building a garden with little skill but boundless enthusiasm
Sunday, June 19, 2011
To Do Soonish
* stakes and twine for lilies * cart last little heap of mulch into backyard and spread around shade bed * bylaw-related digging (need to figure out wtf to do with the dirt we take out, though) * purchase and set up arbour for John Davis rose to climb on * deadhead roses * weed between patio stones, especially stupid invading crab-and-other-grass * trench around patio to keep stupid invading grass at bay * sweep sand into walkway joints
* Plant-shopping outing to Galetta with my mom. We visited Galetta Nurseries of hardy rose fame, of course, and also an iris garden. Mom bought a frahillion irises of all different colours, of which I will someday get divisions, and I bought more roses than I had strictly meant to, namely - John Davis (purpose of the expedition) - Seafoam (to replace the Fairy - nursery guy says that the Fairy is not really hardy here, which explains a lot) - Quadra (to replace Blaze, which was not climbing the way I wanted it to) - Marie Victorin - Morden Blush - Emily Carr (because I am a sucker for a really red rose) Emily Carr lost the couple of blooms it was promising to transplant shock and/or not enough water, but all the rest are cheerfully bursting into flower. Awesome. Pictures to follow.
* Operation Sudden Lily Beetle Death continues to take astonishingly little effort on my part this year. When I mentioned this to the Galetta Nursery guy he figured that they were just biding their time on me till July. And it's true that I did find a quantity of larvae in the last couple days. But they were isolated to a few leaves and easily disposed of. They're surprisingly visible, actually, once you know what you're looking for; they skeletonize spots on the leaves in a very distinctive way, and when you turn the leaf over, tadaaa! I am (somewhat warily) optimistic that this trend will continue.
* Have to do some more digging in the front yard, since the city has recently informed me that my current setup messes with the roadside swale (which didn't drain anyway, as witnessed by the annual winter lake at the foot of our driveway, but now that I've messed with it I have to fix it...) The inspector I dealt with was actually incredibly helpful and came out to chat over the site with me, and we have tentatively arranged that me and the Brute Squad will dig a bit of a trench at the front of the yard to make sure the water goes where it's supposed to. If this works it won't actually involve messing with more than a few plants. It actually plays into my evil schemes rather nicely, in the end, because (a) it means getting rid of that last strip of grass at the front, and (b) if I follow a neighbour's inspired example and line the trench with semi-decorative stones (river rocks? pea gravel?) it will actually provide a very nice front border for the yard. So here's hoping this doesn't somehow end up turning into a more protracted headache.
Principal results of my mad project week of doom. Mulch is the great garden civilizer.
Baptisia in bloom, yay!
Also, much to my surprise, the irises decided to bloom this year after all. I guess they were just getting settled in.
Very much looking forward to the peonies - the ones in the foundation bed are about to explode (I guess they've also started to get settled in) and the one in the front bed that my mother-in-law gave me, which I was expecting to need at least another year, has actually got a bud on it too!
The tulips are gone, but there are enough splashes of colour here and there that I'm pretty happy with the transition.
Going around the beds:
Only got around to mulching the front bit of this bed yet - oops. Ornamental rhubarb at the back is looking a little anemic - I think it might need more sun. The azalea is finally blooming, though! And peonies are also looking promising.
Very pleased with this bed at the moment! Especially the nice height of the irises at the back. Now all I need to do is get a rose back there that's hardy enough to actually climb above them. Need to somehow beat the daylilies back from around the japanese maple, too.
This one needs work, despite the alliums and spirea of fabulousness. The ongoing absence of the Fairy rose makes me sad. It has put out one lonely spray of leaves and that's it. And as predicted, the dragon is disappearing behind the golden oregano.
Pretty happy with this bed too, for a sprinkling of colour and a very nice diversity of shape and texture. Holy crap that Jacob's Ladder got tall. Not sure it's particularly visible here, but the clematis is about to explode with a zillion blooms, much to my delight!
Oh, how I long to get rid of that so-called lawn. The bed is looking semi-civilized, at least, until you get to the corkscrew hazel and Ferns of Insanity.
And its relative, the rhododendron:
Lily patch, looking astonishingly near-pristine. Not sure whether I got the drop on the beetles early in the season, if their numbers are low from my victory last year, or if they don't do so well in a cold rainy spring...I'll take the results in any case!!
Pruning seems to have had a salutory effect on the dappled willow's variegated foliage as well as its shape and bushiness. Loving the colour this adds to the sun bed.
This is the first of a few picture posts I've been meaning to make but haven't gotten around to.
Scarlet Majesty tulips, awesome as ever:
They got a little top-heavy in all the rain, unfortunately, but made a nice arrangement to dress up the kitchen for a few days:
Peach Melba tulips were interesting - they started out a pale orange (as pictured here) and changed gradually to pink. Quite lovely:
Also, I started a willow fence between me and the neighbour:
Going around the beds:
Again with the yellow tulips. Not sure if they are actually supposed to be part of the mix I ordered, or if they actually came back from last year. Oh well. At least they had some company in the daffodils.
Featuring dragon statue! Don't know that this is the right place for him, though. Waiting for better inspiration to strike.
I was actually pretty pleased with the amount of early colour I got...check out for example the spring vetchling, which I had totally forgotten I'd bought, and whose violently purple flowers were a delight.
This is my second garden, which I am putting in around my first house. When we got here in July 2008 the yard consisted of grass and a two-foot-wide border wildly overgrown with hydrangeas, ferns, daylilies, and weeds. I aspire to replace as much lawn as possible with carefree cottage-garden riots of colour and texture.
Location: Ottawa, Ontario Conditions: Zone 5a; soft, well-drained soil that tends towards sand and probably acid, thanks to a big white pine; mixed sun and dappled shade
Recent highly entertaining internet mob justice elsewhere got me to thinking, and I figured I should point out the following:
The only pictures on this blog that belong to me are those linked from my PhotoBucket account. I sometimes link to images from elsewhere on the internet, but this in no way implies ownership or permission - the images are used for illustrative purposes only (usually to show what plant I'm talking about when I don't yet own one or when mine is still shrimpy). If I've used an image of yours and you would like it removed from this site, please let me know and I'll take it down immediately. I maintain Poppycockles purely for my own reference and entertainment; it is not "monetized" and does not generate revenue for me in any way.