Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Garden Update

May 2nd - May 9th
I only had a few hours in the garden Friday due to appointments in the morning.  I did finish cleaning and covering the veggie garden area.  I also had an area where the roses and peonies will create a border that needed covering.
Working this weekend.  So I hope to be back in the garden Monday or Tuesday.  I have a little more that half a garden left to clean up.
Saw some peonies, sedum, daisies and Siberian irises starting to pop through.  Blueberries are starting to bud as well.  The lilacs look like they will have many blooms this year.  When they are finished blooming there will be some serious pruning to be done.
 Monday morning I was at it again.  Cleared some more space and even found an iris.  I also noticed in the back field my lupine are starting to spread out.  Can't wait to see what colors come up.  Blackflies are coming out too so I need to order some Skin So Soft from Avon.  This stuff works like a dream!   I spray myself all good and I'm good all day!  Great stuff it is!

Tuesday I didn't get much done because my hands were quite sore.  I have some arthritis in my hands and when I over do it they get sore.

I did notice my coneflowers, blue flax, delphiniums, sea holly,  black eyed susan Irish spring, lady's mantle and yarrow are all working their way back.
Rudbeckia hirta "Irish Spring" 
Black Eyed Susan Irish Spring
May 10th - 14th
Things are moving a little slower than I anticipated.  But I did order some mulch which I'm expecting on Wednesday.

As I had mentioned earlier that I think this year it will be mostly prep work and next year will be the year for some real planting.

Well I didn't get any forsythia blooms which was a little disappointing.  I'm also very close to losing my Redbud and 2 Dogwoods.  I will be mulching them as soon as I get my mulch and provide them with a boost of composted manure to help out along with a good drink of water.  I may not have any peaches this year either.  We had a really harsh winter as did most of us and I think that took quite a toll on some of my newer plants. 

There is some good news though.  I thought for sure I would lose my roses, but they are coming back nicely!!  They are Floribunda roses which are a bit hardier than Hybrid Teas.  One is Julia Child Floribunda and the other is Angel Face Floribunda
Today I managed to plant 3 Brandywine Viburnums.  They didn't get into the ground last year, because I bought them late in the season and when I finally had time I thought it was too risky, although it was risky leaving them in the pots over the winter.  I did keep them outside very close to the house on the west side.  They haven't had any kind of budding action yet, but I did check to see if there was still green in the stems and there is.  So I'm hopeful.  I gave them a healthy dose of composted manure and water.  Tomorrow when the mulch arrives they will be covered with that.
I also cleaned up my peony garden and added some supports.  Mostly in case of rain so they won't flatten out.  I love my peonies and I will be the first to tell you I'm terrible at deadheading.  So in the spring I have many new peonies although I have learned they don't resemble there parents at all.  I've got to learn to deadhead!  I will be adding mulch to them tomorrow too.
Some other interesting garden friends I've been seeing the past couple of weeks are just today in fact I saw a gardener snake...not poisonous, but just the same I'll stay away.  In fact an interesting little story about our snake and a mourning dove (male).  The snake was creeping near the bird feeder and the dove spotted it and started flaring up his wings as a way to make himself look bigger to the snake.  Although I don't think the dove has anything to worry about as he as far too big for the small snake (12").  It was just interesting to see.
Also visiting were many Red Winged Blackbirds, Rose Breasted Grosbeaks, Sparrows, Goldfinches, House Finches, Hairy Woodpeckers, Grackles and of course our regular Red Squirrels.  The Tree Swallows are taking up residency at the birdhouses I have in the garden.  And on the front porch our Eastern Phoebe has returned to her nest and has 5 eggs.
Garden Quote.........
In my garden there is a large place for sentiment. My garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams. The thoughts grow as freely as the flowers, and the dreams are as beautiful.  
                                  ~Abram L. Urban
I'll be back in a few weeks with another update and hopefully some photos to show my progress. 
Until then Happy Gardening.

Thursday, May 1, 2014


Welcome to My Garden Journal! 
A little bit about me.  I'm a avid photographer who particularly enjoys photographing flowers, but I also photograph whatever catches my eye.  I've always had great fun being in the garden, but I have failed many times in the design aspect of it.  After 10 years of trying different designs and planting many, many plants.  I think I've finally found a design plan that will make me happy. 
Why you say did it take me so long.  Well my photography took a lot of my time and after several years of trying to make it a full time job, it didn't work out and I needed to get a so called real job to help with the bills.  Well that real job has really taken me to the next level of my gardening.  I'm working at the wonderful garden center at Home Depot.  It's so much fun to educate my customers and help them with their gardening needs.  After being there a year now and learning so much, I've also come to realize that since folks are looking to me for advice that I had better be prepared to give them the right advice.  I've always been one to educate myself and do projects on my own so I can educate my customers at what ever job I'm at.  So with the help of my job, some magazines and Pinterest.  I was able to create a design that I really hope will work out.
In my new garden design there will be a vegetable garden, blueberries, butterfly and hummingbird, sunflower, peony and rose garden.  Living in Maine the rose garden will be the most challenging, but if I do it right I should be able to have roses for many years to come.  Sounds like a lot and quite frankly it is, but I'm determined to have the garden I want with as little maintenance as possible. 
The design of the entire garden reminds me of a church window. 

I know it's kinda hard to tell with this photo and there still is a lot of cleaning to be done.  Unfortunately Spring isn't getting here quite so quickly this year.  Still in the 50's when is should be in the 60's.  But while waiting and in between rain drops I can clean and prep the garden.
This year for the most part is prepping.  Being I'm maintaining this garden alone and can't get the equipment I need to help along, I'm using some methods that have worked for me in the past.  And that is the black plastic that you see in the photo.  It will slowly kill off the grass and weeds.  And as time allows I will be digging up each section.  Mostly the sections towards the top of the photo.
Other interesting items I will be adding to this garden will be several arbors made of old wooden doors, garden features using old chairs, wash tubs and milk cans.  I currently have 3 birdhouses which have been in use for about 3 years now.  I will be adding a bird bath, a water puddle for the butterflies and hummingbird and bird feeders.
Every week I will keep you up to date on my progress.  It will be a slow and steady progression, but in the end it will look marvelous!
Quote for the week.............
My green thumb came only as a result of the mistakes I made while learning to see things from the plant's point of view.                       ~H. Fred Dale