Today we went to one of the thrice yearly volunteer beach clean up events organized by the Grassroots Garbage Gang. We decided that instead of going to our usual spot on the Seaview approach or our second usual choice, Benson Beach, we would start at Beard’s Hollow. It’s the very south end of the beach that runs for (I think) 18 miles north and is a bit of a walk from the parking lot so is not as frequently cleaned. It used to be my beach walking destination when I lived in Seaview in 1993.
near the parking lot
The trail used to be underwater until well into spring, causing me a lot of frustration after I moved to Ilwaco. I then found a trail up and over the big hill between me and the beach, crossing over where Discovery Heights is now, only to find that after about half an hour, when I got as far as Beard’s Hollow I could get no further without hip waders.
Since then, the Discovery Trail has been built and provides access to walkers and bicyclists year round.
beside the trail
licorice fern in tree
still pool reflections
I have read that in the UK, our native skunk cabbage is sold at a pretty price as an ornamental plant and is called “swamp lantern”. I don’t want to Google and find out it is not true. It is a gorgeous bog plant, but difficult to tranplant.
sword fern (unpruned!)
When one gets to the really big rock, one is almost at the beach. The trees have grown considerably since I used to walk here.
the big rock
Here is what the trail used to be like in winter; this is one of the roads through the dunes.
road around the rock
native stonecrop and blackberries
a small part of the rock
nature’s moss garden
At last, the beach…
to the beach
The Coast Guard helicopter flew by.
Beard’s Hollow fishing rocks
Someone had lost a bouquet, or tossed it overboard in a memorial service perhaps.
flowers and fishing rocks
The Beard’s Hollow fishing rocks have witnessed many dramatic scenes. When the tide comes in, human explorers are taken by surprise on the outer rocks and many have been rescued over the years.
rock full of birds
clues that the tide does come in
We found enough garbage in the next hour and a quarter to fill three large bags. People who drive down the beach to have a campfire…(and the beach is a legal highway, and in my opinion that is very regrettable) don’t even have to pack their garbage out on foot, so why do they leave it behind like this? Just throw it in the truck bed, folks!
They did at least put it all back in the packaging.
the south end of the long beach
While it is satisfying to fill a bag with larger items, the tiny little bits of coloured plastic are especially bad for birds. They think it is food and fill themselves up and then starve.
It would take days to fill a back with these tiny pieces
I become obsessed with picking up each one but I know that many more are tumbled under the sand.
Far in the distance with the telephoto I could see folks in groups cleaning to the north.
People enter at each of the major beach approaches or walk out from their own streets. Most start at 9:30 AM but we usually manage to roll in at about 10:15. Today about 325 signed in.
We walked down as far as this shallow seasonal stream.
The one time I do like to see vehicles on the beach “highway” is when the volunteers come along to take our bags.
loaded with debris
And then, back through the green along the beautiful trail.
a side trail around the big rock
passing the big rock
licorice fern, a tree dweller
Sambucus racemosa (red elderberry) has a tropical look.
moss and mushrooms
The trail is a draw for bicyclists as it goes all the way from Ilwaco to north of Long Beach.
discovering the trail
Discovery Trail map
We were just down at the Beard’s Hollow section. Click here for a larger view.
Next on our agenda: the volunteer soup feed reward halfway up the Peninsula at the Senior Center. Because we start late, and go late, we have been known to arrive for the very last bowls of soup, but today we arrived in time to have two choices, and we both chose clam chowder made by Steve of The Great Day Café.
soup reward for volunteers
The Senior Center is right next door to Golden Sands Assisted Living so we found it handy to check on all the new plants starts we planted yesterday, and I am happy to report they are all standing up tall…no wilting. Allan found this very nice monthly newsletter that shows how much they appreciate the courtyard garden.
from Golden Sands newsletter
Thus we segued into the work day and after going north past Nahcotta on the bay to pick up a free plastic pond (more on this later), we checked on Marilyn’s garden. My intention was to do nothing but deadhead the narcissi and move on, but oh dear…horsetail was on the march and had to be dealt with…and then my eye fell on a problem that had been bothering me for some time.
This giant Miscanthus had ended up in the foreground of the garden where it blocks the view of the Helianthus behind it. It bothers me every year.
This ornamental grass will get taller than me, and is in the wrong place.
I worried at it with the pick for a short while. Its roots are like iron. Allan decided to have a go so I went back to the horsetail, and returned to this satisfying result.
what an accomplishment!
It’s a challenge to find anything evergreen and tall to block the view of the neighbours’ driveway and garage because deer practically live in this garden…so I rely on tall deciduous plants.
Marilyn’s today, looking north from back porch
There is much to do here, especially since the plan is for this garden to be on the Peninsula garden tour in July of this year…but we had to move on to have time to check three more gardens.
At the Wiegardt Gallery, the lilac is close to bloom:
Tulip ‘Lilac Wonder’ opens wide in the faint sunshine.
The narcissi are still looking fine, but how did scilla get into the garden? I most certainly did not plant it.
This thug will be bad news. I wonder if someone else planted some bulbs to be nice? Because they are so pretty.
the dreaded scilla invasion
I have three other thugs in this garden: sweet woodruff and the bad aster that came from who knows where, and geranium ‘A.T. Johnson’ that I once thought a very fine plant indeed.
Eric’s brother sometimes plants a very choice treasure, and I am hoping that these Eremurus that he put in two years ago might flower this year.
Here’s hoping for some foxtail lilies…
We still have lots more to do at Wiegardt’s (sounds so familiar) but we had to get on to Klipsan Beach Cottages. On the way, we did a quick check up at Oman Builders Supply in Ocean Park.
There is the exciting new ‘Green Star’ tulip. Have I been calling it ‘Green Ice’?
You have to get Green Star against a dark background or it does not show up well.
It’s a lily flowering tulip and a green tulip all at once.
There were three but someone swiped one, and the finger blight evidence of twisted stem shows the person did not even have clippers but just worried the stem till the stolen tulip was theirs.
The shattered star shape of the stem is evidence…
At Klipsan Beach Cottages, we had delegated a rhododendron removal job to another landscape business, and had not expected the end result to be a bed all askew and us with no time to fix it. My fantasy was that we would find the job all done. Silly. Realistically I probably should not have hoped that a backhoe would be brought in, huge rhododendrons pulled, and then the edging put back all nicey nice (by whom?) All we could do today was deadhead the narcissi and check for weeds. Next weekend we can deal with the other problem, maybe.
narcissi in cottage windowbox
Tulip clusiana ‘Lady Jane’
in the garden
In a pot I had six Tulip ‘Green Star’ and in this safe haven, no one had picked any.
The first year I saw this in the Van Engelen catalog, I waited too long to order and they had sold out. So it was a year and a half before I had it in bloom, and I am a little obsessed with it this month.
in the garden…
two matching pots
and some Blushing Ladies
I wonder if this year at long last the Tetrapanax papyrifer ‘Steroidal [not very] Giant’ will get the size I have seen it elsewhere. It has been sulking for three years.
still only as tall as a daylily
sword fern…I like our pruned ones better than mother nature’s messy ones!
A rain squall decided our stop time at KBC but by the time we got home, the sky had cleared again. I thought I was too cold, and extra tired from getting up “early” for beach clean up, and that all I had the oomph to do was look out the window.
back garden window view
Then I remembered the pond form and had to go think about where it might go.
It probably won’t look very real…
We decided to install it next to the boat. Because of my upcoming mini-vacation (why???) we won’t have time for awhile.
While I uploaded photos to the Grassroots Garbage Gang Facebook page, Allan mowed the lawn. He reports that it takes an hour and a quarter. Less than it did last year because of my winter expansion of the garden beds.
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