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Posts Tagged ‘Stipa gigantea’

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

It would be far too dull to tell you anything much about Wednesday except that it rained, and  thought I’d do some photo deleting and then read a book. Eight hours later, I had deleted 10,819 photos from 2013 and 2014, bringing my total down from over 41,000. I take fifty photos, at least, on most workdays and on garden tour days have been known to take three or four hundred. A lot of them are to move blog narration along. They build up. Also I was providing photo content for Facebook pages and the photos that were promoting other people’s businesses and events really add up after a year.  This year, my goal is to delete as I go.

Thursday, 26 February 2015

We should have gone to work even though rain seemed to be threatening.  The rain never arrived.  However, I had gotten three interlibrary loans at once and was desperate to read them.  Allan occasionally reassured me, as he contentedly went back and forth to his workshop, that the weather was quite chilly and we most definitely would suffer at work.

The middle one is Work of Her Own by Susan Wittig Albert

The middle one is Work of Her Own by Susan Wittig Albert

Although I was wracked with guilt and often felt that I should be out at least weeding my own garden, I read Walking the Wrack Line and started Work of Her Own.  I’ve added some favourite bits of Walking the Wrack Line to my previous post about Barbara Hurd.

cat

Even though I had had to set aside The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay to read the un-renewable interlibrary loans, Houdini followed me into the Barbara Hurd book:

houdini

I would have finished Work of Her Own as well, had we not had a dinner date at…

The Cove Restaurant

…where we were greeted by Parking Lot Cat.

He ran up to meet us.

He ran up to meet us.

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

The Cove entry garden is getting its spring clean up.

The Cove entry garden is getting its spring clean up.

….with sister gardener Terran.  She and Shelly Hedges, former owner of the late lamented Pelicano Restaurant, have begun a thriving gardening business called Flowering Hedge Design.   Terran and I gardened together at each other’s jobs one summer many years ago.  She’s 28 years younger than me and I see her as being the prime gardener on the Peninsula for years to come, long after Allan and I have retired.

Terran and me at The Cove

Terran and me at The Cove

We had fish tacos and steamer clams and closed with a delicious apple cake made from owner Sondra’s mum’s own recipe.  Terran treated us in thanks for having passed some jobs along to Flowering Hedge.

apple

After telly time, I read Work of Her Own till after 2 AM, with the lovely sound of rain pounding on the roof, because the weather forecast for Friday was 100% in favour of rain.  (I’ll likely do a post later about Susan Wittig Albert’s two books about work and writing.)

Friday, 27 February 2015

After staying up so late, I was shocked to wake up to sunshine.  Work beckoned after all.  Feeling mentally flummoxed by having my reading day plan aborted, I decided that we’d work on the parking lot berms just east of downtown Long Beach.  When we ran an errand at the Port of Ilwaco, we got distracted by weeds and began the day there instead.

Port of Ilwaco

The planter at Peninsula Sanitation, where we checked to make sure our bill was paid.

The planter at Peninsula Sanitation, where we checked to make sure our bill was paid. (Allan’s photo)

I see weeds and tatty grasses in the river rock bed by the old Harbor Lights Motel!

I see shotweeds and tatty grasses in the river rock bed by the old Harbor Lights Motel!

before, along Howerton Way

before, looking west along Howerton Way

after

after

We had not seen how weedy this area was, when we did the area west of it in almost dusk last week.

Some tatty grass got cut and two old blue fescue got pulled.

Looking east: Some tatty grass got cut and two old blue fescue got pulled.

The underlying landscape fabric shows through here and there in these beds, which drives me crazy.

The underlying landscape fabric shows through here and there in these beds, which drives me crazy.

If I had done the river rockscape, I would have laid pea gravel down first to hide the fabric.  It shows through here and there on the edges and in the bed itself.  We bucketed a half bucket more rocks from the next bed to the west to cover more partially bare areas.  The bed to the west, that I thought we had weeded pretty well in the dusk, gave us another two buckets of weeds today.  Finally, we moved on to

Long Beach

where we got distracted by some tatty blue oat grass in the Veterans Field garden.

messy

messy

better

better

I pulled two even more pitiful blue oat grass totally out.  See, I am trying to make this bed red white and blue without being all jingoistic about it because I am not a nationalist.  So my red white and blue scheme is fairly subtle.

The new bed on the other side of the lawn is also supposed to be red white and blue, so I planted a semi-dwarf red Wiegela ‘Crimson Kisses’ that I’ve had in a pot every since the Garden Bloggers Fling last July.

the new bed

the new bed

white(ish) narcissi

white(ish) narcissi

Finally, we got to the three parking lot berms.  We’d lose too much damp heavy soil to weed areas like this now:

weeds

The pale grass is Quaking Oat Grass, which is kind of cute in bloom and can stay for now.

The pale grass is Quaking Oat Grass, which is kind of cute in bloom and can stay for now.

We focused on the pruning and the removal of the largest velvet grasses and dandelions and shotweeds.

some narcissi in quaking grass

some narcissi in quaking grass

north berm before, Allan's photo, with messy Stipa gigantea

north berm before, Allan’s photo, with messy Stipa gigantea

after....better (Allan's photo)

after….better (Allan’s photo)

Hmm, even though the stipa still look messy, at least their old upright flowering stalks have been cut off.

Allan's photo of our weather conditions

Allan’s photo of our weather conditions

The south end of the bed was a mess...

The south end of the bed was a mess…

with Himalayan blackberries...

with Himalayan blackberries…

...which Allan removed with the pick.

…which Allan removed with the pick.

Before this berm was done, it became a three ibuprofen day.

Before this berm was done, it became a three ibuprofen day.

For the past two years we have pretty much given up on the center berm.  It’s mostly gone to grass and we hit it with a weedeater now and again.  Today, Allan dug out some gorse starts and some of the larger dandelions.  I often have bigger dreams for this berm and always run out of time before I can implement any of them.

the boring center berm with beach pines

the boring center berm with beach pines, Allan’s photo

Miraculously, that spot just above which has rugosa roses gave a lot of its weeds up ever so easily, probably because the soil was softened by needles of a dead beach pine which has been cut down by the city crew.

As I did a spot of weeding over in Fifth Street Park, a torrential rain finally arrived.  All we did on the third berm was pull some old Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ blades.

We'll get back to it soon.

We’ll get back to it soon.  I know these aren’t really berms; that’s what the city crew and I have nicknamed them over the years.

If this had come earlier, I'd have spent the day weeding.

If this had come earlier, I’d have spent the day weeding.

admiring Culbertson Field garden on the way to dump our debris

before the weather changed: admiring Culbertson Field garden on our way to the berms

Depot Restaurant

I was glad we had made our dinner date with Kathleen for 5 o clock, even though it had seemed too early before the rain came.

depot

The Depot Restaurant in Seaview

Kathleen's Autumn Duck

Kathleen’s Autumn Duck

“Pan Seared Duck Breast on Yam Mashers with Candied Pecans topped with Caramelized Granny Smith Apples and Sweet Onions in a Maple Glaze”

my scrumptious bowl of udon noodles with prawns

my scrumptious bowl of udon noodles with prawns

Allan tucked into his parmesan chicken before I remembered that we wanted a photo.

Allan tucked into his parmesan chicken before I remembered that we wanted a photo.

Kathleen's apple cobbler

Kathleen’s apple cobbler

my chocolate Guinness cake on a bed of blackberry sauce

my chocolate Guinness cake on a bed of blackberry sauce

Although I have an aversion to black cherry and chocolate together, I found the combination with blackBERRY to be quite acceptable.

Allan's chocolate espresso pot de creme

Allan’s chocolate espresso pot de creme

We had a lovely time indeed with Kathleen, who was down for the weekend, and who came to our house afterwards for a good long living room chat and a cuppa Earl Gray tea, which she had thoughtfully provided as she knows it’s my favourite.

Tomorrow: working up north

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Sunday, 14 September 2014

After all the walking on yesterday’s cottage tour, my knee and calf were both playing up, so almost all I did was sit and blog about the tour. Garden Tour Nancy came over with a large piece of salmon which her hunter/gatherer spouse, Phil, had caught in his secret fishing place. (I cannot tell.)

Feast your eyes on that, caught six hours earlier.

Feast your eyes on that, caught six hours earlier.

At least I had some flowers to offer in return.

At least I had some flowers to offer in return.

Fortunately for this blog entry, Allan rowed around Black Lake for awhile and took some photos.

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A fisherman (a 'Superfisherman') arrived and told of the trout he had caught, eagles that watch the lake from the surrounding trees and confirmed that I had seen otters as he'd seen them swimming in the weeds north of the dock.

Allan writes: A fisherman (a ‘Superfisherman’) arrived and told of the trout he had caught, eagles that watch the lake from the surrounding trees and confirmed that I had seen otters as he’d seen them swimming in the weeds north of the dock.

Ready to row the sailboat hull from the Yacht Club.

Ready to row the sailboat hull from the Yacht Club.

a couple taking wildlife pics

a couple taking wildlife pics

two kayakers who had launched from a dock by the school

two kayakers who had launched from a dock by the school

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The dock by the highway turn off was a gull hangout.

The dock by the highway turn off was a gull hangout.

A lot of feathers gathered downwind.

A lot of feathers gathered downwind.

The kayakers meanwhile had pulled out and a couple of kids were swimming by another dock.

The kayakers meanwhile had pulled out and a couple of kids were swimming by another dock.

Meanwhile I had found out with our wrapped up car GPS that I can row about 3 mph, top out at 4 .3 mph, and can't row and take pictures at the same time. The other photographer on the lake had a paddler too as her equipment was not a modest pocket camera.

Meanwhile I had found out with our wrapped up car GPS that I can row about 3 mph, top out at 4 .3 mph, and can’t row and take pictures at the same time. The other photographer on the lake had a paddler too as her equipment was not a modest pocket camera.

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I loaded up the boat, strimmed the grass where it had been, and loaded it on the vertical cart .

I loaded up the boat, strimmed the grass where it had been, and loaded it on the vertical cart at home.

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home for repairs; the purpose of the vertical cart is to move the boat through narrow garden paths.

home for maintenance; the purpose of the vertical cart is to move the boat through narrow garden paths. (Parked temporarily on Nora’s lawn)

We postponed eating the salmon for one day, as I had it strongly in mind to have a fire (with sausages) that night while the weather was still hot and not windy. Warm, still evenings are rare here (or have been in past summers; that may have permanently changed). If we could acquire a fire ring grill top, we could cook salmon and other delicacies outdoors but for now we are limited to food that can be toasted on a campfire fork (sausages and buns, and marshmallows for Allan).

starting the fire

starting the fire

Allan managed to start the fire with no paper at all; I usually use wads and wads of newspaper before I can get one going.

Allan's photo:  "NO paper, NO starters, just cedar and a lighter"

Allan’s photo: “NO paper, NO starters, just cedar and a lighter” (and alder wood)

garden in evening light

garden in evening light

Smokey was happy to join us near the fire.

Smokey was happy to join us near the fire.

Stipa gigantea, my favourite grass.

Stipa gigantea, my favourite grass (backed with river of Geranium ‘Rozanne’).

Tomorrow, I would have to do extensive watering as the garden had become distressed in the heat.

Persicaria 'Firetail' lying almost flat

Persicaria ‘Firetail’ lying almost flat

honeysuckle looking sad

honeysuckle looking sad

The fire burned bright and clean with no smoke.

The fire burned bright and clean with no smoke.

We wished that Kathleen had not had to go back to the big city, as last week when she came for a campfire, we had gotten rained out. This particular fire was the most perfect one of the summer.

the perfect fire

the perfect fire

and the experience we had hoped to share with Kathleen of watching the coals burn out

and the experience we had hoped to share with Kathleen of watching the coals burn out

Monday, 15 September 2014

We have become slackers, me more than Allan as he still goes out to do the necessary Ilwaco watering on a weekend. Having spent a day at the cottage tour, I felt a strong need for two days at home so declared Monday a day off. That will make this another TWO day work week for me as I am leaving Thursday, fate willing, for a trip to the Sylvia Beach Hotel.

The day began shockingly hot again. I was thrilled when it soon cooled down and I could see fog in the distance.

the delicious sight of fog at the east end of Lake Street

the delicious sight of fog at the east end of Lake Street

a pause to admire Azara microphylla variegata by the front porch

a pause to admire Azara microphylla variegata by the front porch

It was a workday for our friend J9, who stopped by after work for a visit and to get some vegetables.

sent her home with some tomatoes and some Yukon gold potatoes...and a little piece of fresh salmon just right for her dinner.

sent her home with some tomatoes and some Yukon gold potatoes…and a little piece of fresh salmon just right for her dinner.

Allan went out to water Larry and Robert’s garden, our volunteer Post Office garden, and the Ilwaco planters, all of which are one-person jobs.

cosmos at the post office

cosmos at the post office

He marvelled:  "A planter with new soil and next to a field hit with Round Up still manages to get  a dandelion & a chickweed"

He marvelled: “A planter with new soil and next to a field hit with Round Up still manages to get a dandelion & a chickweed”

(The vacant lot downtown is treated with Round Up by its owner, which we think is a shame as it used to grow wild beach peas.)

This was the planter that was vandalized in later summer, then moved and replanted.

This was the planter that was vandalized in later summer, then moved and replanted.

the planter by Larry's Antique Gallery Too! with vigorous nasturtium

the planter by Larry’s Antique Gallery Too! with vigorous nasturtium

My big garden plan for the weekend had been to chop up some of the garden debris pile and put it into the compost bins. We have decided to no longer collect kitchen compost from a nearby café for several reasons, one being that the compost bins stink up the garden in hot weather, one being that the amount of time spent collecting and processing takes more work hours than the cost of a load of dairy manure, and another being that a neighbour had….RATS…and the cats brought in a rat the other day, an ominous sign. With four plastic bins of kitchen compost, three of which could be breached by a determined critter, we were perhaps asking for trouble.

The first day was too hot to do the garden debris project and the second day I was just too darn lazy.

After watering, Allan made a delicious salmon dinner with Phil’s salmon, and some of our Yukon Golds and tomatoes (and storebought everything else).

I try to eat a bit of sauerkraut every day as it is supposed to be healthy.

I try to eat a bit of sauerkraut every day as it is supposed to be healthy.

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Tuesday, 1 July 2014

my morning

I had to get up early! Before eight AM! My inner clock does not allow me to sleep early, so I had maybe six hours. Nancy arrived with a double iced mocha in hand for me, and I ate a tahini sandwich on the way as had no time for breakfast. The reason was to go to Astoria with Nancy, Stephen, and John to be on the Diggin’ in the Dirt radio show to help promote the July 19th Music in the Gardens tour. Stephen and John’s is one of the ten tour gardens.

KMUN radio is housed here.

KMUN radio is housed here.

detail

Stephen, Nancy, and John

Stephen, Nancy, and John

view from the KMUN waiting room

view from the KMUN waiting room

Pam from my favourite local collectors nursery, Back Alley Gardens, joined us for the show to promote her Seaside walking tour which will take place on July 27 (sadly for me, it starts at 8 AM). The organizer of the Astoria garden tour was there also; it’s July 12th and I am very sorry to miss it this year as we will be at the Bloggers Fling in Portland. I wish there was some way I could have a sneak peek at the gardens.

After the show, we all walked a few blocks to have coffee together at the Blue Scorcher Café.

on the way, we saw goats...

on the way, we saw goats…

a hillside pasture for city goats!

a hillside pasture for city goats!

and gnarled old rhodo trunks reminiscent of some of the very old rhodos in Stephen and John's bayside garden.

and gnarled old rhodo trunks reminiscent of some of the very old rhodos in Stephen and John’s bayside garden.

walking and looking

walking and looking

My left calf had felt absolutely seized up with pain when I woke briefly at three AM, yet by midmorning had recovered enough that I was able to walk up and down hills in Astoria with not much trouble.

We gazed upon this because Stephen and John are conifer men...one more than the other, I think perhaps.

We gazed upon this because Stephen and John are conifer men…one more than the other, I think perhaps.

wild cucumber vine

wild cucumber vine

at the Blue Scorcher

at the Blue Scorcher

Pam, John, Stephen, Nancy

Pam, John, Stephen, Nancy

Pam's delicious looking brunch (some sort of curry soup); I simply had a chocolate croissant.

Pam’s delicious looking brunch (some sort of curry soup); I simply had a chocolate croissant.

On the way back, we happened upon a George Schenkian public garden that I admire very much. Jessica Schlief’s garden that she made by piling soil on top of asphalt to make beds has been here for years.

roses inside an ornate fence

roses inside an ornate fence

Pam and John.  (Stephen and John buy cool plants from her nursery.)

Pam and John. (Stephen and John buy cool plants from her nursery.)

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fence1

inside

inside

poppy and lily

poppy and lily

roses

roses and, I think…feverfew perhaps

bee balm

bee balm

My favourite ornamental grass, Stipa gigantea

My favourite ornamental grass, Stipa gigantea

sunflowers

sunflowers

The potted yew was a hit.

The potted yew was a hit.

garden admiration

garden admiration

John and Stephen

John and Stephen

all grown in raised beds atop unbroken asphalt

all grown in raised beds atop unbroken asphalt

Alllum schubertii

Alllum schubertii

allium2

allium shadow

allium shadow

The day had gotten bright and very hot. Back at KMUN to get the vehicles, I admired a bumper sticker.

I SOO dislike beach driving except for litter clean up and surf rescue.

I SOOO dislike beach driving except for litter clean up and surf rescue.

As Nancy and I drove back to the Peninsula, she expressed a desire to peek at the very secret house that I had dreamed about on Saturday. So we did. I did not pine for it as much, mostly because I have realized I would have to have a deer fence there, and it has no fencing at all.

Meanwhile I was on the phone with Allan, who informed me that it was very, very hot, that he had been sweating while starting his work day by watering Larry and Robert’s garden, and that I might not want to work. I could feel it, but thought surely we could accomplish our project, which was to weed one of the Long Beach parking lot berms.

I took time to stop at Nancy’s to meet her new chickens, still housed in the living room till their feathers grow in.

chickhouse

very curious

very curious

a peek at Nancy's veg garden

a peek at Nancy’s veg garden

her purple peas

her purple peas

She's very pleased about these Liberty apples.

She’s very pleased about these Liberty apples.

alliums in the flower garden we made there

allium albopilosum in the flower garden we made there

Allium schubertii

Allium schubertii

Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue'

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’

After the brief garden stroll, I called Allan and said that it was indeed TOO TOO hot, and would he come and get me and we would go home and go back out to work in the evening. After dumping the weeds he had already collected, he came over and we all sat on Nancy and Phil’s porch and drank ice water for awhile…and just as Allan and I were about to depart, a faintly cool breeze wafted from the north and I thought that perhaps we could go back to work after all.

Allan’s morning

This is how hot it was (so unusual for the beach…although seems to be ominously less unusual lately):

He saw this man while driving through Long Beach.

He saw this man while driving through Long Beach.

92 F!!

92 F!!

another fellow lounging in the shade by one of our planters.

another fellow lounging in the shade by one of our planters.

a before photo of the weedy parking lot berm

a before photo of the weedy parking lot (not really a) berm

He began by pruning back the overhanging roses

He began by pruning back the overhanging roses

then tackled the horrible mess in this garden for which we had had not time yet this year.

then tackled the horrible mess in this garden for which we had had not time yet this year.

Our afternoon

After we decided to get back to work despite the heat, we paused at Fifth Street park for a restroom stop and I checked the nearby planters; amazingly, there were still damp enough to not have to be watered yet.

The city crew was mowing, surely glad the temperature had dropped a bit.

The city crew was mowing, surely glad the temperature had dropped a bit.

park

I joined Allan in the berm weeding.

Yikes!

Yikes!

I had accidentally packed the wrong homi, the one that is too straight and springy.

I had accidentally packed the wrong homi, the one that is too straight and springy.

I tried the double tool but it did not have enough oomph.

I tried the double tool but it did not have enough oomph.

I borrowed Allan's ho mi that had enough oomph.  (Ho Mi, Korean Hand Plow, Zen Weeder, E-Z digger)

I borrowed Allan’s ho mi that had enough oomph. (Ho Mi, Korean Hand Plow, Zen Weeder, E-Z digger)

weeds!

weeds!

awful

awful

a nightmare indeed

a nightmare indeed

We had been hinting around that maybe a city parks intern could do this area…and finally it had gotten so bad I could not bear to leave it alone.

certainly an improvement!

certainly an improvement!

The main problem is the soil is tight and difficult, so lots of weed roots were left behind.

a battered looking weeding job

a battered looking weeding job

not great at close inspection

not great at close inspection

with some pockets of weeds that were so daunting we left them there for now

with some pockets of weeds that were so daunting we left them there for now

It is...better.

It is…better.

There are some good plants in this garden that may distract people from the rough rootiness at ground level.

Rosa glauca and Stipa gigantea

Rosa glauca and Stipa gigantea

Rosa glauca and Stipa gigantea

Rosa glauca and Stipa gigantea

Crocosmia 'Lucifer'

Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’

assorted shrubs

assorted shrubs

Echinops (Blue Globe Thistle)

Echinops (Blue Globe Thistle)

Even the horrible phormium

Even the horrible phormium

had redeemed itself by putting out a flower.

had redeemed itself by putting out a flower.

Across the parking lot, a garden at the Oceanic RV Park was brimming with potted astilbes.

a very nice little garden on the north wall

a very nice little garden on the north wall

Home, so tired from such a tedious job and the early morning, I got back to garden tour blogging. I glimpsed from my window that the sky promised a good sunset and then got so absorbed in writing that I forgot to look again. Judy four doors down probably won’t mind that I show you the sunset photos that she posted on Facebook.

sunset on Lake Street

sunset

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Garden tour season inspires me to do a lot of slacking on actual work.  It will show up when I total the end of month profits!

We began the day at the Red Barn and Diane’s garden.  Diane and Larry’s dog Misty, a good friend of mine, could not wait to see us and came across the field to the barn.

Misty

Misty

a horse at the Red Barn

a horse at the Red Barn

We fertilized the containers by Diane’s porch…

porch planters

porch planters

I am happy with them and also with the garden by the entry drive.

with Stipa gigantea

with Stipa gigantea

I am not very happy with the street-side garden, especially when I compare it to Gene’s.  Larry has been doing a good job of watering.  It is mulched by the owners with cranberry mulch.  I feel it needs some dairy manure.  With a great big free pile of horse manure next door at the barn, that might feel like an excessive purchase, but I know from experience that horse manure brings in many weeds and therefore increases labour.

needs help!

needs help!

I’ll add more lavenders and santolina this fall….

Next, we skived off work and went to two of the gardens that would be on the edible tour in order to take enticing pre-tour photos for the Facebook page.

First we stopped at Kim and Andrea Patten’s garden on the bay.  Kim is the head of the Cranberry Research Station and Andrea has the Wholesome Hearth baked goods booth at the Columbia Pacific Farmers Market (in Long Beach on Fridays, 4-7 PM).

Patten garden

Patten garden

deer fenced

deer fenced Patten veg garden

shallots hanging on the porch

shallots hanging on the Patten porch

an amazing apple orchard

an amazing apple orchard at Patten garden

apples

apples, Patten garden

The owners were not there so I did not feel I should poke my nose around to the more private bay side of the garden.

Next we went way north on Sandridge almost to Oysterville to get some pre-tour photos at “Lavender And”, a small commercial lavender farm.  Again, the owner was not to be found so we did not go into the area around the home.

geometric lavender

geometric lavender at Lavender And

dramatic reflection

dramatic reflection

And then, a run of work working from north to south….

Marilyn's garden

Marilyn’s garden

Cosmos 'Cranberry Double Click'

Cosmos ‘Cranberry Double Click’

Knautia macedonica, Phygelius, Salvia viridis

Knautia macedonica, Phygelius, Salvia viridis at Marilyn’s

Cosmos 'Happy Ring' at Marilyn's

Cosmos ‘Happy Ring’ at Marilyn’s

Wiegardt Studio Gallery garden

Wiegardt Studio Gallery garden

lily at Wiegardt Gallery

lily at Wiegardt Gallery

Oman Builders Supply garden in Ocean Park

Oman Builders Supply garden in Ocean Park

We skipped Klipsan Beach Cottages for later in the week and headed all the way down to Long Beach to water the planters.  I had barely emerged from our car when I saw three boys picking dahlias from one of the planters.  “Hey! No picking!!” came my usual cry.  They shuffled a bit and one said “My mom’s getting married and we want to take her some flowers.”  That’s a touching story indeed.  I said, “Look, there are three of you, right?  Now imagine if every group of three people in town picked themselves a bouquet…How many flowers would be left?”  They shuffled some more.  I said “Congratulations to your mom, and you can give her what you have already picked, but don’t pick any more.”  One boy opened a plastic bag to put the flowers in…and there was half a bag more of flowers in there.  “So where did you get those?” I asked.  “Oh, not from the planters, from our own garden!” was the hasty reply.  Odd how the flowers looked exactly like the ones I had in planters further down the street.  I just sighed and moved on, as did they.

off to mom's wedding?

off to mom’s wedding? with a bag of flowers

Is there any point in even asking people to stop picking?  Perhaps it will sink in and save someone else’s flowers in the future.  Perhaps not.

the daily painted sage photo

the daily painted sage photo

Next: garden touring with the garden club: a Music in the Gardens tour reprise…

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I had a new outlook on life after deciding to quit a very big job. Perhaps now we could finally begin to catch up on work and maybe even get around to a couple of valued private garden clients that we have had to completely neglect. (I prefer doing public gardens, but we tend to become friends with our clients over time and then we like doing their private gardens as well.)

Mike’s garden

We began with Mike the Ilwaco mayor’s garden. I must remember to acquire a nice plant to fill this hole left by pulling out some tatty rose campions. I am thinking a Brunnera ‘Looking Glass’ if Basket Case Greenhouse still has any.

just the spot for a Brunnera

just the spot for a Brunnera

entry

entry

Allan painstakingly weeded the gravel path while I weeded the beds and thinned out more rose campions, too many feverfew, and spent foxgloves.

front path, nicely weeded

front path, nicely weeded

Eryngium 'Jade Frost' and feverfew

Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’ and feverfew

I still want to know for sure what this plant is:

I almost know its name but can't remember.

I almost know its name but can’t remember.

Cheri’s garden

Kitty corner from Mike’s is longtime client Cheri’s garden.

Mike's garden from Cheri's

Mike’s garden from Cheri’s

While we were weeding her garden, a cement truck showed up to make two pads, one for a new compost area and one for the new outdoor haven for the cats.

future cat paradise

future cat paradise

They will be able to enter from inside the house (I think, although I can’t quite picture how).

In the front garden, we found another wind and rain flop:

splayed cranesbill geranium

splayed cranesbill geranium

side garden with cement truck backdrop

side garden with cement truck backdrop

We’ll have to wait till next time to do the garden next to the cat room!

Anchorage Cottages

Next we went up through Long Beach to the Anchorage Cottages where we saw many bees on the Ceanothus, just like last week. I managed to prune one more branch to make the number one show even better. The bees buzzed me but not with apparent anger.

Ceanothus (California lilac)

Ceanothus (California lilac)

bee feast

bee feast

Allium albopilosum in office planter

Allium albopilosum in office planter

Allium

On a shady north wall we found one of the largest Pacific tree frogs I’ve ever seen.

sizeable Pacific tree frog

sizeable Pacific tree frog

lily

lily

The windowboxes are looking great…

windowbox at south end

windowbox at south end

The ones on the north end of the parking lot looked better after we pruned down the Viburnum in front of them.

It's a constant task to keep these at the right height and still let them bloom in winter.

It’s a constant task to keep the Viburnum at the right height and still let them bloom in winter.

We also saw a very large spider in the parking lot and Allan thinks it might light up when the brakes are engaged.

!!

Gene’s garden

We did a quick check on Gene’s in south Long Beach. It looks fine although has room for…more plants!

The porch is perfection.

The porch is perfection.

Eryngium and Lavender

Eryngium and Lavender

more plants, please!

more plants, please!

It’s the “first year they sleep, second year they creep, third year they leap” perennial syndrome.

Long Beach

Back to Long Beach, we watered and fertilized all the planters on the main street (and also touched up the street tree gardens).

a miniature rose planted by one of the former volunteers

a miniature rose planted by one of the former volunteers

by the credit union

by the credit union

by Home at the Beach (Agyranthemum 'Butterfly')

by Home at the Beach (Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’)

Fifth Street Park

Fifth Street Park

planter by the Cottage Bakery

planter by the Cottage Bakery

We twist our quick connect device into the, er, water place in each planter.

There are two exceedingly boring planters that I keep thinking of redoing; one has just vinca and Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’, and the other has azaleas that bloom in the spring, two blue star Junipers, and a lot of very invasive mint mixed with a cranesbill geranium.

boring and more boring

boring and more boring

In some of the planters, I remembered to cut back the Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ in June, and it has now recovered into a tidy, compact and smaller flowering shape. The ones I forgot are big, splayed, and floppy.

pruned and not pruned...ooops

pruned and not pruned…ooops

I checked the planters by the Veterans Field Stage and had a gander at the Columbia Pacific Farmers Market which takes place there on Fridays from 4-7 PM. (Gene’s late wife Peggy was one of the prime movers on getting this market going.)

farmers market

farmers market

There, I bought myself five Heirloom tomato plants and was pleased to talk with the seller, Kim, who had had one of my favourite gardens on the 2010 Peninsula garden tour.  [edited later to add:  She and her spouse, Paul, have a flower farm at Deer Island, Oregon called River Rock Farm.]

tomatoes

tomatoes

Her plant selection including fascinating varieties and each plant came with a packet of fertilizer for potting on.

Back to the planter work: I am enjoying the new Calibrachoa ‘Lemon Slice’, very refreshing in name and appearance.

Callie 'Lemon Slice'

Callie ‘Lemon Slice’

One the way to dump our debris at city works, I stopped to photograph this tidy edible garden and left them a note asking if they would be on this year’s Edible tour on August 11th. Have not yet got an email from them, but I know the organizer of that tour is looking for a couple more small edible gardens to include.

charming

charming

Our last task in Long Beach was to cosmetically de-horsetail the welcome sign.

horsetail free (or so it appears)

horsetail free (or so it appears)

Ilwaco boatyard and planters

We closed the day with the rather dreaded bucket watering of the Ilwaco planters, a task for which Allan does the heavy lifting. I pulled a bit horsetail out of the boatyard garden while checking to make sure that it did not need watering yet (not, thank goodness). The evening light at 7:30 PM flatters the garden. The following photos are sort of like the big bunch of fireworks all at once that ends any good fireworks display.

Flanders Field poppies

Flanders Field poppies

Mother of Pearl poppy

Mother of Pearl poppy

daisy

daisy

Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue', colour NOT boosted

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’, colour NOT boosted

Allium albopilosum

Allium albopilosum

I think a Shirley poppy

I think a Shirley poppy

Allium albopilosum; I am so pleased there has been no finger blight on these!

Allium albopilosum; I am so pleased there has been no finger blight on these!

more poppies

more poppies

Stipa gigantea

Stipa gigantea

Eryngium 'Sapphire Blue'

Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’

more poppies and Stipa gigantea

more poppies and Stipa gigantea

I walked through town and checked the condition, deadleafing, and deadheading of each planter and did some weeding under the ten street trees. At the corner of 1st and Eagle, Ethel has turned her holly hedge into a deer fence around her private garden.

It should work!

It should work! Although deer will crawl to get in…seriously, they will.

I long to remove the irritating-to-weed bricks from around the trees, fill in with soil, and just keep the plants clipped in to the square area.

my nemesis

my nemesis

It would save the city money in the long run as these are a bugger to weed, so I am going to suggest it to Mike the mayor.

I think a plant got swiped out of this planter!

I think a plant got swiped out of this planter! We have to keep filling in…

Finally, Allan waters the library planters, and then there is only one more to go back down at the Port at Peninsula Sanitation’s office.

at the Ilwaco library

at the Ilwaco library

Note how he swiveled the planters so that the two thymes match in position.

At last, home at 9 with time to have a quick look at the garden.

past the alstroemeria by the garage

past the alstroemeria by the garage

back yard

back yard

Leycesteria 'Golden Lanterns'

Leycesteria ‘Golden Lanterns’

a new to me Allium

a new to me Allium in the front garden

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I suspect that yesterday will have been the longest day of our work year, but maybe not, as garden tour month approaches and three of the gardens we have a hand in will be on the tour (on July 20th).

We had much to do yesterday, and our main goal was to get many jobs done and get to Andersen’s RV Park by five to do a lot more weeding before the Sisters on the Fly group starts to arrive this weekend.

Larry and Robert’s garden

We began just down the street at Larry and Robert’s garden with the continuation of changes to their back yard.  

before and after

before and after

We added an Azara microphylla (an excellent small tree with fragrant winter blooms) and some pea gravel and river rock and some edging from materials that were on the property.  I have in the past had an aversion to scalloped edging.  Now I cannot remember why, because I think it looks just grand here.  Now we need some more river rock for against the house and some sort of plant to fill in the narrow border there that is somewhat resistant to three small dogs (nothing too delicate).

Ilwaco intermission

We then planted an Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ in our volunteer garden at the Ilwaco Post Office.

Ilwaco Post Office

Ilwaco Post Office

As we headed out of Ilwaco, the man who sells firewood on 2nd SW waved us down and gave us two hollow rounds of wood that could be used as planters, he said in appreciation of our volunteer work in town.  I told him we do get paid to care for the planters and the boatyard (although the latter did start out as a volunteer project years ago) and that the post office is our only volunteer garden now.  He still insisted we should have the planters.  (He has them for sale sometimes over at 2nd SW and Eagle.)

a garden gift

a garden gift

Might I add, those things are very heavy!

Diane’s garden

Next, we stopped at Diane’s garden and The Red Barn Arena (next door to each other): Allan fertilized the whiskey barrel planters at the barn and Diane’s containers while I deadheaded and weeded along the road.

at Diane's

at Diane’s

That roadside garden clearly needs more plants.  I’ll add some of the inexpensive Dianthus from the Basket Case next time we go there.

Anchorage Cottages

After Diane’s, we went to The Anchorage Cottages where we were requested to prune a branch off of the Ceanothus so that the parking sign for cottage one would show.  The shrub was thick with bees.

Ceanothus

Ceanothus (California Lilac)

Ceanothus (California Lilac)

Even though the bees were gentle, they got pretty agitated when I tried to lop a large branch, so I settled for quickly cutting one small piece and then scampering well back while they swarmed toward me…then…whew!!…resettled on the flowers.

The number one just barely showing.

The number one just barely showing.

Plant emergency of the morning:  thrips on a lily!  Doused it with a cup of mild dish soap well diluted with water.  Fingers crossed.

cured, I hope

cured, I hope

I was reminded of this New Yorker cartoon, long a favourite of mine.

 

george-booth-aphids-on-the-heliotrope-new-yorker-cartoon

Anchorage center courtyard

Anchorage center courtyard

New Dawn rose

New Dawn rose

We did not spend as long there as I would have liked because our mission remained to get to Andersen’s by five.  Our next stop was The Basket Case to pick up some plants for Andersen’s garden shed border which I felt had looked a little bare after the previous evening’s weeding there.  I also got two Lobelia tupa for Sheila as she and Harold are coming to visit us soon!

at the Basket Case, what a deal!

at the Basket Case, what a deal!

Wiegardt Studio Gallery

Next we went all the way up to Nahcotta/Ocean Park to the Wiegardt Gallery where again we went round the garden in haste but I hope effectively.

at Wiegardt Gallery with manager Christl

at Wiegardt Gallery with manager Christl

Allium schubertii

Allium schubertii and albopilosum

Wiegardt

Alliums white and purple

Alliums white and purple

Allium albopilosum and Allium moly 'Jeannine'

Allium albopilosum and Allium moly ‘Jeannine’

front walkway

front walkway

west side of gallery

west side of gallery

It occurs to me that next time we are there, I will take you inside!  Eric Wiegardt is a renowned artist and the gallery is beautiful.

Ocean Park intermission

We were doing well as it was only three o clock, so we had time to stop at Jack’s Country Store for what we call “Jack’s snacks”.   Of such tiny luxuries are happy moments made.

Bliss:  The Jack's Snacks Cooler and my potato salad in the car

Bliss: The Jack’s Snacks deli cooler and my potato salad in the car

I think this is the first time since the beginning of May that we have had time, when at the north end, to stop for a treat.

Next up:  the small entry garden at Oman Builders Supply.  But first, we did a U Turn to get a better look at a garden near Jack’s that is looking fine.  Garden tour next year?

an Ocean Park garden

an Ocean Park garden

driftwood and toadflax

driftwood and toadflax

lupines

lupines and foxgloves

a work in progress

a work in progress

Doing another U turn to get back to OBS, we saw that the poppy garden behind Jack’s is still there.  Jack himself started it, or his wife perhaps, and it is being carried on.

east wall of Jack's

east wall of Jack’s

Oman Builders Supply

After those distractions we got to Oman Builders Supply garden.

OBS garden

OBS garden

Mainly I wanted to make sure that the Eryngiums ‘Jade Frost’ and Lobelia tupa that we had planted last week had no transplant shock.  They were fine.  We could have spent quite awhile deadheading the Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ but more work called to us to keep moving.

The remaining deadheads can wait till next week.

The remaining deadheads can wait till next week.

hebe flowering at OBS

hebe flowering at OBS

Klipsan Beach Cottages

We pulled into our parking area at Klipsan Beach Cottages at a quarter to four.  Still on track for our day’s plan.  I knew the garden would be in good shape and that we could get it done in an hour.

Klipsan Beach Cottages

Klipsan Beach Cottages fenced garden

Allium albopilosum (Star of Persia)

Allium albopilosum (Star of Persia)

Allium schubertii

Allium schubertii

Rose 'Jude the Obscure'

Rose ‘Jude the Obscure’

The names of some of the roses are lost to us!

The names of some of the roses are lost to us!

rose

Last year this one did not open well but this year it looks fine.

Last year this one did not open well but this year it looks fine.

Last year Mary brought back some choice shrubs, and the one below is still in a pot because we have not found the perfect spot for it.  I think it is some kind of callistemon but if I am wrong, perhaps someone will enlighten me.

a recent acquisition

a recent acquisition

One of the two cats put on a charming show for me in the garden.

Sarah, who did get a belly rub

Sarah, who did get a belly rub

The foxgloves are restricting the view of one of the entry signs.

No one can bear to cut them down.

No one can bear to cut them down.

We would have left, as I had planned, by 4:45, but owner/manager Mary and I got into a conversation about Nora’s funeral, and life, and death, and afterlife or not, and walked up to the cottages and back, and so Allan and I did not leave till a little after five.

Corokia cotoneaster

Corokia cotoneaster in late afternoon light

Andersen’s RV Park

At last, we got to Andersen’s at five fifteen.  While Allan planted the new perennials in the garden shed garden, I weaseled out of my least favourite garden task (planting) to discuss with the staff what to do with one of those free planters we had been given in Ilwaco earlier in the day.  Jan came up with a good spot for it, and we waited for Al to return from walking his dog in order to suggest it, because it involved an area for which he had been seeking a design solution.

Al and Chewie return from the beach

Al and Chewie return from the beach

He liked the idea but since his shift was over, another staffer and Allan ended up doing it.   I hope Al was not disappointed the next morning to find it done, because he does like to have a project.  Jan’s idea was so good that it couldn’t wait till morning!

the round hollow wood

the round hollow wood

I snagged three gazania out of planters on the east side of the house where they closed up in the afternoon for lack of sun.

Till eight thirty, Allan and I weeded like mad in the beds behind the office, where the pernicious quack grass had returned; I walked the other beds and planters removing dead bulb foliage.  The results were satisfactory and now, on Monday, all we have to do is a light weeding from one end of the gardens to the other and all will be perfect…at the same time!  This is rare, because as you can probably tell, we have too many jobs to reach that state of glory very often on our larger garden jobs.

behind the office

behind the office

Having time to deadleaf as well as deadhead really makes a garden look perfect.

Buddliea 'Black Night' before...

Buddliea ‘Black Night’ before…

and after picking off yellowed leaves

and after picking off yellowed leaves

If an RVer who is also a gardener camps here, s/he must be pretty impressed with the beauty of the gardens at this time of year in evening light.  Tired though we were, we lingered to take some pictures in the late evening.

poppies and Payson Hall

poppies and Payson Hall

Baptisia (false indigo)

Baptisia (false indigo)

Stipa gigantea, my favourite ornamental grass

Stipa gigantea, my favourite ornamental grass

Stipa and Payson Hall

Stipa and Payson Hall

gold spangles

gold spangles

sunset light

sunset light

On the way out, we swung by the garden shed so I could see the new plants in.  It does look more filled out with the addition of a couple of Gaura ‘So White’, a Cistus, a Phygelius ‘African Queen’ and…something else…I forget what!

garden shed garden

garden shed garden

Al had, earlier in the day, made the gravel path at the very far end look spiffing but it does not show in this photo.

An emergency

Finally we could go home!  As we drove south through Long Beach, I checked my messages on Facebook to get an update from my gardening neighbour (four doors down), Judy.  As I read her fairly reassuring message about her visit to the cardiologist, another message popped up from a client at a commercial establishment.  There were caterpillars all over a shrub, having stripped the leaves, and looking horribly unsightly right next to a venue for an event on Saturday.  Could we come tomorrow (Saturday morning) and cut it down?  I won’t name the business because no one wants to think about horrid caterpillars.  It was on our way home, and Saturday morning was fully booked with events (Saturday market, visiting friends, cash mob) so we had to make an emergency detour with loppers and a chainsaw and cut the shrub (a Leycesteria formosa) to the ground at dusk-thirty.  I felt terrible because a hummingbird was feeding on the flowers; every leaf was gone, but the flowers remained.  One on the other side of the building (away from the next day’s event) was still leafed out, although a bit chewed, and I think the hummer could find it.

In my own garden I would have left the shrub alone to leaf out again, but at a business such ugliness cannot stand, especially if caterpillars are dropping onto customers!

We could not haul the debris.  Nay, would not.  No caterpillars allowed in our work trailer or at the site where we dump.  Fortunately there was a place we could stash the branches till the infestation is gone.

By then it was far too late to blog about such a long day so I made a placeholder entry via my iPhone on the way home…where we collapsed in front of the telly and had a comforting dinner quickly whipped up by Allan and watched Master Chef.  Just before that, as I did the evening spreadsheet on my computer, Allan came in to my office to show me this riding on his shirt.  If anyone knows caterpillars,  perhaps they can tell me what this horrid creature will become.  Nothing nice, I bet.  I shudder to think how many hitched a ride on our clothes.

a garden pest

a garden pest

I am hoping for no more days this long unless they are that long…in my own garden.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Due to my rashly planned mini-trip this week, I have so much to do that I could not take the day off today.  We did begin with a worthwhile errand:  acquiring yet another free composter, this time from Cheri’s garden.  It may have to be roped back together, but it will work:

The price is right!

The price is right!

The compost pile was not broken down enough to put it on the garden, so we set it to one side.  Two snazzy new rotating composters will be installed here side by side.

This not quite rotted pile can be reinstalled in one of the new composters.

This not quite rotted pile can be reinstalled in one of the new composters.

Cheri's lovely Dutch iris

Cheri’s lovely Dutch iris

I had a bit of anxiety that some of the special plants at The Basket Case Greenhouse would sell out while I am away on my three day trip, so we detoured from our Ilwaco gardening plans to go up and snag some more Sanguisorbas and Agastaches.  Fred and I discussed what we could put in the Veterans Field garden for the red colour needed for the dedication ceremony on May 5th.  He really wants me to plant red geraniums but I have annoyingly strong opinions that certain plants (geraniums and petunias!) belong in containers rather than in the ground so I am hoping to find something else that is red and blooming.  But if not…I know where to buy some very fine dark red geraniums.

at the Basket Case

at the Basket Case

Later for the (first ever for me because I am not a nationalist) red white and blue theme I will have more interesting plants:  Salvia patens, Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’, Cosmos ‘Purity’, Salvia ‘Lipstick’ (or is it Hot Lips? anyway, a nicely shaped red one), Barberry ‘Crimson Pygmy’, Sapphire blue oat grass and Lobelia tupa.

A friend last year was searching hard for the Aquilegia called ‘Clementine’. and this year The Basket Case has it.

Aquilegia 'Clementine'

Aquilegia ‘Clementine’, a double white

Speaking of red, white and blue, when we stopped back at home I noticed that my Pulsatilla ‘Red Clock’ is in bloom.

Pulsatilla 'Red Clock'

Pulsatilla ‘Red Clock’

The very cool contorted English Hawthorn that I got at Joy Creek two years ago seems to be doing well after struggling for a couple of years.  (Picture Allan and I having an argy bargy about how to best face it up* while planting the large root ball and then hearing an ominous crack in the lower trunk.)

a happy Hawthorne

a happy Hawthorne (between the red tulips)

How very much I wanted to stay home and weed my own garden...but not today...

How very much I wanted to stay home and weed my own garden…but not today…

We began our post-shopping workday at the topmost garden on Discovery Heights, where we found my favourite ornamental grasses, Stipa gigantea, looking surprisingly tatty.

not very nice

not very nice

Allan combed them out while I weeded.  I found a mysterious sight: another grass sitting sideways out of the ground.  And not a small grass.  What happened here, I wonder?

??!!??

??!!??

You can see that the garden is full of Montbretia.  The rampant orange one came in on the soil that was used (not by us) to build the garden bed.  The owners actually like the montbretia so I just try to keep it from swamping everything and making a monoculture out of the garden.

Pesky montbretia would love to take over.

Pesky montbretia would love to take over.

The stipa looked much better after Allan had attended to them.  I wonder if they will flower?

improved

improved

top garden: weeded, combed, six santolinas added

top garden: weeded, combed, six santolinas added

On the way down the hill, we stopped to photograph a stunning display of native plants below a curve in the road.  I believe this might mean this is a moist spot.  (My botanist friend Kathleen Sayce will tell me what it is and I will add the name.)

a curving sweep of white flowers

a curving sweep of white flowers:  Petasites, sweet coltsfoot (thanks, Kathleen!); ‘

Kathleen says:  “Sweet coltsfoot, loves wet seeps, and flowers relatively early, tho’ it’s late this year.”

We skipped the T Junction garden (three quarters of the way up the hill) and went to the middle garden by the gate.  I walked down partway, pruning some sword ferns by a couple of the light bollards, and Allan deadheaded middle garden narcissi.  A scrim of maddening horsetail is appearing but the narcissi should provide a distraction and let us postpone a thorough weeding for another week.

white narcissi and white cresting waves in the distance

white narcissi and white cresting waves in the distance

That bit of ocean is at Beard’s Hollow where we cleaned the beach yesterday.

I had a revelation that I could use Ceanothus as a green backdrop in Marilyn’s deer-chomped garden because the deer do not eat it here.

Ceanothus (California lilac) backdrop

Ceanothus (California lilac) backdrop

I credit my friend Terran with the idea to plant all white Narcissi.  The narcissi “All White” mix from Van Engelen has lasted so well in this middle garden although it has petered out a lot in the lower and T Junction gardens.

middle garden band of white

middle garden band of white

white mix aglow

white mix aglow

A Hellebore feotidus has reseeded itself below the rocks in middle garden.

Hellebore and child

Hellebore and child (to the right by the road is the child)

This hellebore has amazed me by coming through year after year in these harsh windy and not very shady conditions.

a toughie

a toughie

We also skipped lower garden because we needed to do some weeding and planting at the Ilwaco boatyard garden, especially one long section that I knew had lots of horsetail.

horsetail haven

horsetail haven

horsetail in sidewalk crack

horsetail in sidewalk crack

My guru Ann Lovejoy says you must cut rather than pull horsetail or you will make it worse:

“Chemical warfare only takes out this season’s stalks, while mowing is more effective and less environmentally damaging. That’s because the best way to get rid of horsetail is to cut, not pull.

Pulling horsetail actually stimulates new growth. Pull one stalk and three or four will take its place. Cut it at ground level and you will slowly deplete the roots.”  (Ann Lovejoy)

We don’t cut it but we do break it off pretty close to the ground.  Even in places where we have greatly improved the soil (like my own garden) it comes back but it does weaken in time.  We did a quick job today because a thorough job will need to be done before the day of the children’s parade (May 4th).

boatyard before...

boatyard before…

after

after

A lot of the green is from California poppy seedlings.

This Stipa gigantea at the boatyard is putting out flower stalks, as it should, unlike the battered ones up on Discovery Heights.

healthy Stipa gigantea

healthy Stipa gigantea

At the southern end of the garden, the horsetail had not sprouted back with such force, but many mushrooms had appeared.  I am no mycologist so I can’t ID them.

with blue oat grass

with blue oat grass

mushrooms

They do come in sometimes, but not always, on the Soil Energy mix….

boatyard

boatyard

I photographed some boats in the yard for the Discover Ilwaco Facebook page and we then moved on to the Marie Powell Gallery garden on Howerton.  (More boat photos from earlier years here.)

While weeding the Powell Gallery garden I pondered on how I think the plants in it are too tall.  I am hoping to convince the powers that be to remove that pampas grass with a large machine.

We did not get this one cut back in time!

We did not get this one cut back in time!

I prefer the shorter plant schemes in our newly redone garden beds on this street.

looking west with telephoto

looking west with telephoto

The pampas even hides Marie’s print making shop from street view.

too big!

too big!

I also pondered how much I dislike weeding among river rock.  I wish it were confined only to a faux stream bed!

It is a pain to weed among the round rocks...

It is a pain to weed among the round rocks…

but they are attractive as a stream bed.

but they are attractive as a stream bed.

The river rock does set the plants off nicely so I should stop whinging, I suppose.

By six forty five, I had tired of an increasingly cold evening wind.  We went home…just a block away! and I tried to plant 18 or so small Nicotiana langsdorfii in my own garden.  I hit the wall after only three.  Why did 51 degrees seem so very chilly?  Could it be that working on the blog seemed more amusing than being outdoors?

.

*Facing a plant up is when you put its best side to your most important view of said plant.

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First on our daily agenda: The check up on the progress at Olde Towne Coffee. It is surprising how much I miss it being open even though these days I would not even have time to go!

They're still moving in!

They’re still moving in!

And then….we finally got the tree pocket gardens and the planters on First Avenue in Ilwaco clipped and weeded.

Narcissi in the boatyard garden

Narcissi in the boatyard garden

I love the way this golden marjoram looks right now.

I love the way this golden marjoram looks right now.

As always, yellow to match the Portside Café

As always, yellow to match the Portside Café

And then….to Long Beach, but before we got back to the beach approach, other tasks beckoned, in particular, tidying up the parking lot berms one block to the east of the main street.

before and after (Stipa gigantea, my favourite ornamental grass)

before and after (Stipa gigantea, my favourite ornamental grass)

All we had time for was trimming the worst messes; weeds at ground level are dire but remain a task for another day.

more weeding

The temperature had dropped, a chill wind had come up, and we had to put our jackets on. Allan went out to get back to the beach approach weeding, but I needed to walk around town and deadhead spent and unpleasant looking narcissi from the planters and parks.

There was some evidence of finger blight (theft of flowers):

please don't pick the tulips!

please don’t pick the tulips!

more picking and a bulb pulled out

more picking and a bulb pulled out

I think people try to pull a flower, or break and take the stem, and the bulb comes out.

Excuses I have heard for finger blight:

“I have to pick a flower when I see a pretty girl that needs one.” (NOT referring to me!)

“I just had my wedding on the beach and had to pick a bouquet.” (This young woman had her arms full of every tulip in bloom from the beach approach garden on that day, back before the deer discovered those species tulips.)

The same woman, who was the daughter of a local (now out of business) restaurateur, also told me, “I’m making work for you because the city will hire you to plant more!”

“It’s just a few”, to which of course the answer is if everyone picked a few, there would be none for the rest of the passersby to enjoy.

Anyway….Aside from finger blight, I worrited over the rain spotted and pitiful appearance of the tulip foliage in the downtown planters.

ghastly leaves

ghastly leaves

They get terribly beat up by the weather, but when they start to bloom, the later tulips fill in the gap between narcissi and annuals and provide colour for the parade that is always the first Sunday in May.

so glorious in bloom

so glorious in bloom

tulips

tulips

tulips

tulips

I did have a brainstorm today though…I am going to make sure to follow through carefully on my half-baked method of planting the big tulips to the inside and species tulips to the outside of the planter array….so that I can yank ALL the big ones every year, because they are never as good the second year anyway (whereas the species tulips can multiply).

I like the new primrose in bloom that Allan brought back from Seattle’s Emerald City Gardens:

dark leaved primrose

dark leaved primrose

Along with the tulip foliage problem, I also pondered how some of the planters still have too much, perhaps, of the original plantings done back in the days of different volunteers doing each planter. I get tired of thinning the vigorous white Achillea in one of them; over the winter, it again took over the whole planter:

Yarrow

Yarrow

And the planter in front of one of the arcades still has shrubs, planted by a volunteer, that look exciting right now but are dull green blobs during the height of tourist season…and are intermingled with mint!

spring azalea planter

spring azalea planter

I’ve been redoing some of the older planters, but just cannot decide about the one above.

We recently mulched under all the trees and the pocket gardens look refreshed.

tree garden

tree garden

another tree garden

another tree garden

After checking on all the trees, planters, and parks, I joined Allan on the beach approach garden, where he had tackled the horrible section infested with rush. We only managed to get that one section done, and so we do not feel much closer to the arch than we did yesterday…

so near yet so far.

where we were at the end of yesterday…

and how far we got today

and how far we got today (pitiful!!!)

I did practice saying “no” to something when the parks manager asked us today if when we get the whole thing weeded, would we like to mulch it…or something like that…and I said while I would love to have it mulched, the city crew would have to do it because we still have four private gardens we have not even been to yet this year and we just do not have time…

The only thing that got me through that last hour or two of weeding on the beach approach was a special treat from the Cottage Bakery. They were out of tiger paws, but the nice man made us custom tiger paws out of Persians with chocolate and maple frosting! “We like to take care of our locals,” he said.

custom made fuel for hard, cold work

custom made fuel for hard, cold work

I have almost forgotten to whine about how cold it was on the approach. Cold, windy, miserably chilly….just the sort of weather I try to avoid out there, and I never would have made it through a whole day; would have gone somewhere less windy instead.

On the way home, we trimmed up most of the planters on Sid Snyder Drive, the other beach approach, and oh my, was it cold…But crocosmia and grasses desperately needed to be cut back in all those planters, also once done by volunteers and still with an odd assortment of plants. I was so glad to be done, at 7:15…

In reminiscing about the dreadful cold wind, I almost forgot to add that Allan took these charming photos yesterday of narcissi blooming on the edge of the approach lawn, where we dump weeds from the garden.

gone wild

gone wild

gone wild

gone wild

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On the May trip, I visited with Carol in the north Seattle neighbourhood of Ballard, just over the hill from my old garden. Usually I was only there in February for the garden show so it was wonderful for me to see the gardens, including this one near her house, at their peak.

Bamboo grove

Bamboo grove

Years ago, I felt I had been one of the first Seattleites to have a parking strip garden.  Now they abounded, to my delight.

Ballard parking strip garden path

Ballard parking strip garden path

parking strip with poppies

parking strip with poppies

street circle garden

street circle garden

Below:  Down the street from Carol a gay Vietnam Vet had the best circle garden of all. Sign says “fairy crossing”:

fairy crossing

fairy crossing

the same street circle

the same street circle

He had used that thing I love:  broken dishes in the garden.

street circle detail

street circle detail

Here was the sidewalk along his apartment, which Carol said had been a dive before and was now all nice.

his sidewalk garden

his sidewalk garden

On Carol and I walked past more parking strip gardens in Ballard.

parking strip mosaic

parking strip mosaic

poppies

poppies

parking strip

parking strip

Ballard parking strip

Ballard parking strip

Now I faintly recall that the trip ended with Carol driving back to the beach with me and staying over (at a motel, since our house is so small) for her usual late spring visit, so I was able to buy a few plants at Fremont Gardens.

Fremont Gardens

Fremont Gardens

I believe that this garden shop is now the excellent Emerald City Gardens.

Fremont Gardens

Fremont Gardens

Fremont Gardens

Fremont Gardens way cool stuff

Fremont Gardens

Fremont Gardens

Stipa gigantea at Fremont Gardens

Stipa gigantea at Fremont Gardens

and poppies

and poppies

And then, back to the beach, until my next escape.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Standing by the back porch lookingnorth to the lawn, two views:  June 18th and July 18th:

Below:  The back porch, June 18th and July 3rd.  Marilyn’s mum recently told us that M. does not like or even quite approve of beer, and so hops might not have been the best choice of vine for the porch railing!  Oops.  We were assured she does think it is pretty.

18 July, backdrop of hops on porch

Behind the back porch, a drainage area for roof water, with daylilies and Siberian iris and grasses alongside…

river rock swale, stepping stones to faucet

The view from the garage entrance, 3 July and 18 July:

Allan deadheading the Shasta daisies, which get huge…perhaps because of a manure mulch applied the previous fall:

18 July, just your ordinary shasta daisies…

Some views of the long border:

18 June

3 July

18 July

And now…the plants….all proven very resistant to deer.  They’ve munched many things I’ve tried in this garden, including a failed backdrop of Escallonia to hide the neighbours’ garage, but these plants have prospered.

18 June, catmint, santolina, daises

18 June, Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low'(catmint), Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’, California poppies

3 July, Penstemon, Blue Oat Grass

3 July, Salvia ‘May Night’, Anthemis ‘Sauce Hollandaise’, Allium albopilosum, golden marjoram

3 July, Cistus ‘Elma’

3 July, poppy

3 July, Knautia macedonica backed with grasses (Miscanthus variegatus is the white-ish one)

3 July, Knautia macedonica

3 July, feverfew

3 July, Stipa gigantea, my favourite grass

3 July, Allium albopilosum

3 July, daises, Miscanthus, bronze fennel

3 July, Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’, Santolina, Eragrostis curvula (weeping love grass)

3 July, Dianthus

3 July, Achillea (yarrow)

18 July, Phygelius ‘Moonraker’

18 July, Penstemon

18 July, Phygelius

18 July, white painted sage, drumstick allium, feverfew? anthemis?, Scabiosa

18 July, painted sage (pink and blue), Allium albopilosum, feverfew, Shasta daisies, Cosmos

18 July, Echinops ritro (blue globe thistle)

18 July, Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’

18 July, Eryngium (sea holly), Knautia

18 July, Cosmos ‘Yellow Garden’; this one bloomed in July but most of this colour waited till mid September.

13 August, dahlias

13 August, Achillea (yarrow)

9 Sept, Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’

9 September, Allium albopilosum

9 Sept, Eupatorium (Joe Pye Weed), Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’

30 October, Marilyn’s plant table with a stray pumpkin

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