Yesterday’s overcast/misty day was followed by rain during the night, and this morning, I awoke to new beginnings:
The first poppy has burst forth –
After making the wonderful discovery, last year, of naturalized poppies in my wilderness (aka front yard) I failed to get that area weeded/newspapered/rocked/mulched before last year’s poppy season was over and I decided to let it go au naturale for another few months, so as not to disrupt any fallen poppy seeds and thus, deprive myself of these wondrous flowers my mom lusts after because they’ve never survived at her place – –
In my attempt to not disrupt the order of the universe in the area deemed ‘Poppyville’ – it actually looks like ‘PoppySlum” – same shot, but zoomed out so you can see what most areas of my place look like before I feel confident that I know what to keep, what to pull and how to take care of what’s already present – – (see? I’m really trying to remember the ‘Before Picture” thing!)
Not knowing of this wondrous gift, it was I, yes I, who told them to dump the sand/gravel for grading right here, thinking I was just covering weeds – – I probably unwittingly killed a dozen more poppies last year in my ignorance…
Next, I gleefully clapped my hands, and interrupted the child unit’s high score video game adventure to shout, “Come out and look!! Our mammoth sunflowers are starting to come up!”
Eight of the 40 planted seeds to grow and shade my south house wall this summer have arrived into the upper world – Yay! The Child Unit, who was taking a video game break after dutifully working on both house and garden projects this morning did, to his credit, not moan too loudly and came outside to see what all the fuss was about.
I just had to take a break from the dull/boring (housework) and fun/exciting (yardwork) to log-in and share the good news!
Yesterday while pulling out nearly a years worth of hardy grass new growth and dead strands, it occurred to me I really ought to keep a diary of my projects as I strive to transform my 3 lot, 100 year old home place into my own Garden of Eden.
I rarely think to snap pics until I’m all done – “My, ain’t that pretty? Let’s take a snapshot!”
So here are some snaps – some have before and after – some, I didn’t think about the camera until too late –
Remember the southside of the house when this project first commenced? The nice rolling ditch to funnel water right back to the foundation?
Here with a nice sanded slope I had been advised to put in place, by no less than 5 local ‘experts’, only to discover this traps wet in the stucco, which necessarily breathes from the bottom air holes?
Then the hours of digging down, sloping and installation of a secondary raised bed?
Well, here’s the south side nearly finished – tire perimeter in place and two of the perennials from last year made it – beds need their mineral/rock dust amendments and then will be planted with summer vegetables. The back portion of bed already planted with mammoth sunflowers to shade the wall – sunflower seed fits my budget better this year than the lattice work I had hoped to install between the upright poles – ah well, there’s always next year!
Fronts of the beds planted yesterday with marigold and nasturtium seeds – hopefully, my marigolds aggressively self-seed!
Me and the boy cleaned out a mess of leaves, tumbleweeds, hardy grass and dead leavings to clean out the west side of the yard fence – the below featured tree has quite a few buds on it, so not ready to give up on it just quite yet – this area will be prepared for an amaranth and cabbage bed – if the amaranth gets as tall as it says it will, should provide some nice shading late in the day. In the background, you can see Oakley, the wonder dog, lying carefully in between the rows of Jerusalem artichokes – alas, she has stunted the growth of 2 of them, but more are poking their heads out and we have 6 that are 4″+ high already!
The east side is coming along nicely – Here’s a pic from my front door during last years heavy rainstorm – and the tires I originally thought to use for the eastern perimeter.
Next, a picture of the east side in progress – beds next to the house that capture roof run-off and the establishment of what is sidewalk/what will be lawn area.
Transplanted to these beds last fall, the new irises, white and purple, have put on a lovely show and will be inter-planted with lovage and purple volcano sage. All but one of the roses transplanted from my mom’s garden last year failed to make it – one has 2 green leaves down near the base, so left it in to see what happens –
The front walk-way blocks were planted with perennial chives and annual cumin – I may regret planting chives so close to where I’m going to attempt having a pretty, run in your bare feet lawn space – time will tell. The side of the lawn planted with a low growing, drought tolerant seed mix last fall (right) received no supplemental water from September through now – which means I have to reseed and try again this year to get well established before testing it’s drought tolerant capabilities.
The hurriedly built and transplanted strawberry beds are showing the seedlings of 7 different kinds of lettuce and the spinach is nearly 3 inches tall. I inter-planted some salsify in one bed between the strawberries (lettuce at the outer edges) and also planted perennial Welsh onions in the second bed in between the strawberry plants – both the salsify and the Welsh onions are new to me, so will keep you posted on how that whole experiment turns out.
Interested in any of the plants? Here’s the links to the seeds I purchased: