Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Things Change

First off, let me thank FlowerLady for the new quote that I am using in my profile. It struck a nerve when I read it over at her blog a few days ago. I really thought it was quite poignant.

Originally I had planned a trip to Virgina today to help a friend with some work. Those plans changed early this morning so I was left wandering around the yard looking for something to do. I had asked advice on GardenWeb earlier in the week about my backyard. With the new arbor being constructed, I found that I had inadvertently created an axis from the street terminating at the Belle of Georgia peach tree I planted this spring. I wasn't too happy with the look.

I got lots of feedback and some great ideas. People love to give you suggestions when they don't have to lift a finger to dig a hole. Speaking of holes, I began transplanting some shrubs from various parts of the yard. They're all small, but they grow fast, especially given more sun than they were getting in their previous locations.

When I dig here, I hit stone a few inches down. I use all this stone to create my borders around the beds. This one will be no different.

Even a small hole 12" deep and 24" wide will turn up a lot of rock.

I've already started laying these stones along the back side of the driveway bed I built in March.

With a can of orange paint from my model making days, I laid out what I thought to be a nice shape. I'll be filling it with shrubs to provide some privacy through the arbor into the backyard. Today, I transplanted a white spirea, two loropetalum shrubs that were in poor sun exposure spots, two cherry laurels I started from seed this winter, and 5 rooted rose cuttings. These cuttings were broken from various roses when we received our first shipment in March. I brought them home instead of throwing them away. Almost a dozen cuttings were stuck. These 5 survived and rooted easily. They weren't planted when I took this photo, but I've since sprayed the grass with RoundUp and dug up several more rocks for the edge. I'm only using chemicals here because of the centipede and bermuda grass in the lawn. It's nearly impossible to kill using my normal half-baked lasagna method.

I'll get some cardboard from the store on Wednesday, pick up some leaf mulch from the landfill, and finalize the shape. Overnight, I should see some results from the spray.

While walking around this morning, there were several things I noticed.

I have a foxglove that's sending up a stalk.

Coreopsis Full Moon is about to bloom.

Lemon Mint Bee Balm is coming back nicely from the hack job I did on it a few weeks ago.

Four O'Clocks and KnockOut roses are the same color.

A brugmansia has several flower buds.

The Green Zebra tomato was picked and eaten with cucumbers my parents brought.

Butternut squash gets big.

Yellow squash gets even bigger.

Cucumbers in my own garden are coming on nicely.

The first mammoth sunflower has bloomed. Castor beans and cherry tomatoes in front.

The morning glory at the chimney is starting to climb the new trellis.

The lavender crape myrtle is happy again.

Wintersown Sea Holly is blooming, a year ahead of schedule.

So is the Queen Anne's lace.

I spent some time early this morning pulling weeds in the perennial bed. In the bare spots, I planted more squash with nasturtiums. I sowed some beans and cucumbers in various areas, too. I'd like to get two harvests this year. If we don't get some rain soon, I'll have to water the potager. Right now, only the perennial bed has needed water. I gave it an hour with the sprinkler on Saturday, and another hour today. It's 84 and sunny with no rain in the forecast until Friday evening.

It's been a long day. I'm about ready to call it quits and cook some squash and corn for dinner. Silver Queen from my parents' garden is in the crisper drawer. It's gonna be delicious.


Engineeredgarden said...

Man....that's rocky ground! I bet any landscaping performed quickly turns into quite a chore. Your butternut squash is looking fantastic. Mine are sucking right now. *sigh*

Patsi 'Garden Endeavors' said...

Talk about rock and clay...
What a pain it must be everytime you dig a hole !

You've proven that soil can be amended to support life. Great looking garden. Glad I stoped by.


FlowerLady said...

Good morning Tom ~ I'm so glad Sarah's quote struck a nerve with you, it did me also.

I just can't get over your wonderful gardens. What a difference time makes. I am proud of you and your efforts are paying off, big time.

I'm glad your newly moved crepe perked back up for you.

Have a great day and enjoy the beauty you are creating all around you.


patientgardener said...

I have the same problem with digging up lumps of granite in my soil whenever I dig a new border as well - I also use them for edging beds.

Garden is looking great and I am looking forward to seeing the new border planted up

Kris said...

Hi Tom. Say, those 'stones' look a lot like flint. You could make some nice stone-age gardening tools. Wish I had some flint around here...