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Posts Tagged ‘sedum autumn joy’

By Marsh’s Free Museum and Captain Bob’s Chowder, our favourite perennial bed in Long Beach grows in the northwest corner of Fifth Street Park.  Here it is through the year in 2015.

The only plant left from the original design is Dorothy Perkins rose along the back.  We suggest ‘Super Dorothy’ instead, for a disease resistant rose.  The plants: Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’ (catmint) and Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ along the front, Melianthus major, Baptisia australis (false indigo), a maroon daylily (since removed), cosmos, Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’, lilies

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Thursday, 20 November 2014

Nelly’s garden

I was shocked to awake this morning to nice-ish weather.  The plan had been to do the Nelly bulbs project on a rainy day as it was a garden shed job.  I wanted to get the Port and the Boreas done instead!  I thought, however, that Nelly might have some outdoor projects in mind as well, and when we arrived at her house just two blocks down the street, I was right.  The dahlias had gone down from frost and they and some other perennials needed clipping.

Allan gets started on clipping.

Allan gets started on clipping and on a mission to get rid of the Bad Aster..

Nelly told me that someone had given her a start of the running blue aster years ago and she has been trying to get rid of it ever since.

after; the tall plant to the left is a hardy fuchsia

after

Allan would also be the one to dig the flowerpots of bulbs back into the ground.

center garden before adding pots

center garden before adding pots

Nelly came out to the shed to show me her bulbing method, and also told us there had been a misunderstanding last time, one that is of a type so familiar to me.  She asked her spouse, Don, to come out and tell us to cut down “the pink flowers”.  He did so, and pointed to Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’, in the center of the square bed, above.  I said “Are you sure?  Some poeple like to look at the dried flower heads all winter.”  He was sure.  Turns out what Nelly meant was to cut to the ground the two escallonia shrubs along the back that Don had partly pruned.  Escallonias have pink flowers, too!

To the right, by the fence: two stubby escallonias

To the right, by the fence: two stubby escallonias

I’m tempted to find some flowerheads in my garden of the sedum and stick them in with the clipped plants in that center bed so that Nelly can see them from her kitchen window.  It would be easy to do and a fun surprise.  At first, I thought of adding whole plants, and then realized just the strong-stemmed flat flower heads would do.

warm tones of Sedum 'Autumn Joy' dead flowers...before the chop.

Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’: I grow it in most of my gardens, and the dried flowers are  sturdy enough to stick in the ground and hold up till next spring.  The ones in this photo are at Klipsan Beach Cottages.

I started the bulb project.  Nelly showed me that she dumped out each pot of tulips or narcissi or hyacinth in a round plastic dish, removed the bulbs, then placed them back in the pot on top of some of the old soil mixed with bone meal, and filled in with new potting soil from a bag.

garden shed work area with plastic sorting bowl and bucket of new potting soil

garden shed work area with plastic sorting bowl and bucket of new potting soil

It did not take me long before the work area looked like this:

The plastic bowl was not enough sorting space for me!

The plastic bowl was not enough sorting space for me!

Nelly has good luck getting tulips to rebloom this way.  The pots get pulled out of the ground after blooming, sit by the side of the garage on a plank all summer, and get put into the garden shed before fall rains come, ready to be resorted and placed back out in the garden again.  They had been labeled “kitchen” (under kitchen window), “garage” (a narrow bed beside the garage) and “garden’; over the summer, a helper had pulled the labels out so there’s no telling what the colour mix will be.

tulips bulbs

tulips bulbs

some sort of small narcissi

some sort of small narcissi

Fortunately, I can at least tell tulips, narcissi and hyacinth bulbs apart.

I had enough spare narcissi bulbs (due to the way they multiply) to put some little ones along the narrow wooden planter by the back steps.

planter

There’s also a pot sunk into the tiny garden bed to the left.

In the summer, perennials and dahlias blowse out and cover the spots where the bulb pots go in the fall through spring.

I had a client back in Seattle who did the same thing but replaced the pots of spring bulbs with pots of annuals in the summer.

I set out the pots each time I finished two, for Allan to plant.

I set out the pots each time I finished two, for Allan to plant.

ready to go in

Allan’s photos: ready to go in

IMG_1791

 

pots in the ground

pots in the ground

IMG_1794

Allan’s tidy nature made him perfect for getting the pots in all nicey nice.

Meanwhile, he had cut back the escallonia level with the ground.  I think Don will just mow over it and turn it into a lawn path; the shrubs were placed where it would be more natural to have a walk- through.

Allan's photos:  before

Allan’s photos: before

hand pruner and rechargable chain saw

hand pruner and rechargable chain saw

leveled out

leveled out

after

after

I know from having done the same thing to two big escallonias at the Wiegardt Gallery that if they are cut level and then any new sprouts taken off, the shrubs will disappear.  If left alone and not mowed over, they might resprout and grow again.

When I went in to say the job was done, Nelly was pleased at how quickly we had accomplished it.  She showed me her latest quilt in progress.

Mail Attachment

I especially like the way slanted yellow lines makes the pattern intriguingly asyemmtrical.

I especially like the way slanted yellow lines makes the pattern intriguingly asyemmtrical.

little houses

little houses

and flowers

and flowers

Nelly has been a member of the Peninsula Quilt Guild for over 20 years.

I admired their wood stove.  Although it is not an antique, it was built from an Amish design.  I thought it would keep the kitchen warm when the power goes out in storms; Nelly said unfortunately, strong winds make the chimney backdraft so it’s not helpful in a windstorm power outage.

It sure is pretty, though.

It sure is pretty, though.

Port of Ilwaco

We still had some hours of daylight left and the predicted rain had not arrived, so we went down to finish the port gardens.

before, Howerton Way garden north of the Port Office

before, Howerton Way garden north of the Port Office

After Allan trimmed the lavenders and cut back the Gaura 'Whirling Butterfly'

after Allan trimmed the lavenders and cut back the Gaura ‘Whirling Butterfly’

Allan's before....

Allan’s before….

and after photos.  Most of the low feathery foliage is of California poppies.

and after photos. Most of the low feathery foliage is of California poppies.

Meanwhile, I clipped a few plants in the garden bed on the south side of the port office.

before

before

after creating two buckets of debris

after creating two buckets of debris

my view, looking south

my view, looking south

my audience

my audience

In the photo below, you can see a black crane (not the bird) in the far distance, behind the boats.

crane

That’s the US Army Corps of Engineers dredge, which is working on keeping the port channel deep enough for boats.  Nancy Beesley, who works at the Port Office and co-administrates the Discover Ilwaco Facebook page with me, took some photos of the dredge yesterday, which I think you will like to see.    You can read more about it in this recent article.

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

I think this is the port's own, smaller dredge.  photo by Nancy Beesley

I think this is the port’s own, smaller dredge. photo by Nancy Beesley

dredge repairs, photo by Nancy Beesley

dredge repairs, photo by Nancy Beesley

local Port of Ilwaco dredge crew, photo by Nancy Beesley

local Port of Ilwaco dredge crew, photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

photo by Nancy Beesley

our little harbour

our little harbour

Back to today:  Don Nisbett was at his art gallery next door to the Port Office, so I got a chance to deliver Jenna’s two bags of biochar soil right to his truck.

behind the gallery

behind the gallery

Ok, back to work.  We drove east down Howerton to the garden by the Ilwaco Pavilion where I knew a gaura waited to be cut down.

center: Gaura lindheimeri 'Whirling Butterflies', crisped by frost.

center: Gaura lindheimeri ‘Whirling Butterflies’, crisped by frost.

I cut it back that hard,

I cut it back that hard,

This particular bed is one of my favourite port gardens this year.

This particular bed is one of my favourite port gardens this year.

While Allan went to the field east of the marina to dump debris, I did some weeding of maddening little grasses in the easternmost bed.  There is still a little scrim of tiny green grass here and here.  It can wait now till February; Allan commented that to him, it just looks like moss.

Looking west down Howerton and calling this job done for the year.

Looking west down Howerton and calling this job done for the year.

Looking southwest across the parking lot, I could see a nice photo to be had...

Looking southwest across the parking lot, I could see a nice photo to be had…

We were running out of daylight so I resisted scenic photo opportunities in order to try to get one more job done.

Boreas Inn

We had an hour and a half-ish till dark to drive up to Long Beach and do some clipping back and weeding at the Boreas Inn garden.

The nasturtiums by the front walk way were most definitely done.

The nasturtiums by the front walk way were most definitely done.

Boreas Inn, east side

Boreas Inn, east side

We worked like mad and managed to get the job done enough to say that the garden is put to bed for the winter.

Boreas, looking east from beach path

Boreas, looking east from beach path

We finished at dusk.

We finished at dusk.

path to the beach, looking west

path to the beach, looking west

I was so focused on finishing that I did not realize until we got into the van that it had been raining lightly.

rain

Cove Restaurant

Of course, we had to reward ourselves with our traditonal Thursday dinner at the Cove.  I texted fellow gardener Ed Strange (Strange Landscape Services) who joined us.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Coziness at the Cove

Coziness at the Cove

Chef Jason was back from a brief surfing vacation with his Thursday Chef's Mercy menu.

Chef Jason was back from a brief surfing vacation with his Thursday Chef’s Mercy menu.

2

roasted beet salad

roasted beet salad

Ed got Prawns Solo...

Ed got Prawns Solo…

and a yakisoba bowl.

and a yakisoba bowl.

Allan and I both got the Thai Beef Curry.  It smelled so good that we both tucked in before I took a photo.

Allan's, with rice added

Allan’s, with rice added

Because of living in a small town area, we saw Lisa of the Hydrangea House, Seaview Patti, and Basket Case Fred also out for dinner.

home

At home, I had the sheer delight of erasing almost all jobs from the work board:

photo

We now can declare staycation can commence.  We are due for some rainy days which may delay the final check up of Marilyn’s garden for a few days.  The Depot window box clean up is contingent on the annuals finally dying.  The planting of the memorial garden and the mulching of Golden Sands are projects for 2015, and the post office is volunteer, and here is home, so theose mulching projects don’t count as work.

Time to put our feet up and watch telly.  We’d like to finish the Bill Nighy show (Page Eight) that we’ve been too tired to finish for the last two nights, and then there’s Hell’s Kitchen, a truly silly show and yet I will watch pretty much anything by Gordon Ramsay.

I see a problem, though.  I’m not sure there is room in my chair.

cats

 

 

 

 

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Thursday, 9 October 2014

next door to the Ilwaco post office, first sign of Ilwaco's Halloween extravaganza

next door to the Ilwaco post office, first sign of Ilwaco’s Halloween extravaganza

The Depot Restaurant

I was convinced that rain would arrive tomorrow and so we were determined to get several jobs ready for the weekend.

The Depot's late blooming cosmos, some of which still have not bloomed at all.

The Depot’s late blooming cosmos, some of which still have not bloomed at all.

I wish I knew which cosmos cultivar was the extremely late blooming one; I probably would not use it again as some have not bloomed yet at all. I mixed up the cultivars when planting, though, so it’s a mystery.

east wall with Lonicera 'Baggeson's Gold' and  Nicotiana langsdorfii

east wall with Lonicera ‘Baggeson’s Gold’ and
Nicotiana langsdorfii

window boxes; trimmed out some dead foliage

window boxes; trimmed out some dead foliage

Long Beach welcome sign

Next year, the Cosmos ‘Happy Ring’ (which I expected to be shorter) should go to the back with the Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’ (if I can bear another year of deadheading it) in the middle!

front of the welcome sign

front of the welcome sign

the back of the sign; loving the pink and white

the back of the sign; loving the pink and white (agyranthemum, blue painted sage, Cosmos ‘Happy Ring’, white bacopa on the edge)

Red Barn Arena

Over on Sandridge Road at the Red Barn, we cut down Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ along the fence.

Allan in the middle of the project

Allan in the middle of the project

Later, Allan found this photo of what the garden had looked like on July 23rd.

Later, Allan found this photo of what the garden had looked like on July 23rd.

the barn itself

the barn itself

Not only do I dislike the yellow evening primrose at one end of the garden, but the foliage of reseeded thuggish plants was disgustingly mildewed….

quite unattractive

quite unattractive

I was thrilled to pull out all of the yellow evening primrose.

Allan finished the job with a pile of bronze fennel.

Allan finished the job with a pile of bronze fennel. I plan to divide that ornamental grass in early spring. (I believe the notion that they don’t like to be divided in the fall.)

after clean up

after clean up, Allan’s photo

A horse grazed in an unusual place: inside the playground. Only two small ropes were enough to contain him.

ropes

horse

grazing

horse

By the adjacent pole building, stacked crab pots were being shifted around by forklift.

pots

An electrical cord was stretched on the ground from the barn to the pole building, and a thick board was placed across it. Allan chose to drive on the cord rather than the board to get to the debris dumping spot, earning a fierce scowl from one of the workers. So when we drove back to the main parking area, he drove across the board…which of course got caught in his tires, as he knew it would, and dragged along. He wished the scowling man would have seen that, but scowling man did not see.

the board in question

The board in question did not make a good bridge.

We went next door to Diane’s garden, and when we returned to the van I was amused to see all kinds of cardboard boxes lines up to make sure people drove across the board.

THAT'll show us!

THAT’ll show us!

Diane’s Garden

Diane's roadside garden with blue Perovskia (Russian sage)

Diane’s roadside garden with blue Perovskia (Russian sage)

road

on Sandridge Road

The strawberry…thingie…that is so rampant in this garden is creeping down the driveway rocks, as well.

It's on the move.

It’s on the move.

Against the house, a Cerinthe major purpurascens is reaching a surprising height.

It's this tall.

It’s this tall.

and just now starting to bloom, quite late.

and just now starting to bloom, quite late.

Osteospermum "spoons" in  one of Diane's planters

Osteospermum “spoons” in one of Diane’s planters

interlude

We drove across Pioneer Road toward The Anchorage Cottages and saw the cranberry harvest in session at the Cranberry Research Station. We hope to get to the harvesting demonstration this weekend during the Cranberrian Fair.

harvest time

harvest time

research station and Cranberry Museum

research station and Cranberry Museum

Anchorage Cottages

My good friend Mitzu the Shih tzu greeted me at The Anchorage.

My good friend Mitzu the Shih tzu greeted me at The Anchorage.

Anchorage garden bed near the office

Anchorage garden bed near the office; the virburnum I cut to the ground is coming back all nice and fresh.

I saw an ominous sight: the viburnum close to the center courtyard had been browsed by deer. This bodes ill for plants in the center courtyard.

nipped viburnum foliage

nipped viburnum foliage

Will the courtyard be next?

Will the courtyard plants be next?

by the center courtyard arbour: deer-chomped rose foliage

by the center courtyard arbour: deer-chomped rose foliage

And there were deer tracks in the south courtyard, where manager Beth had dug up a bunch of tatty old lady’s mantle. (YAY, Beth!)

south courtyard

south courtyard

I had the pleasure of Mitzu following me all around the gardens.

mitzu

mitzu

City of Long Beach

After the Anchorage, we checked the planters on the two beach approach roads (Bolstadt and Sid Snyder) as we knew clamming would brings lots of passersby. Indeed, we did some clean up on both approaches.

While we tidied up the Bolstadt planter by the Long Beach arch, Buster (who lives in the townhouses to the south of the arch) came to visit us.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Buster (Allan's photo)

Buster (Allan’s photo)

Buster (Allan's photo)

Buster (Allan’s photo)

I do so much love a happy Pug.

I do so much love a happy Pug.

Crocosmia 'Lucifer' in a Sid Snyder planter (originally planted by a volunteer)

Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ in a Sid Snyder planter (originally planted by a volunteer)

a rather dull planter when it's pulled out (Allan's photo)

a rather dull planter when it’s pulled out (Allan’s photo)

On Sid Snyder, we cut back the old foliage from behind new flowers on the Echinops (blue globe thistle)

On Sid Snyder, we cut back the old foliage from behind new flowers on the Echinops (blue globe thistle)

Allan checked on the Kite Museum garden while I worked on more Sid Snyder planters.

Allan checked on the Kite Museum garden while I worked on more Sid Snyder planters.

our little kite museum garden (Allan's photo)

our little kite museum garden (Allan’s photo)

I then walked around downtown deadheading and grooming planters, while Allan worked on Coulter Park and Fifth Street Park garden beds.

At the south end of downtown is a great example of Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ that I only partly cut back in very late spring.

smaller, pink flowers from the cut part, and big flowers, already browning, on the part that was not cut.

smaller, pink flowers from the cut part, and big flowers, already browning, on the part that was not cut.

difference

a good argument for always cutting Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ in half in late spring.

The ones that were trimmed have smaller flowers and stay more upright.

The ones that were trimmed have smaller flowers and stay more upright.

Further up the block, pink sweetpeas echo the colour of the pink ribbons that were tied around town for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

pink

The planter with dahlias by the credit union still looks fabulous:

dahlias

dahlias

dahlias

In front of the Herb N Legend Smoke Shop:

Star Cluster Coreopsis and a double Osteospermum

‘Star Cluster’ Coreopsis and a double Osteospermum

By Fifth Street Park, my one asphodeline is blooming again. I wish I had lots more of it. It’s not available in any local nursery.

Agyranthemum 'Butterfly' and one spike of Asphodeline.

Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’ and one spike of Asphodeline.

beautiful asphodeline foliage

beautiful asphodeline foliage

In the same planter, daisies that were cut all the way down in late summer have new flowers.

In the same planter, daisies that were cut all the way down in late summer have new flowers. And one dead leaf that got picked off right after this photo.

All along the west side of the downtown blocks, it seemed someone had walked through town and just lightly trashed the planters….just bits of Sedum flowers and lavender spikes pulled off and thrown on the sidewalk. I can only assume someone was grabbing at each planter as s/he walked by and making a small but annoying mess. When I got to the planter by the Cottage Bakery on the east side, I found more annoyance.

three painted sage pulled right out of the soil

three painted sage pulled right out of the soil

Oh well, I was tired of deadheading them anyway! Into the trash they went.

same planter, after, still looks fine.

same planter, after, still looks fine.

However, if the painted sage is allowed to stay and gets deadheaded, it still looks good, like the pink one in this photo, next to Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve'.

However, if the painted sage is allowed to stay and gets deadheaded, it still looks good, like the pink one in this photo, next to Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’.

The most excellent planter by the Campiche Gallery.  Note: more dahlias and more small hardy fuchsias next year.

The most excellent planter by the Campiche Gallery. Note: more dahlias and more small hardy fuchsias next year. I’ll get another couple of weeks out of that pink and blue painted sage (right side), if no one messes with it.

Meanwhile, in Coulter Park:

Allan trimmed some of the Siberian iris...

Allan trimmed some of the Siberian iris…

after

after

before

before

after (still more to do)

after (still more to do)

By the time I met Allan back at Fifth Street Park, a heavy fog had rolled in over the town.

Fifth Street Park in fog.

Fifth Street Park in fog.

Fog had settled in over the former water treatment pond in the city works yard where we dump our debris.

The pond is no longer used for water treatment, as the city now has a modern sewer plant.

The pond is no longer used for water treatment, as the city now has a modern sewer plant.

wetlands by the city works yard

wetlands by the city works yard

The Cove Restaurant

We repaired to the Cove for our traditional Thursday night dinner.

fog over the Peninsula Golf Course

fog over the Peninsula Golf Course

fog

the view from our table

the view from our table

Chef Jason's menu for the evening

Chef Jason’s menu for the evening

delicious hard cider and beer

delicious hard cider and beer

I had the new Cranberry Coast Salad...delectable

We shared the new Cranberry Coast Salad…delectable

and ahi tuna of course

and ahi tuna. of course

Allan had fish tacos (the specialty of the evening, only $2 each)

Allan had fish tacos (the specialty of the evening, only $2 each)

This time, we saved room for strawberry rhubarb pie!

This time, we saved room for strawberry rhubarb pie!

During our dessert course, our friend Ivanna showed up and sat at our table.

Ivanna is always a hoot.

Ivanna is always a hoot.

I felt all relaxed because I was sure that rain would give us Friday off. I was mistaken.

 

 

 

 

 

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Thursday, 14 November, 2013

Although we had a big bulbing day planned, we just had to make a brief stop at Olde Towne to see Luanne, who had been gone for 13 days to visit her daughter, son-in-law and grand daughters in Maine.

She's back!

She’s back!

We had the briefest of visits (she had time to sit at a table for maybe two minutes) and then we had to be on our way till a rainy day.  Soon we will be back for a proper sit down, I hope!

I had hoped that today would be the rainy day as I would have liked to have had time to sort, at home on the sorting table (with my sorting hat on?) the Long Beach bulbs into tidy batches with a bag ready for each planter.  That did not happen.  However, being able to set the boxes with easy access from the side doors of our new van made it possible to sort right on the job.  That is the main reason that this year, we are experiencing Bulb Time rather than Bulb Hell.  The new vehicle and the pleasant weather are collaborating to make it the easiest bulbs season in my experience.  Getting bulb crates into and out of Allan’s two door Saturn was not a happy time.

easy sorting

easy access

I had a little “office” set up on my passenger seat with clipboard and pen.  What luxury.

Down by the empty lot on Third Street, where the birds had view unimpeded by building of me setting tasty morsels of bulbs out on the edge of the planters, I garnered lots of attention.

These two...

These two…

and especially this one.

and especially this one.

The gull who staked out the bulbs actually did not get a single one, but it sure did want to.

gull

pacing and plotting

pacing and plotting

closer

closer

gull

acting cool near the bag of bulbs

acting cool near the bag of bulbs

Only my presence right there kept him thwarted.

Only my presence right there kept him thwarted.

Years ago, I learned not to lay out bulbs all down the length of the beach approach garden before planting them.

bulb planting on the beach approach in 2004

bulb planting on the beach approach in 2004

(Now that rugosa roses have pretty much taken over the beach approach garden and now that we have full care of the Long Beach planters, we don’t plant many new bulbs out there anymore.)

There are a few businesses with such a strong colour theme that I try to plant bulbs that sort of match.

Tulip 'White Parrot' in fron the blue and white Home at the Beach gift shop.

I planted Tulip ‘White Parrot’ in fron the blue and white Home at the Beach gift shop.

Red Parrot tulip 'Rococo' did very well last year so I planted more near this red cottage.

Red Parrot tulip ‘Rococo’ did very well last year so I planted more near this red cottage.

The lower tulip is 'Rococo', last spring.

The lower tulip is ‘Rococo’, last spring.

A couple of years ago I had the perfect colour match for the Hungry Harbour Grille:

Tulip 'Gavota' matched the paint trim perfectly.

Tulip ‘Gavota’ matched the paint trim perfectly.

The Cottage Bakery also called for red 'Rococo'.

This year, The Hungry Harbor and The Cottage Bakery both got Rococo.

Red tulips are my least favourite (except for the fabulous ‘Rococo’ with its green flames).  I always have plenty of “green” tulips as they are my favourites.  That makes it easy to plant green ones in front of Niva green.

Niva green, last spring

Niva green, last spring; this year it will get ‘Green Wave’

Maybe some year I will buy tulips in tiny (more expensive) quantities so that I can match every building!

I tried not to do any projects other than planting, but one that did need doing today was to dig out two big, old, woody Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ from a planter by the Fifth Street Park.

Allan used our cool new shovel from Back Alley Gardens in Gearhart.

Allan used our cool new shovel from Back Alley Gardens in Gearhart.

old Sedum 'Autumn Joy'

old Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’

woody center

woody center

I have many Autumn Joy sedums around and so I just went to the park and got two fresh new division for the planter, after Allan added some new potting soil.  I think every Autumn Joy in every park and garden that we do on the Peninsula is a division of the one I brought down from Seattle in autumn of 1992!

While on the same block, I enjoyed seeing two peace posters in the “Herb ‘N’ Legend” smoke shop windows.

peace

peace

While Schizostylis can fill up a planter too vigourously, it can also choose to bloom in a perfect late season floral arrangement.

Schizostylis by Fifth Street

Schizostylis by Fifth Street

I had a passerby ask me about it today, but she did so when I was not by a planter than had it, or I would have yanked some up and given it to her.  Later, when I was working by The Wooden Horse gift shop, manager Linda came out and saw a blooming piece of this very Schizostylis in our trailer (accidentally pulled while planting bulbs by the lamp post) so I gave the rooted piece to her;  I should dig her up a nice clump!

outside The Wooden Horse...I like the sign with clothespins for photos or postcards.

outside The Wooden Horse…I like the sign with clothespins for photos or postcards.

Today’s easiest planter was the one by the Carousel where we had dug out vinca recently and replaced it with nice fluffy dirt.  I was glad to see no birds watching this one as the bulbs would be easy picking with no plants to protect them.

The easiest planter to plant was the one by the carousel...recently dug out vinca and replaced with fluffy soil.

The easiest planter today.

I put in two little golden marjoram starts (dug from another planter) and two little Sedumn ‘Autumn Joy’ starts (snagged from a park).

Hungry Harbor Grille

Hungry Harbor Grille

When I got as far as The Hungry Harbor Grille, I remembered that tonight is Mexican night (every Thursday offseason) and that, because I had finished the big bulb sorting, we could go after work!

It had taken, as always, what seemed an incredible long time to get just that far.  Some rain began.  I examined the sky.  Was the blue just a sucker hole?

This is what a sucker hole looks like.

This is what a sucker hole looks like.

The blue came through for me and the rain stopped.

While Allan planted the last planters on the block south of the Bolstadt stop light, I put tiny bulbs in the four Fish Alley barrels.  The tapestry effect I was trying for is still working.

Fish Alley, one of four planters

Fish Alley, one of four planters

In went some species crocus, some Iris reticulata, some snowdrops and some Narcissi ‘Baby Moon’.  I plant Baby Moon every year and am adding 410 more to the planters this year because it reliably blooms during the annual first-Satuday-in-May parade.

Moon rise over Fish Alley

Moon rise over Fish Alley

From the alley, I could see the most amazing sky to the west:  wild shapes of clouds outline in pink.  I had bulbs all placed ready to plant and could not abandon them and a building was between me and any long distance photo of the sky.  We did get out to the beach.  While the clouds still looked impressive, the outline of pink had gone.

beyond the boardwalk

beyond the boardwalk

I will scour Facebook to see if any local caught the sunset on film!

I will scour Facebook to see if any local caught the sunset on film!

It was mildly frustrating to have run out of daylight with eight planters and two trees still to do on the main street.  It always takes me by surprise what a long job it is to plant the bulbs there.

We had our comforting Mexican dinner and came home, NOT to sort bulbs.  Instead, I finally added thirteen days of time card information to the work spread sheet.  Sometimes this blog is essential to remembering what we did on a certain day.

And the cats snoozed…

Smokey and Mary

Smokey and Mary

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August 19, 2013

This post waxes political for a bit, so for pure gardening, move on to August 20!

We began our back to work day with the usual walk to the back garden to check on the greenhouse.  There was little time to goof off; after the hot weather of Sunday, much watering needed to be done at work.

Mary would have preferred I stay home.

Mary would have preferred I stay home.

front garden by the driveway, looking east, Sanguisorba

front garden by the driveway, looking east, Sanguisorba

looking east on the other side of grass path, front garden

looking east on the other side of grass path, front garden

Just down the block and across Pearl, we watered and deadheaded at Larry and Robert's.

Just down the block and across Pearl, we watered and deadheaded at Larry and Robert’s.

porch

porch

Echinacea 'Green Envy' by the Larry Robert porch

Echinacea ‘Green Envy’ by the Larry Robert porch

We need more rocks for their back garden but have been...goofing off!

We need more rocks for their back garden but have been…goofing off!

It’s handy working so close to home because we can stop by the house before heading out again.  As I was getting back into the van, I saw Tom and Judy waving from down the street.  Here they are, as I always say, just four doors down!

Tom and Judy

Tom and Judy

There is a little house between the Hornbuckle garden and Mary’s big hedge, and then there are the two shrubs at Nora’s house.

Tom and Judy started walking our way to go “cucumber farming”; our edible garden is so successful in the cuke department that we have plenty to share.

nice!

nice!

We departed for the watering of Long Beach.   In the parking lot there, I noticed another delight in our new van: a handy place for our water bottles.  This will be hidden by a plant shelf during annuals planting season.  (It might not be such a hellish season anymore with a large vehicle to work with.)

Then I saw an all too common sight

not nice!

not nice!

in Long Beach, by which I mean we see this a couple of times a month on our twice weekly parking in the big lots east of the main street: dropped diapers.  Yes, people change their babies, just drop the diapers on the parking lot and drive off.  The mind boggles.  The Long Beach city crew is the best around for keeping the town clean and picking up trash.  I am sure they see this all too often.

So we began the watering round of the 37 planters and 6 whiskey barrels and two stage planters.  We could not take any water out to the planters on Bolstadt because the beach approach was full of kite festival booths and closed to traffic.

The painted sage is starting to brown off, so one planter can take a good long time to deadhead.  One cuts down to the lower buds so that smaller flowers will appear later to keep the show going.

Salvia viridis (painted sage)

Salvia viridis (painted sage)

no longer at its best

no longer at its best

half an hour later

half an hour later

In the same planter, a cute little resident hopped out of the plants.

Pacific tree frog hiding by the bench

Pacific tree frog hiding by the bench

From this very planter, I had a view while working of something that repeatedly annoys and upsets me in Long Beach:  the confederate flag flying at a motel gift shop:

It hurts my eyes.

It hurts my eyes and my heart because I dislike the message it gives to the many people who drive into our pretty little tourist town.  To me it is a symbol of racism, a reaction that is, I believe, shared by many.  “According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, more than 500 extremist groups use the Southern Cross as one of their symbols.” [Read more: Confederate Flag Controversy | Infoplease.com http://www.infoplease.com/spot/confederate1.html#ixzz2dQLwX2bo]

When I first noticed this flag I talked to the young man who owns the motel, to no avail.  (A satisfactory conclusion to me would have been that he stopped flying it, or at least hung it instead on the front door of his motel which is set back half a block from the main street.)   I wanted to know why he would fly a flag that would be distressing to some tourists, especially when he knows full well that other shopkeepers and at least one city official have objected to its effect on the happy welcoming nature of our town.  It’s not like putting up a poster for, say, a political candidate about whom a passing tourist might disagree.   It’s a symbol with a long and upsetting history.  The conversation went in circles.  When I posted about it on my Facebook profile, I got the response from all but one friend (including some who grew up in the south) that it is a symbol of hatred and is disturbing, “chilling”, even “sickening” to see it in Long Beach.  One person felt it was harmless and a symbol of rebellion.

Months later, it still flies.  Some people may think it is not a confederate flag because it has a motorcycle on it.  (Might I add that my friend who goes by the internet moniker “Harley Lady” does not like this flag, Harley-fied as she may be!)  On this work Monday, I noticed something new:  small confederate flags also for sale outside his shop.

Where is the motorcycle on this one, buster?

Where is the motorcycle on this one?

I had to do some deep breathing to calm down and go back to gardening.  I plan my route on days when the motel shop is open so that I do not walk on that side of the street.  I don’t want that flag to brush above my head.

shop

Just know that there are some of who live, work or shop in Long Beach who don’t want a flag with racist and segregationist connotations to be part of the town we love. I know of another Long Beach shop that got some little confederate flags in a shipment of many little flags and would not display them.  (Thank you.)

So, having reached the south end of town, I headed back up, crossing the street to avoid the flagged gift shop.  Another time, I could feel my blood pressure surging as I walked by the shop; it was the day I was informed it was not really a confederate flag because of the motorcycle.  Fortunately, on that day I encountered an acquaintance who felt the same way as I about the flag, and who also had walking with him his daughter and her very cute new baby who cheered me up almost as much as a puppy would have!

Back to thoughts of gardening:

I still regret the Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ that I did not get around to cutting back by half in early June.

unpruned, it splays open

unpruned, it splays open

Pruned at the right time, it stays compact with smaller, later flowers.

Pruned at the right time, it stays compact with smaller, later flowers.

chrysanthemums; I love their sharp scent.

chrysanthemums; I love their sharp scent.

a classic and joyous Long Beach sight: tourists doing the frying pan photo

a classic and joyous Long Beach sight: tourists doing the frying pan photo

We finished our day watering the street trees and planters in Ilwaco.  Alongside an old abandoned building at the main intersection, I eyed the great big huge dandelions and…then realized I could be the one to pull them even though it is “not my job.”

I pulled, after this photo, but the roots are still under the building...

I pulled, after this photo, but the roots are still under the building…

Around the other corner of the building (which used to be occupied but needs some work to be safe to use), some blackberries defeated me because I was not gloved up to handle them.

SEP=Someone's Else's Problem

SEP=Someone’s Else’s Problem

Greenery is not as much of an eyesore for me as that danged flag…

Oh no, we were a day late watering Ilwaco planters and the Sanvitalia had wilted!

I knew from experience it would perk right up.

I knew from experience it would perk right up.

I have to admit that the tedium of bucket watering after filling 20 five gallon buckets does inspire us to try to time the watering to do it only every third day.  In hot weather, that is not enough.

Allan called me from two blocks away to let me know there was a puppy coming my way.  These nice people let me pet their pup, but I forgot to take a photo except for this one as they walked back to their boat (probably) from the grocery store.

pup!

pup! with the boatyard garden in the background

I am more determined every time I weed the street tree gardens to get rid of the brick edging, fill in with soil, and just keep the plants clipped back.  It is a bugger to weed around these bricks, and they are sunken and uneven.  (Not my job!)

They are horrible, labour intensive, and have got to go.

They are horrible, labour intensive, and have got to go.

Since then, I have sent to a message to a member of the parks commission to see if they can re-use the bricks in a park project.  (Waiting for a reply.)

In the boatyard garden, the wild, white, tall clover thingie has popped up here and there…with roots like iron.

It has a gorgeous bloom but would take over if I let it.

It has a gorgeous bloom but would take over if I let it.

boatyard garden, not very colourful today, looking south

boatyard garden, not very colourful today, looking south

looking north, loving the 'Hopley's Purple' oregano

looking north, loving the ‘Hopley’s Purple’ oregano

new flowers on just one of the Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue'!

new flowers on just one of the Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’!

But uh oh!!  Someone mowed the field of long grass where we traditionally dump wheelbarrows of debris from the boatyard garden.  (Shhhh….)

Now what?

Now what?

It was mowed once a few years ago and grew back….

We watered at Time Enough Books as well and admired a brand new sign.

Time Enough Books

Time Enough Books

The shop is named after the haunting Twilight Zone episode, Time Enough at Last.

At home, I got excited about the idea of a brand new project.  Ever since seeing the scree garden at the Vernon garden on the recent CASA garden tour,  I have wanted to find a spot for my very own scree garden. (Four “gardens” in one sentence!)   So how about ripping many of the plants out of this front section that looks great till about July and then peters out:

bored now

bored now

And what if I dug out all of the sod and replaced it with gravel in this entire section AND further back around the beds by Nora’s driveway AND the grass path running west to east in the front garden?  In other words, gravel all the paths outside the deer fence!

All this awful lawn could be gravel instead!

All this awful lawn could be gravel instead!

With great enthusiasm, I grabbed the half moon edger and cut a strip.  It was so hard!  Allan helped, but….

one measly strip cut

one measly strip cut

my big idea to cut enough each week to fill the garbage can, thus getting rid of the lawn by staycation time, came to a halt.  I think it needs to wait till the ground softens in rainy weather.  And I also had better remember that gravel might take more maintenance than just mowing the dried up lawn.  (But would look so great.)

Just after I had given up on filling the wheelie bin, Mary from three doors down and her friend Carrie came to tour the garden.  Carrie was so very enthusiastic and appreciative that it made a wonderful end to a long and varied day.

Mary and Carrie in the garden at dusk.

Mary and Carrie in the garden at dusk.

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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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I procrastinated all morning, but there were reasons: catching up on the blog, and bad (ish) weather. Maybe I was sick of planting plants, but I had many to plant here and needed to get started. Finally I got myself outside with the memory that I had very much been looking forward to another go-round of pulling Impatiens (jewelweed, touch me not) out of the front border.

2:38 PM, front garden

2:38 PM, front garden

after editing

after editing

I need to learn to mark the spot where I take my before photo to make the results more clear!

I was amazed at how big this cardoon has gotten since last time I noticed:

humungous

humungous

Another task that I had been longing to do in the back garden was to use the hedge shears to lop back the Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’. It gets so lush that it flops open. Last year for the garden tour I had to use all sorts of short bits of rebar to hold it up and make it halfway decent looking. By chopping it at this time of year, the plant stays more compact and still flowers, but with smaller, not so heavy flowers so it does not fall open. I recently did the same to all the ‘Autumn Joy’ in the Long Beach planters.

before

before

Unfortunately, when I tried to use the hedge shears my right arm protested mightily. It has been plaguing me for two days….”planter’s arm”, apparently. Allan stepped in and did the job.

after (but not picked up yet)

after (but not picked up yet)

The creeping sorrel in the raspberry patch had suddenly leaped to almost as tall as the berry canes.

Yikes!  When did that happen?

Yikes! When did that happen?

After running some errands of his own, Allan stepped in here also and did a wonderful job.

Thank you, Allan!

Thank you, Allan!

By then, I was heavily into planting annuals and perennials. I told myself I would get at least thirty plants planted before I let myself get back to the enjoyable task of weeding, and I am sure I surpassed that number. While planting on the west side of the house, I kept catching myself thinking “Nora and Devery will like these.” (Devery was Nora’s wonderful caregiver.) Then I would remember with a huge pang that Nora was gone. I had made sure over the last two years that the west side garden that she can, I mean could, see from her front window was vibrant with bright colour.

Tomorrow planting hell will surely conclude, because all I have left to plant are these:

holding area on east side of house

holding area on east side of house

(Not as bad as it looks, because some of those are in permanent pots. Probably about ten plants there that need planting.)

And this line up on the path to Allan’s shop:

mostly cosmos and painted sage, and some of the cosmos will go to Ann's on Tuesday.

mostly cosmos and painted sage, and some of the cosmos will go to Ann’s on Tuesday.

Then there are some tomatoes in the greenhouse, and I could have done them during the blustery morning inside the greenhouse, had I remembered them!

tomatoes

tomatoes

Oh, drat, and these also, which I almost forgot were waiting next to the greenhouse.

more cosmos.  I like them.

more cosmos. I like them.

So tomorrow will be the planting of the six packs of cosmos all over this garden.

The relatively small amount of cosmos that will be left for Ann, along with two Penstemon ‘Burgundy Brew’ for two wine connoisseur clients, two Rosemary for Chef Michael at the Depot, and …oh….I should get some blue and white painted sage for the mayor’s garden….Those plants that are left are not enough to constitute a hellish amount of planting. So I am fervently hoping that by eight PM tomorrow I can declare annuals planting hell over for 2013.

My right arm will be grateful.

At almost dusk, I took a walk around the garden to photograph plants that had caught my eye during an afternoon of planting. (Like most gardeners do, I walk round and round with a perennial pot in hand trying to figure out where it could go.)

Clematis on east fence...most blooming on my neighbours' side!

Clematis on east fence…most blooming on my neighbours’ side!

another east fence clematis

another east fence clematis

Siberian Iris

Siberian Iris

Smokey toured with me.

Smokey toured with me.

shade bed

shade bed

I so look forward to a satisfying weeding of that shade bed. It was too windy to weed this close to the bogsy wood today, especially since the alder right over the shade bed has died! It is a great snag for birds but I fear a big branch breaking off in wind so I stay out from under on days like today, with gusts of 26 mph!

ominous

ominous

I wonder why this one alder died. I did not pile soil deeply around its base or anything bad… I skittered back to safety away from the tree.

west border

west border (Hi, Mary’s red boat shed!)

a new rose by the west gate

a new rose by the west gate

another new rose

another new rose (and…horsetail)

The new roses are from Heirloom roses, and I am going to sort out their names later this year!

I do NOT remember planting these iris.  I think they are too big to be from the ones Kathleen Sayce gave to me and Ann....

I do NOT remember planting these iris. I think they are too big to be from the ones Kathleen Sayce gave to me and Ann….

view down west path to the bogsy wood edge

view down west path to the bogsy wood edge

In the front garden, some truly accidental colour matching pleased my eye.

Imagine this astrantia...

Imagine this astrantia…

when this clematis that is behind it gets big enough to show above the astrantia.

when this clematis that is behind it gets big enough to show above the astrantia.

And the Allium bulgaricum also matches!

And the Allium bulgaricum also matches!

In closing, Allan’s excellent garden in the dusk…

perfectly weeded

perfectly weeded

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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