Thursday, 4 June 2015
The day began windy as we checked on the Howerton Street gardens by the port buildings. I planted a few cosmos on the south side of the port office, where the weather was lovely and still.
Port Office and Don Nisbett Gallery with baskets from The Basket Case Greenhouse
Allan’s photo, as he was weeding the Time Enough Books curbside garden: beach strawberry
As soon as I got back around to Howerton, on the north side of the buildings, I was again in the full force of a cold 23 mph wind.
Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ hunkered down below a lavender
All the plants in the Howerton gardens that I’ve put in over the last couple of years are low, to avoid blocking traffic sightlines, and wind and drought resistant. They do need some watering to look their best.
Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ and Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’
The Depot Restaurant
We watered the garden as the wind is most drying, and the sprinkler system does not include the new area, and added a 6 pack of Cosmos ‘Antiquity’.
The garden remains mostly green, so far.
I chopped back a misshapen rhododendron that, now that its five or so flowers are done, was adding nothing good to the picture. The rhodo here used to be huge, and was cut back to allow space for summer colour that would show from a block away.
On the south side of the deck, the tall grasses are growing in a not-impressive speed. I should put up a pole with markers on it, like a water level marking pole, to keep track of progress.
More grasses were planted to enclose the dining deck.
First, we added some Cosmos ‘Rubenza’ to the new garden at Veterans Field.
Allan watered the stage planters.
We set out to water the Long Beach street trees and planters. This would be the first time round for this year’s watering of the tree gardens. It is always difficult at the beginning because a lot of the sunken hose connections will have filled in with dirt.
Under a tree: there actually is a hose connection that is buried.
Allan had to clear out 18 of these, one under each tree, to get his quick connect faucet working.
You might wonder why the hose pipes are not up above the ground. This will make Long Beach sound like a rough and tough place, which it is not…but vandals will kick over and break hose pipes that are above the ground. (That’s what happens to the electrical boxes that sit above ground for plugging in holiday lights.)
Allan’s photo: me hauling hose and bucket past one of the tree gardens. I am sure I was wishing that rugosa rose had been pulled out the first time it appeared in there. And yet, it will be pretty.
As I watered the planters, with a hose end sprayer applying the blue stuff (not organic fertilizer, I am sorry to say, as it proved to be too expensive and too time consuming for these planters), I admired some reseeded California poppies.
burnt orange California poppies, with one white one
In the same planter, my head just about exploded when I saw this:
The photo does not do justice to the sad fact that that is an actual hole in the soil where someone stole a blue agastache, and did not even fill in the spot, leaving ONE formerly matched blue agastache on the other side of the light pole, now throwing my scheme off balance and infuriating me. I immediately called The Basket Case. Fred had one left of that special blue one with dark leaves (Estella Indigo) and will save it for me. Why do I never actually see these plant thieves in action? Do they do their thieving in the early morning or dead of night? Do they have any idea how upsetting it is to have a planting scheme ruined? DO THEY THINK I DON’T NOTICE? Sometimes I ponder deeply, WHY did we quit almost all our private jobs, where plants do NOT get stolen, to focus almost entirely on public gardens?
Allan happened to walk by just as I was calling Basket Case Fred, with the sad hole of missing plant behind me.
In other public gardening news: Just as I began my watering rounds, I saw a nice young couple plop their very large baby carriage right onto one of the tree gardens and enter a restaurant. I followed them in and nicely (really!) said, “Could you please not park your carriage in the tree garden?” The nice young man came right out and moved it, to the place right next to the bench where there was plenty of room, and I wondered…why? About halfway through the round of watering, I saw a young man tie up his handsome boxer dog right in a tree garden, one that we had recently cleared of some too vigorous plants, so it possibly just looked bare to him. It actually has plants trying to fill in, and some seeds. The dog was pacing and pulling, looking for his guy.
a very handsome fellow
I followed the young man into a restaurant and said “Excuse me, could you please not tie your dog in the tree garden?” “He’ll be all right!” said the young man. “I’m sure he will, and he is a beautiful dog, but he can’t stay in the garden.” The fellow came out and untied the dog; I showed him an alternative spot to tie the “very handsome” dog, on the side of the building, but instead they just walked on.
Allan’s photo of an adorable little dog who was NOT in a tree garden.
Meanwhile, the wind whipped along with all its cold northern bluster so we felt like we were shoving back against a big bully all day.
Veterans Field, where the flag poles clanked in the wind and I weeded the little garden.
I was thrilled to see that Salvia patens, a tender perennial, has returned in the flag plaza garden.
31 July 2012, Salvia patens in front of Funland
One last freaky narcissus bloomed in the planter by the carousel.
gunnera by the pond in Fifth Street Park
Fifth Street Park with memorial bench
After all that, I realized toward the end that the colour in my sprayer of blue stuff had not altered enough. It had BEGUN by bubbling properly inside, and then I had not monitered it well, so the hose end fertilizer sprayer (just a bit more of a struggle than plain watering) will have to be used again next time. Drat.
With Long Beach watered, we went on to an evening visit to:
The Anchorage after hours
Allan’s photo: He still can’t finish pruning the viburnums at the Anchorage.
and then finally to our traditional Thursday evening dinner at…
The Cove Restaurant
I think that because we are switching to watering Ilwaco planters with the water trailer, we will soon be alternating between Wednesday and Thursday nights at the Cove. Wednesdays is Noodle Night and should be fun and satisfactory although Fish Taco Thursday is still our favourite. (Chef Jason makes an awesome noodle bowl.)
The Cove Restaurant entry garden, orange rose, orange California poppies
Owner Sondra is in the know that California poppies don’t just come in orange.
Allan’s photo: most welcome hard apple cider (and checking in on Facebook)
What a relief to get out of the wind! We had been hoping that Melissa and Dave of Sea Star Landscape Maintenance could join us but they were still well stuck into a pruning job and could not get away.
I decided on Lomo Saltado tonight, and Allan chose the vegetable stir fry (with chicken).
In the background of the noodle bowl, you can see Steve and John of the Bayside Garden, dining with Rainier and Darlene, who are also friends with Garden Tour Nancy.
our view of the Peninsula Golf Course
As we left, Parking Lot Cat was hoping to slither in and tour the dining room for some petting.
Allan’s photo: my good friend PLC
Friday, 5 July 2015
We watered the post office garden….so dry from the wind (even though it is sheltered by the building).
Even though we had sworn off bucket watering the Ilwaco planters, we still did not have time for Allan to get out the water trailer, so we gathered bucket water to do two intersections of planters that had not been done for a few days. In this wind, they could not wait. Despite blue skies, the wind was miserably cold at about 25 per hour.
boatyard garden, from inside while filling 8 buckets
looking south from Eagle and First
a First Avenue stray
As we drove north to Long Beach, we saw the fog rolling in so now not only was the wind cold, but also the air itself. We dumped yesterday’s debris at city works and filled up buckets from our pile of Soil Energy to mulch some areas at City Hall where the soil seemed thin and compacted.
Allan’s photo: a killdeer at the city works yard
City Hall, west side, mulched
and north side, mulched
My mission, since expanding a garden bed at home on Monday, has been to find time to get myself a yard of Soil Energy to fill up the new area and plant the ladies in waiting. The plan for today had been to spend three afternoon hours getting another section of the beach approach garden weeded and then get the mulch, perhaps even coming back to finish the beach approach section if need be. We also had to pick up a replacement for the stolen agastache whose absence I discovered in a planter yesterday. I could not bear the wind and cold and suggested to Allan that we give up our day off Monday in hope that the weather would be better for the beachy job then. He agreed, so we were off to the nurseries.
The Basket Case Greenhouse
Our stop at the Basket Case was brief and to the point. The weather there was lovely, blue sky, nary a heavy breeze. I pondered how over the years we have resigned from four bayside gardens in order to focus on public and resort gardens, which are all on the west side in the wind.
in the greenhouse, one of Nancy’s planted pots
Peninsula Landscape Supply…
….is the source of Soil Energy mulch.
and grasses and perennials
As our trailer got its load of Soil Energy, the fog and wind arrived on the bayside as well. We headed home, with the hope of getting the rest of the afternoon off; we would make up three hours of work time on Monday, I figured. However, on the way south, I drove by one of our gardens and a plant in a roadside barrel screamed out to me that it was thirsty. I called the business owner, who was out of town and could not water. By then, we were about 20 blocks south of the plant, so we had to turn around and go back and water six containers. I won’t say where because I don’t want to embarrass anyone. I am promised regular watering from now on….
The reddish dry leaves of this Erysimum had screamed out to me. I am not sure it will revive; it may need to be replaced in order for this planter to look good for the rest of the summer.
This sucked up enough time that we were no longer getting done with work three hours early.
The yard of soil needed to go into the new beds out by the bogsy woods, and a very scary proposition it was with the wind. I found that a large dead alder branch had already come down right where I needed to dump most of my wheelbarrows. The wind’s intensity felt like a winter storm.
As I loaded up one barrowful, I saw another big branch fall in Nora’s back yard. I ended up just dumping and not spreading the mulch, and could not plant any of the ladies in waiting because it was just too dangerous.
I went out at dusk to take a few after photos:
looking south between east and middle bed; the wind was roaring in the alder grove.
the newly expanded shade bed
the big branch that had come down on that bed before I mulched. No campfires in this weather!
Smokey followed me out and back in.
When I returned to the front door, I saw a gift bag on the porch. Inside was this:
The very pitcher that I had pictured in my blog, from the NIVA green shop in Long Beach!
It reminds me of these gold pieces; the teacups and the teapot were my grandma’s.
It took me two days of investigation to track down who had brought it to me; thank you again, Lisa!
I hoped for better weather on the weekend as I so very much wanted to get some ladies in waiting planted. However, the forecast called for wind on Saturday and I’d already canceled a potential campfire with our Kathleen and turned it into a sit down restaurant dinner plan instead. I was anticipating a visit from two garden bloggers from Portland in the afternoon and had just learned of a potential garden tour on Sunday. The poor ladies in waiting might have to wait some more.
wind graph about a mile southwest of us. (I don’t know what the blue line is.)
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