary, Maddy, and Calvin).  First, we would have to make sure Long Beach was reasonably ready for the weekend so we went to the Fifth Street Park and Allan weeded it while I walked and checked four and a half blocks of the tree and planter gardens.

Fifth Street park, NW corner

Fifth Street park, NW corner

planter detail

planter detail with Veronica (blue)

planter detail with Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve'

planter detail with Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’

Cosmos and Bee

Cosmos and Bee

Bees buzzed about in many of the planters.

across from Home at the Beach

across from Home at the Beach

It was rather stressful getting far enough along by 3 PM to have time to get to Back Alley Gardens (across the river and down the coast a bit) before they close at five.  We both hustled.  I did not do the four northernmost planters but did get to all the others and got the Veterans Field garden weeded and deadheaded as well.  We had a brief turnaround time at home to make room in the car and drop off the trailer and then we were on the road.

I had called ahead to Back Alley and learned that they mostly had annuals at this time, with one new shipment of perennials having arrived today and more expected tomorrow.  Tomorrow and Saturday would not do for our shopping trip because of work.  By Sunday the weather was predicted to be good and I knew I would want to be in my own garden IF we could get the day off.  So it had to be today, and I was sure I would find something worthwhile.

Back Alley Gardens and The Natural Nook

Back Alley Gardens and The Natural Nook

Sure enough, right inside the display area entrance, I found two plants I wanted, a Salvia and an Agastache.

some of the plant tables

some of the plant tables

on the Back Alley deck

on the Back Alley deck

Agastache and Salvia

Agastache and Salvia

At Back Alley

At Back Alley

I hope we can find time to go back in a couple of weeks when the nursery has acquired, as they plan to, more cool perennials.

I did find a little over a square flat of interesting plants, including Hebe ‘Quicksilver’, and had a good gardening business talk with one of the owners.

Hebe 'Quicksilver'

Hebe ‘Quicksilver’

The Natural Nook side of the business has home decor and a florist shop.

The Natural Nook florist car

The Natural Nook florist car

and a welcome sign for dogs

and a welcome sign for dogs

Allan wanted a fern for his garden and, failing to find one at Back Alley that he did not already have, proposed we go south past Seaside to 7 Dees.  I thought it might be an excursion doomed to failure as they might close at five.  Their website assured me they stayed open till six (at least the Portland store does!), so we went south.  And indeed when we got there, it turned out they are now open till seven PM.

7 Dees garden center

7 Dees garden center

The plant selection was much better than it had been on my visits there last year. I still miss the olden days when it was Raintree Nursery and had, I feel, more unusual plants and a more personal feel.  It is where I first discovered my favourite perennial, Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’, which I bought because it had a sign saying it was the favourite of one of the staffers…back in the Raintree days.

The access through the nursery is better now, with level paths and only a few stairs, and they have changed it around somewhat over the winter and added some appealing decor.

at 7 Dees

at 7 Dees, Allan looks at ferns

gazebo and baskets

gazebo and baskets

planted chair

planted chair

chair

rustic door with view of lower level

rustic door with view of lower level

shop cat

shop cat

dinnertime

dinnertime

plummy pots

plummy pots

Gunnera leaf cascade fountain

Gunnera leaf cascade fountain; I like this!

I bought a blue and gold Tradescantia for myself, having fallen in love with it years ago in Lucy Hardiman’s garden, even though every time I have tried one the slugs have gotten it.

gold Tradescantia...maybe this time...

gold Tradescantia…maybe this time…

I can’t resist brown leaves.

had to have it

had to have it

I think I already have this so resisted.

I think I already have this so resisted.

tried and failed to talk Allan into this for his shade garden

tried and failed to talk Allan into this for his shade garden

It was only on the drive home that I found out Allan had resisted the above Saxifrage…or I probably would have bought it.

pulsatilla seedheads

pulsatilla seedheads

We headed home via two tedious grocery shopping stops at Costco and Fred Meyer.  I will not admit the chain that we stopped at to get two reasonably priced Heucheras.  (Hint:  The plants there were DRY.  Caveat:  It was not a Walmart, whose door I will NEVER darken.  Excuse: Even my most liberal friends Tom and Judy shop for plants there despite the conservative reputation of the chain.  Reason:  Heuchs were much much less expensive than at 7 Dees and I spend sooo much on plants…)

At home, we now are back in the world of unplanted plants.  They all got a deep burbling in one of the rain barrels, and the chain store plants (ok, Home Depot) were especially thirsty.

in the car to go with us to a friend's garden tomorrow

in the car to go with us tomorrow

on a shelf waiting to be squeezed in here

on a shelf waiting to be squeezed in here

to fill in Gene and Peggy's garden

to fill in Gene and Peggy’s garden

and those artichokes for Leanne...they were being eaten by a slug!

Allan’s fern and those artichokes for Leanne…they were being eaten by a slug!

I hope by Monday evening to be back to an everything-planted state, except for the artichokes.

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