Sunday, May 22, 2011

I have a picture post to make in the near future, but for now this is just a boring To Do list trying to itemize how the hell I'm going to accomplish everything I need to accomplish during my glorious Project Week of Doom.


* acquire concrete and trowel (thank you, brute squad)
* weeded most of the upper 1/3 of the front yard - more like half, actually, considering that the path takes up a fair swath of the middle - to the point where it's mulchable
* established a nice flat-bottomed trench for the concrete toe on one side of the path


Tuesday (forecast: partly sunny)

Starting 8AM
* install half of concrete toe, weeding during any pauses (installation 2h? curing 3h w sprinkler)
* while curing: empty project room, move baby stuff into former project room, move bookshelves and futon into new project room
12 or 1PM
* delicious Zola's lunch w Corey
* mulch upper half of front yard (except edge around path)
3 - 4:30 PM
* tackle setup of project room and baby's room

Wednesday (forecast: partly sunny)

* dig trench for concrete toe on other side (2h)
* weeding middle of yard (except edge around path)
* continuing setup of project room and baby's room
* lunch
* install concrete toe on other side
* while curing, top up backyard mulch, weeding as I go

Thursday (forecast so far: showers)

* deal with weedy edges around pathway
* mulch middle of yard
* weed front bed and mulch
* linen closets

Friday (forecast so far: periods of rain)

* deal with Mt. Laundry
* clean up bedrooms

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The current forecast of a solid week of rain would be depressing, except that I just planted all my bare-root catalogue perennials while it was sunny out, so I am doing a gleeful happy dance instead. GROW MY PRETTIES, AHAHAHAHAHAAA.

I am quite pleased with the way the back yard is shaping up. It remains a work in progress, obviously, but still: filling in and up with a very gratifying mix of colours and textures. Need to keep an eye out for possibilities for late-season colour on the shady side - haven't yet laid hands on any monkshood, for instance, and I may yet try another japanese anemone and some more brunnera.

Also need to hit Canadian Tire for some of their lovely shrimpy $2.50 perennials, namely foxglove and delphiniums, although I may try direct seeding the foxgloves first (Note To Self: AFTER mulch!) My delphinium patch is oddly depleted this year - it's back to about half its previous size. Not sure if that's due to weather or just what's meant by "short-lived perennial". Oh well, now I can pop some pink ones in there too.

Also not doing so well: some of the roses. Prairie Joy only died back by maybe 1 cm at the very, very tips of the canes, and otherwise is leafing out prolifically. Blaze died back to the base again, but that's par for the course for it, as far as I've observed in previous years, and at least it looks like it's starting to put out new canes. We'll see how it does this year, I guess; it doesn't seem to get the chance to really climb very far, maybe I should replace with something hardier like John Cabot or Quadra. Teasing Georgia and The Fairy, meanwhile, although still green at the base, do not seem to be growing or leafing out at all. After The Fairy's performance in the fall, I am baffled. Maybe it put out too much new growth too late in the season? Well, if it dies, I will replace it with one of the compact Mordens, those should be slightly more indestructible. And Teasing Georgia...I don't know about that one. It's not in a particularly good location for a rose - too shady. Another clematis would probably be a better pick there. I could try moving TG out front early next spring, I suppose, and see what happens.

Need to make a field trip out to Galetta one of these days - John Davis is on my shopping list at the very least. And, well, it just wouldn't be economical to drive all that way to get ONE plant, now, would it???

Also pondering additional front-yard hardscaping, which I seriously do not have the money for right now, but may enquire about anyway to gauge how much I'd have to shore up to get it done. I'm realizing that I need some sort of dividing line between me and my neighbour - a haphazard line of dirt and mulch encroaching on his grass is just not going to do - and similarly the strip of grass that's left between the garden and the street has REALLY GOT TO GO. Building little retaining walls is kind of pushing the limit of what I'm willing to risk doing myself, though (and also may be over-ambitious given my current beach-ball-like 7-months-pregnant shape.)

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Oh, glorious experimental farm plant sale, how I ♥ you!

This year's spoils - many of which were actually on the shopping list, gasp!

* two clumps of miscanthus

* two barberries:
Gentry's Royal(2' x 2')

Rose Glow (4' x 5')

* prairie smoke

* purple daisies
* pot of phlox, colour to be a surprise

* gentian

* ghost fern

* maiden hair fern

* pink primrose

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Behold: results of the fall's mad landscaping adventure!


Still need to sweep stone dust and sand between the pavers and put in the concrete toe. I am ever hopeful that I might conceivably get this done before baby #2 arrives in July.


Eremurus! Ahahahahahahahahaaaaaaa! And two of the three have TWO leaf spikes coming up - if that ends up meaning two flower spikes I will faint dead away from delight. Then again I will probably do that if they bloom at all.

In the backyard, meanwhile:


Not much to look at yet at this time of year, but I can already tell it has increased in gorgeousness. In my spring cleanup I have tried to sweep the pine needles onto the paths so as to make a nice thick (and somewhat contrasting) mulch. We'll see how that works out, but if it actually deters weeds I'd be glad to have a use for the stuff, because the tree certainly sheds enough of it.

Details of the beds, mostly just for posterity at this point, I might come back and add ruminating at some point when it's not almost 11 p.m. on a work night:




One note I will add here, regarding the lily patch: I raked as many pine needles out of the area as I could and doused everything with neem oil. Result: ~10 lily beetles were disturbed out of their hiding places and hunted to their doom. IT STARTS. Siiiiiiigh.



Behold the trench!

Aaaaaand one detail: bloodroot, very briefly (and rather gorgeously) in flower.