Posts Tagged ‘Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’’

Monday, 30 April 2018

Skooter taking in the sun on the front porch

My most beloved Monty Don (host of Gardeners’ World) says that black beetles are a sign of a healthy garden, and that they eat slugs.

Here’s one crossing our driveway this morning. (Allan’s photo)

I love the way the slightly darker, glossier post office sets off our volunteer garden:

Stipa gigantea

By the way, someone convinced me that Stipa should be pronounced with an i like pipe or ripe.  Montagu DON says Stee-pa. So! Stee-pa it is.

Allium neapolitanum

The Red Barn Arena

We met the new barn cat, Cosmo.

A Coast Guard helicopter flew overhead while we worked.

Allan’s photos

my new friend, 9 months old

Someone had left a gift of buttercup flowers in a barrel.

We are still not over our bad, debilitating colds, but we do feel more energetic today.

Tulip clusiana ‘Lady Jane’

crabbing gear at the barn

Diane’s garden

Allan added a bale of Gardner and Bloome mulch to the driveway corner garden.



I added an Agastache ‘Cotton Candy’ and some more sweet pea seeds to the long roadside bed.

Our main focus was adding some Agastache ‘Acapulco Salmon and Pink’ and ‘Sangria’, Salvia patens, Nicotiana langsdorfii, and some seeds (alyssum, pale yellow cosmos ‘Xanthos’, night scented stock, peachy nasturtiums) to the raised septic garden.

Over the fence:

Allan’s photo

I am most pleased with the display so far in this new raised bed.

Tulip ‘Cummins’

Tulip ‘Cummins’

Tulip ‘Cool Crystal’

Tulip ‘China Town’

Tulip ‘Cool Crystal’ in a pot

The Planter Box

We visited The Planter Box to see if they might have a columnar ornamental pear to replace one that got taken out by a drunk driver in Ilwaco.  The only one was THIS size:

PB co-owner Raymond is a tall man. This tree is maybe even too big to even fit in the sidewalk hole!

Well.  We had thought we were not going to have to be the ones to deal with the tree issue at all, and now that it is so late, we may just have to plant flowers in that one sidewalk spot. I heartily rejected the proposed idea (not proposed at the Planter Box!) that we should just put in a different kind of tree.  You cannot put in one odd duck in a run of ten street trees.

If only the Planter Box had had one the size of their manageable apple trees:

At the Planter Box:

Armeria maritima (sea thrift)


Klipsan Beach Cottages

Due to bad weather, and our bad colds, and our Shelburne Hotel garden project, we had not been to KBC all month.  We found that the deer had been getting into the fenced garden and eating the roses.  Other than that, all looked well enough and we got the garden somewhat groomed and a few plants planted in a busy two hour gardening frenzy.  I was grateful that Allan did all the planting—my least favourite gardening job.

Allan’s photos:

a new Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ 

The podophyllum has gone from one leaf to three this year.

unfurling sword ferns

My photos:

tree peony

roses stripped by deer

Thalictrum ‘Elin’

Tulips ‘Black Hero’ and ‘Sensual Touch’

Tulip ‘Formosa’

Tulip ‘Formosa’

Tulip ‘Cool Crystal’


viridiflora tulips

pond garden

tulips and Persicaria ‘Golden Arrow’

taking leave of the tidied up garden


On the way home, we made one little stop at the Shelburne, where Allan staked a little (will be big) Fuchsia ‘Sharpitor Aurea’; I had gotten worried it would be stepped on.

I had to do billing, so might not get to watch any Gardeners’ World this evening.  Maybe…just one episode at bedtime.


Bliss. In episode five of year 2015, a jungle garden is visited.

You can watch the segment Here .

At age 60, Monty can gracefully flop to the ground to commune with the plants.

I envy that spryness.

Takeaway: “It is important to make ponds because we’ve lost the ponds that used to be on farmlands all over the country.”

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Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Shelburne Hotel

We planted an assortment of my favourite plants: Agastaches ‘Acapulco Salmon and Pink’ and ‘Sangria’ and ‘Golden Jubilee’, Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’, Helenium ‘Mardi Gras’, Zaluzianskya ovata (which should give great fragrance in the evening, so it went by the pub deck and the front entry), Diascia ‘Blackthorn Apricot’ (in pots with a couple of the Zaluzianskya).  This involved removing plants that had scattered into the wrong places during our long absence (the years when we did not work here between 2009 and now), including more monkshood that is popping up here and there (too poisonous for a public garden).

I am still desperate for a Melianthus major ‘Antenow’s Blue’ to grow under the arched window as in days of old.  Plain melianthus would be too tall, and not as blue.  Can’t get Antenow’s Blue here!   I don’t want to mail order it; hoping Melissa will find me one at Xera Plants.

looking north from the entry

Years ago:

summer garden at the Shelburne Inn

looking south from the entry

the pub deck with a couple of newly planted pots

a couple of newly planted semi shade pots in the back garden

While we worked, a staff member was digging out the six back yard beds.  In yesterday’s heat, he had removed the railroad ties.  This area will be graveled and will become a wedding and event area.

progress in the back garden

as it was a week ago

Allan hose watered for the first time this year.

Allan’s photo

I had brought a bouquet for the lobby:

And the new sign by the street had been installed. Wait till you see the gorgeous job that Brady was doing on the trim.

You can see photos of the interior, old and new, in this article from Wander with Wonder.

We appreciate the mention by the author.

Just north of the Shelburne, across the street, Allan photographed an art gallery’s sign:

Long Beach

A fog had blown in, welcome but chilly enough to require a jacket.  We deadheaded the planters, tree beds, Veterans Field and Fifth Street Park.

My photos:

Tulip ‘China Town’

Tulip ‘China Town’

Strong Gold tulip still going so strong.

tree garden

Tulip ‘Silverstream’ and Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’

Narcissus ‘Baby Moon’

Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’

Tulip greigii ‘Fire of Love’

Tulip greigii ‘Fire of Love’ and ‘Silverstream’

Muscari paradoxum

Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’ and ‘Black Hero’

Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’

Tulips ‘Formosa’ and ‘Green Wave’

Fifth Street Park, where the horsetail was back!  And camassia.

Fifth Street Park

color clash! (The city crew greatly reduced the street trees this spring.)

Allan’s photos:

green primrose at city hall

in a planter

deadheading before

and after



Tulip ‘Silverstream’

The last two blocks of deadheading were a challenge as suddenly the weather was hot again and I SO regretted having a jacket on (but had no way to carry it and my weed/deadhead bucket and tools).  On the way home, we deadheaded the welcome sign.

welcome sign

At home: clean debris for the compost bins.

Allan’s photo

Allan went to the port office to check on yesterday’s plants, and we are pleased to know the office staff watered.

Allan’s photo

Because I planted more bachelor button seeds and added a clump of monarda (bee balm) to the Shelburne back garden (both have edible flowers), the work list got shorter.

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Tuesday, 17 April 2018

I got very little sleep because of worrying that we were both going to get sick.  With the clam festival coming up, we had much to do in Long Beach town.  There is no back up plan if we can’t do it; all of our other working gardener friends are even busier than we are.

Little dramas loom large when one is self employed.

Allan felt poorly in the morning with sniffles and a cough, and yet with the good weather, we did go to work.  It is maddening; we were so good about disinfecting our hands every time we went somewhere public, and yet…the germs got him.

If only we could have followed Skooter’s example:


(Skooter has a chin condition, a problem common with orange cats, says the vet.  My orange cat of years ago, Valene, had the same thing.)

On the way, we dropped off a book at the library (housed in the Ilwaco Community Building).

at the Ilwaco Community Building

Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’ at the community building

The community building garden needs a bit of weeding…(not shown in the photos above).

In case I end up having to go to work on the bus later this week, we went to the two least-accessible-by-bus jobs first.

The Red Barn

Because I am thinking of using a different plant for the centerpiece of the Ilwaco planters, Allan pointed out how good the Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ looks at the Red Barn.  They get less wind here.

My very good friend Rosie was at the barn.

Diane’s garden

My very good old friend Misty greeted us next door at Diane’s garden.


till the camera clicked

The septic box bulb display pleased me; we had missed some of it, of course.  After deadheading:

Muscari ‘Bling Bling’

Muscari paradoxum

I was pleased to find sweet peas just emerging along the picket fence.

The corner driveway garden needs mulching; soon, I hope. I asked Allan to take this photo, and did not get what I wanted, which is the fact that the Stipa gigantea grass is already showing flower spikes.  Oops, I should have specified.

Long Beach

Long Beach had been on the schedule for all day this coming Thursday, to get the parks and planters perfect for the Razor Clam Festival.  I was fretting about what would happen if we both got sick and could not work then.  So we did a lot of it today, which led to more fretting on my part that I was going to make Allan sicker by having him work.  I brooded about how I recently delayed one day taking Calvin to the vet, prioritizing work instead because he seemed not especially sick, and then…we know how that turned out.

We went down the six downtown blocks of street trees and planters, deadheading.  I felt reassured each time I saw Allan taking a photo, figuring it must mean he did not feel too terrible.  (He said, “It’s easier than working!”)

Allan’s planter and tree garden photos:

Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’ and Tulip ‘Silverstream’ and Tulip sylvestris

Geum ‘Mango Lassi’ and muscari

Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ in street tree garden (with tulip)

Tulip ‘China Town’ and Fritillaria meleagris

Tulip ‘Princess Irene’

AKA ‘Prinses Irene’

Tulip ‘Silverstream’

Van Engelen catalog says: A magical sport of Jewel of Spring, fragrant Silverstream ranges from creamy-yellow to deep yellow with red feathering, to red with every combination in between. But the surprise garden party doesn’t stop there: it has showy, attractive foliage with silver-white margins. (Did you know that the phenomena of marginated foliage occurs due to a lack of or insufficient pigmentation and chlorophyll in the plant cells on the outer petal edges?)

I did not think to smell the tulips nor did I notice white margins on the foliage.

street tree garden

Tulips ‘Green Wave’ and ‘Formosa’

Tulip ‘Formosa’

lower left: a tulip ‘Sensual Touch’ that went mushy with rain

My planter and tree garden photos:

Tulips that had been broken, and not by the wind.

Tulip ‘Silverstream’

As you can tell by now, I planted a big run of Silverstream through town.  I think they are too tall to choose again.  And the color variation is nice but it does not thrill me.

one of the viridiflora (green) tulips…too tired to look it up

Tulip ‘Strong Gold’ in one of the windiest planters. Short and strong.

Tulip ‘Strong Gold’

Tulip ‘Strong Gold’…would that all tulips were this tough

more Silverstream

Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’ and Tulip acuminata

Tulips ‘Sensual Touch’ and ‘Black Hero’

Tulips ‘Green Star’, sylvestris, acuminata

Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’

Tulips ‘Prinses Irene’, ‘Sensual Touch’, ‘Black Hero’

We also weeded in Fifth Street Park because…Razor Clam Festival!  Fifth Street Park needs so much more attention, and I hope we can do more later this week.  So much horsetail, so much wild garlic.  (No photos there.)

We went on to Veterans Field, which will be the central place for the clam festival.  It is not ideal to deadhead and weed four days before the festival, but needs must.

Veterans Field flag pavilion garden

The last time we were in Long Beach, Allan asked where the blue was in that arc garden.  I said the grape hyacinth along the edge.  Well, now look at what a string trimmer did:

Muscari ‘Ocean Magic’ as was

And right before the festival, when we were trying to make it perfect despite feeling poorly.  I wanted to lie down on the lawn and blub, but it would be too hard to get back up again.  Some white narcissi were also casualties along the edge.  Then I thought…Ok, maybe this is a sign that I do not have to struggle so hard and fret so darn much about making it perfect.  Maybe I can stop worrying about whether we will be able to get back to deadhead on Thursday.

Still….dang blang it!

On the way south, we deadheaded the welcome sign.

And finally, we paused at the

Shelburne Hotel

where I planted 9 more violas and two Agastache ‘Apricot Sunrise’.  I would like to have weeded more, but we had already worked four hours longer than I had originally planned and Allan was not feeling any better.  The question is, was it wiser to work today so that we can take a day off? Or did it make everything worse?  It would have been so bad if we had stayed home today and then both got sick and couldn’t do a thing before the weekend.  It would be even worse if we got even sicker.  Such woes of self employment have plagued me for the last 42 years.

three by the fig tree, the rest in front

If the gardens in Long Beach are not perfect when you attend clam festival, you now know why.  We forgot to stop at First Place Mall on the way south and deadhead the one dead narcissus that I noticed in the planter there.  I will try not to lose sleep over it.

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Tuesday, 10 April 2018

I was mighty surprised to wake up to working weather.

looking out the front door

I wish I could photograph white flowers well.  I guess I need to read up on how to do it.  I do find it helps to boost the highlights in editing.

at home, Fritillaria meleagris alba (backed with the regular purple ones)

Long Beach

I was eager to finish the mulching of the Long Beach trees and planters.  The day would be interrupted by another project, but we got a good start while waiting for a text.

First, the mulch. The pile is getting very low; we are promised more soon. (Allan’s photo)

It was so windy….and not especially cold.

Veterans Field, Allan’s photo. The ginormous American flags had been taken down, probably because of the storm.

I love peony and fringed tulips.  Some have turned to mush because of the rain, but not all.

Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’, Tulip acuminata (also a tulip that I love)

Lewis and Clark Square planter

Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’ (Allan’s photo)

Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’ (Allan’s photo)

another wee species tulip (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

Tulip ‘Silverstream’ (Allan’s photo)

A business had left out some flourescent tubes in the garden…for the city crew to pick up, apparently??  I hope no one decides it would be fun to break these into the garden bed.

Allan’s photo

Our text arrived that Sea Star Gardening had dropped off a fig tree for us, so we stopped Long Beach and drove a couple of miles south to

The Shelburne Hotel

When I had emailed owner Tiffany to ask if she’d like a fig tree in the back garden (a herbs and edibles theme), she replied that she had, the very night before, dreamed that she was trying to figure out where to put a fig tree there.  That’s cosmic.  I replied that it could go into a warm nook on the south wall (where it might eventually fill in the space and need some pruning.  Maybe after we retire! If we ever do).


I fervently hoped that I would not find a stump under the tatty landscape fabric in that nook.  I remembered how years ago a big ball of conifer grew in there.  No stump was found, hallelujah!

Allan’s photo

There was much sotto voce and sometimes whispered argy bargy about proper depth of the hole, what to do with the gravel, and so on.  We don’t want to end up on a Trip Advisor review as the arguing gardeners who ruined a guest’s peaceful afternoon.

We pulled out the lightweight fabric and used the gravel to make a building maintenance and wood protection U shaped edge, planted the tree,  and put in some herbs for now (which eventually will get moved because of fig tree shade).

The six railroad tie enclosed squares in the back garden are going to be removed to make a big patio.  I saved a French sorrel from one of those beds and planted it in front of the fig…It will be okay there for awhile.  When we get the west beds cleared of orange montbretia, we will also save the many chives and make an edge out of them.

In the front garden, some Tulip ‘Lilac Wonder’ are left from bulb plantings I did over ten years ago.

Tulip bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’

Our project took a couple of hours (along with some weeding). Today would have been a good day to dig out orange montbretia in the sheltered, almost windless Shelburne garden, but instead we went back to

Long Beach

to finish mulching the trees and planters.

Just as we were leaving the Shelburne, I got a call from Parks Manager Mike that the crew had removed the huge miscanthus which had been crammed (by the original landscape architect) into a narrow bed in Fifth Street Park.  We went to fix up that area first thing.

last November

the cut back grass after we tagged it a couple of weeks ago

before, the rose can breathe easy this summer. (Allan’s photo)

after, with an Eryngium ‘Jade Frost’ added. (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo

In the city works yard, where we bucketed up enough soil for the last two blocks, we saw the resident killdeer.

The pile is almost gone now. (Allan’s photo)

The wind of 25-35 mph had gotten not just pushy but cold, so the last two blocks were a miserable time. I had almost decided to leave it for another day. However, when loading the soil, I remembered that the new season of Deadliest Catch starts tonight.  I would have felt weak and foolish if I had quit the job because of some cold dry wind, gone home, and found later that Deadliest Catch was on my DVR.

Our work is not this hard.  (photo courtesy Discovery Channel, Deadliest Catch)

I had not taken many photos today because the wind sapped my enthusiasm.  In the final two blocks, I managed a few.

Muscari armeniacum

tiny white narcissi with tiny cup

Narcissi bulbocodium ‘Golden Bells’

a different and more subtle muscari

Tulip ‘China Town’

Tulip ‘China Town’

We had enough buckets of soil left to weed and mulch the “tiny pop outs” on Ocean Beach Boulevard, a block north of city hall.  That was the coldest and worst part of the the day.

a sad mess, before (Allan’s photo)

after (Allan’s photo)

Allan’s photo


Don’t look close; I did not get every weed.

I have decided to not battle the yellow evening primrose in these little beds, having read in The Evening Garden that it is fragrant at night.  Neither of these get any supplemental water in summer unless we remember to bucket water them.

The red rhododendron is in bloom at city hall.

This mean it must be soon be time to make a spring visit to Steve and John’s Bayside Garden!

On the way home, we paused to photograph the welcome sign, where the tulips are coming on strong.

In the front, I tried a different Colorblends mix than usual, “Big Ups.”

just starting out, hope the deer don’t browse them…

The back has ‘Trident Mix’.

At home, I was able to erase three jobs from the work board.  (The roses thing is just to dig up a few more rugosa roses along the street edge of the beach approach for two friends who want some but were out of town during our clean up of that garden.)

If the forecast of rain and 45 mph wind comes true for tomorrow, it will most decidedly not be a work day.



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Thursday, 12 November 2015

I woke to wind, and I lay for a bit thinking that the Depot Restaurant might be a sheltered spot to plant bulbs out of the southern gale.  Then I looked out the window and saw sheets of rain.  (The wind had been blowing so hard that it had hidden the sound of raindrops.)  Never mind.  Today would be the day to do the bulb spreadsheets (lists for each job, quantity, name, and price).

Allan took pretty much all the photos today other than some tulip photos of years past.

Mary (Allan's photo)


Too wet!

Too wet!

Allan's photo: Do you see my friend?

Do you see my friend?

Allan's photo

Our neighbour, Onyx, had found a sheltered spot to watch hummingbirds. Perhaps we need to fit him up with a BirdsBeSafe collar like our cats wear.

Allan's photo: Out of the wind

Out of the wind

Allan's photo: Our neighbour, Onyx, had found a sheltered spot to watch hummingbirds. Perhaps we need to fit him up with a BirdsBeSafe collar like our cats wear.

Allan's photo

Mahonia in Allan's garden

Mahonia in Allan’s garden

my rainy view

my rainy view from my spread sheet table

Tetrapanax buds

Tetrapanax buds

I thought the above were Tetrapanax FLOWERS till Todd told me they are just the buds, and that the flowers open white…if we only had a long enough summer.  I Googled to find a photo of the flower, and found it here, on a blog which includes one of my favourite quotations from my favourite author:

“People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.” – Iris Murdoch

Allan went to get the mail and observed these workers on a roof nearby, who unlike us, had not been able to take the day off.  They’d been working on this roof for a few days and I am sure they had hoped to get it done before this storm.


Meanwhile, I got a text from Todd that he was actually out on gardening jobs in this weather.  While looking up wind gusts later on, I found this map that shows the difference in wind intensity between Ilwaco and the north end of the Peninsula where Todd lives.


35 (with a maximum 46 mph gust) here, 17 up there on the ocean side, maybe even less on the bay side.

The storm should continue well into tomorrow.


I sent this to Garden Tour Nancy, since her husband Phil frequents the jetty for fishing.

I sent this to Garden Tour Nancy, since her husband Phil frequents the jetty for fishing.  She replied that just yesterday he got drenched with a wave while standing on the highest rock.

All afternoon I did bulb spread sheets, till my brain thoroughly ached.  I thought you plant nuts might be interested in some of what I am planting in my own garden, some of each of the following:

Allium albopilosum, Allium schubertii, Camassia cusickii, Camassia leitchlinii alba, Crocus ‘Jeanne D’arc’, Crocus ‘Vanguard’, Lilies ‘Acapulco’,  ‘Beverly Dreams’,  ‘Orange Marmalade’.  I’m sure I also have some of the other tall alliums.  Definitely have 5 Allium ‘Forelock’ that did not make it onto my own spreadsheet.


Allium Forelock, summer 2014

Narcissus ‘Felindre’,  ‘Kedron’,  ‘Lieke’,  ‘Martha Stewart’ (ordered because Lorna of Andersen’s is a big Martha fan, and now she has moved to Seattle so won’t see it), ‘Mint Julep’,  ‘New Baby’ (very excited about this new version of ‘Baby Moon!), ‘Pacific Coast’, ‘Pipit’, ‘Pueblo’,  ‘Rapture’, ‘Red Devon’,  ‘Surfside’, ‘Thalia Sun’ (new version of Thalia!!),  ‘Toto’,  ‘Tweety Bird’,  ‘Unsurpassable’, ‘Yazz’,  Narcissus poeticus recurvus (the poeticus are my favourites.)

Tulip ‘Antoinette’, ‘Exotic Emperor’,  ‘Fantasy’,  ‘Fire of Love’,  ‘Formosa’, ‘Green Wave’ (my favourite tulip),  ‘Madonna’, ‘Night Rider’, ‘Orange Princess’,  ‘Rococo’,  ‘Spring Green’, ‘Strong Gold’ (a great do-er for Long Beach planters),  ‘Virichic’, ‘White Parrot’, acuminata,  batalinii ‘Bright Gem’,  batalinii ‘Salmon Gem’, clusiana ‘Lady Jane’, dasystemon, kolpakowskiana, and praestans ‘Fuselier’.

And best of all, parrot tulip 'Green Wave', a very late bloomer

Best of all, parrot tulip ‘Green Wave’, a very late bloomer

Tulip 'Formosa'

Tulip ‘Formosa’, my second favourite, great combination of green flames and good and very late bloomer

Tulip 'Akebono'; note the thin red petal outline

Tulip ‘Akebono’; note the thin red petal outline

As I worked on this planter, passersby swooned over Tulip 'Akebono'.

As I worked on this planter last spring, passersby swooned over Tulip ‘Akebono’.  My third favourite tulip, and I completely forgot to order it this year, dang it!

I had picked up Fritillaria lutea and the orange one from Costco over a month ago; the orange ones had rotted in the bag by the time I got around to sorting bulbs.  I should have known, because fritillarias want to be planted immediately, not left to sit for a month waiting for the other bulbs to arrive for sorting.  So I just have the yellow one, lutea.

Some tulips that I adore but have not ordered for a couple of years, after a soggy spring made them look sad:

'Cool Crystal' (pink) and 'Sensual Touch' (orange)

‘Cool Crystal’ (pink) and ‘Sensual Touch’ (orange)

Tulip 'Cool Crystal'

Tulip ‘Cool Crystal’; the fringes don’t do well in very rainy springtimes

in a planter: Tulip 'Sensual Touch'

in a planter: Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’

Tulip 'Cummins'

Tulip ‘Cummins’

Next year I must remember to give the fringed ones another go.  I do adore them and it is worth the risk of them not doing well, because on a good year they make me so happy.

Meanwhile, Allan sorted through the used and re-used bulb bags from the planting we had done recently, to see what could be saved to reuse for next year, and to make sure we had not missed any bulbs.

a box to be sorted

a box to be sorted

after sorting

after sorting

He did such a useful thing this year, crossing off all my scribblings with a big black marker so that next year I don’t have to cross them off as I sort.

Despite the storm, we had dinner plans with our three gardening friends who drove all the way down from Oysterville.

The Cove Restaurant

and the weekly meeting of the North Beach Garden Gang (with us, Dave and Melissa, and Todd in attendance).

at The Cove

at The Cove

Allan's photo: perusing the menu

Allan’s photo: perusing the menu

pear and goat cheese salad

pear and goat cheese salad

Allan's noodle bowl

Allan’s noodle bowl


Melissa's halibut and our table by the fireplace

Melissa’s halibut and our table by the fireplace

after dinner

after dinner

Todd, the golf mascot,

Todd, the golf mascot, Dave, Melissa and me; the wind was blowing sheets of rain against the building and the parking lot looked like a lake.  Dave was ready to lead the way.

Tomorrow, the weather is supposed to be equally bad if not worse.  With all the spreadsheets done, I just might get a reading day at last.



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We made our second visit to a brand new job today, a garden that is just a few blocks further down Lake Street.

Mike's garden

Mike’s garden

It is, in fact, our mayor’s garden.  I believe it was at least partly designed by Carol Jones, with whose “The Elves Did It” gardening business I shared some work in 2003.

Today was our second visit and I enjoyed working at Carol’s former job because all those years ago she had worked on some of my jobs and this made for an interesting switch.    One thing I feel the garden cried out for is some clumps of small narcissi.  There was not a one!


Carol liked gardens with clipped and tidy shrubs.  I must find out if Mike likes things a little looser, because I think the small square boxwoods should be allowed to size up a bit.

boxwood path

boxwood path

I found a circle garden around a tree in the less formal back yard area.

tree circle

tree circle

I spoke with a cute little dog through the lattice of the back porch.

shiny dog nose

shiny dog nose

Then we went to our longtime client Cheri’s garden.  Mike’s garden is conveniently located kitty corner across the street.  (We are so busy we would not have taken on a new garden had it not been so very handy.)

I wonder if two photos will tell the tale of  tulips with and without shotweed.

Cheri's front garden tulips before

Cheri’s front garden tulips before

and after weeding

and after weeding

I find it hard to tell the difference from the photos.

Cheri's narcissi

Cheri’s narcissi

I love those small cups.

I love those frilly small cups.

Cheri's front garden

Cheri’s front garden

Allan alerted me that as we packed up, Frank was watching us from the side window:

blue eyed Frank

blue eyed Frank

Frank among the clouds

Frank among the clouds

Frank among the clouds


Til next time, Frank..

And then at last it was time for my coffee klatsch with Patt and Judy…We had been bereft for a couple of weeks while Olde Towne was in the process of moving.

coffee/lunch hour with Patt, Judy, and Luanne!

coffee/lunch hour with Patt, Judy, and Luanne!

We were so pleased that after three bustling days, Luanne had time to sit with us for awhile.

During the two hours that I schmoozed with friends, Allan nobly weeded horsetail at the boatyard garden and took these photos to share the horror.

hideous large horsetail

hideous large horsetail

The large horsetail looks difficult but is actually easier to control than the finer, thin type (the latter being, unfortunately, the kind in my garden).

boatyard weeding progress...still two blocks to go.

boatyard weeding progress…still two blocks to go.

We both went on to work in Long Beach in the quiet evening.   Allan spent the time in the quadrant of parks on Fifth Street.   One of them has lots of the wild garlic, the same that we battled yesterday in Ann’s garden, and he removed enough so that it does not look like a grassy haze to the untutored eye.

Allan's project before

Allan’s project before…and a horsetail to boot!

There is no after photo to show you how much better it looked.

Meanwhile I had the more pleasant job of walking the ten blocks of street trees and planters, deadheading narcissi and tulips and pulling small weeds.   I’ll share some of the flower show with you, especially for Mr and Mrs. Tootlepedal, whose flowers in south Scotland are not as far along as ours.

Lewis and Clark Square planter

Lewis and Clark Square planter

Narcissi with apricot cup

Narcissi with apricot cup

foreground:  Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve'; background: Lewis and Clark

foreground: Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’; background: Lewis and Clark

the new bed at Veterans Field

the new bed at Veterans Field

Veteran's Field with white narcissi and blue and white violas

Veteran’s Field with white narcissi and blue and white violas

So far, the only red is from the foliage of a Barberry ‘Crimson Pygmy’, but the mission I have chosen to accept is to make the garden red white and blue for Loyalty Day (May 5th), when the field will be dedicated.  It will be my first ever red white and blue garden and if I do it closer to the day, I will have a better selection of plants.  One thing it will not be is red and white pelargoniums (annual geraniums) and blue lithodora.

The narrow border wraps partway around the circle.

The narrow border wraps partway around the circle.

After that half-block digression, I returned to the main street.


tulips and astible

street tree flowers

street tree flowers

I encountered my friend Heather from my favourite shop, Niva green, walking with her dog Tiny, and drew her attention to one of my favourite tulips.  Like the great botanist that I am I said “I really love the holdy thingie”….the way the flower looks cupped in a green hand.



Niva green

Niva green

I’ve planted green (viridflora) tulips in the planter by NIVA green…but of course an orange one has crept in from when the planter had tulips to tone with the building’s former colour: bright yellow.

leftover orange tulip

leftover orange tulip

I think these tulips that are just coming on might the the exciting new ‘Green Star’.

Green Star?

Green Star?

In a planter originally done back in the volunteer days by my friend Susie who owns the Boreas Inn, her red tulips are still coming back but with some of the flowers a bit smaller every year.





I walked a half a block west on Bolstadt to deadhead the narcissi at Long Beach city hall.

Tulip 'Leo' at city hall

Tulip ‘Leo’ at city hall

Pulmonaria at city hall

Pulmonaria at city hall

Tulips and Hebe, city hall

Tulips and Hebe, city hall

A lambs ear has reseeded itself next to a lamp post at Bolstadt and Ocean Beach Boulevard.



Back to the main drag…I see the Erysimum are doing well in the four whiskey barrels in Fish Alley.

Bowles Mauve

Bowles Mauve

in a planter: Tulip 'Sensual Touch'

in a planter: Tulip ‘Sensual Touch’

Tulip 'Cut Crystal'

Tulip ‘Cut Crystal’

And finally, on the way to dump Allan’s park debris at city works, we just had to stop and deadhead the narcissi in Margaret’s garden on the way…

Margaret's narcissi

Margaret’s narcissi

Tomorrow: we must attend to several resort and business gardens and if we get lucky with time, we might get to check on the garden at Golden Sands Assisted Living which is rather worrying me as we have only been there once this year.

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