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Wow, I can't believe it has been almost a month since I last wrote a blog entry. I wanted to slow down with my yard work and I have. I did spend some time cleaning up my small front yard last month. It was covered with weeds and roots. I filled 6 large black bags with stuff I pulled up. I'm planning flower beds for that area so I got a good start cleaning all that up.
This past weekend I spent some time using up some more of my concrete pavers. I put some more pavers at the bottom of the front steps to make a bigger walkway to the steps from the driveway and I also put four pavers down by the back steps for the BBQ grill. I still have 10 pavers left that I don't know what to do with. I can't believe I have placed over 100 pavers all around the house in different areas.
I found a wasp's nest under the heat pump unit outside that I had to spray last night. I hate wasps. I'm going to spray it again tonight just to make sure they are gone or dead.
The last couple of days I have been shopping on the internet for some decent boots to wear in the garden. My sneakers just aren't doing the job. There wasn't as big a selection as I had hoped there would be but I finally settled on a pair I found at Gemplers that should do nicely. They are Northern brand and they were only $27 (which beats the $90 Wellies that are advertised at some stores). I can't wait to get them.
Happy Gardening Everyone!!
I know this isn't exactly gardening but it is a project that I did to enhance my outdoor living space. I started placing pavers under the trees in my back yard to make a seating area in the shade on June 14th and I just finished the project today. It took a lot longer than I thought it would, everything does when there is only one person working on it. I had to do most of the work first thing in the morning to avoid the hot sun. I would work between an hour and two hours getting as many pavers placed as I could in that time. I took a few days off from the project and I had to work that last week so I couldn't finish it until this morning. I put pictures in a new photo album on my page if you want to check it out. I think it looks pretty good for an amatuer.
To keep with the gardening theme I planted some Nile Lillies and Day Lillies yesterday that a friend gave me after she divided her plants. I didn't take any pictures of those plants.
I had some leftover yard waste and construction trash in the yard that my daughter and her husband were going to clean up on Saturday. I met them last night to attend two functions, one was a campaign kick-off for my boss' school board run and another was a gala to promote green living by a group called Sustainable Tallahassee. While we were talking I told my son-in-law that I finally got a compost bin and he said, yeah, he saw it. I was surprised that he had been out to the house. Well, he came out and took the trash, yard waste and mowed the weeds, blew the leaves off the driveway and trimmed the grass around the fence. My yard doesn't have much grass growing now that the rye is dying but it looks 100% better since he has been here. I am so happy that the yard is spruced up for my open house that I am having in a couple of weeks. What a nice surprise. With the trash gone I can really get a good sense of what I want to do with the rest of the back yard (there will definitely be daylillies) and along the fence on the sunny side. I am so excited.
It's raining today. Hurrah!!! I am so happy. That makes two rainstorms in two weeks. I don't even care that it is raining on my day off. I'm off now to balance my checkbook and get ready to do some cleaning. I am having my pavers delivered today. Another good thing. Happy Gardening everyone. I hope you all are getting the rain you need as well.
I finally got a compost bin. I have been wanting one and tried to get one through a city program but that didn't work out. So I ordered a bin from a place on the internet and I just got it yesterday. I will put my first contributions in the bin tonight. I am so excited about reducing my trash and using it in my garden. This particular bin also creates compost tea for liquid fertilizer, so I feel like I'm getting a two for one.
Last night I only had the energy to water, set up my compost bin (that took all of 10 minutes) and make a list of things to do this weekend. I have two small tree stumps that I want to take my ax to. I also have some weeding to do around two sides of the house. I hope it rains today so I don't have to water again tonight and that will make the weeding easier to do. I have to make a mulch run (or two) tomorrow night so I'm ready to work on that on Friday. The pine straw in the lorepetalum bed on the side of the house is deteriorated and I want to place some pretty cypress mulch there to match the cypress mulch I put in the back yard.
It started last Thursday evening. I had someone come out and pick up all the leftover lumber from the fence and deck projects. The gentleman was building a tree house for his sons. I was very glad to get rid of it and he was glad to take it. Now my yard doesn't look like a construction zone and I had fun sprucing it up.
We had rain here Friday, finally. It rained part of the morning and most of the afternoon. It stopped around 3:30 p.m. and I was able to go out and do some planting. I put two butterfly bushes and my new confederate jasmine with its own trellis in the ground. I spruced up the area around my prickly pears and agave and placed some of the mexican beach stones I bought at Lowes around them. Earlier in the day I placed an order for 100, 20" stepping stones to do some paths and a seating area under the trees in my back yard. They will be delivered this Friday.
On Saturday, I did my supply shopping for my Sunday BBQ to thank my fence and deck builders. I put my new Rose of Sharon in the ground in the front yard. It will be the centerpiece of the spiral planting beds and path around the front yard. I will start clearing the ground for that in the fall and amend the soil over the winter. I hope to be ready to plant by spring. I also put new cypress mulch around the back shrubs and knock out roses. The pine straw placed in November was gone. I trimmed up the overgrown grass where the leftover lumber pile was and cut down some other weeds along the driveway.
Sunday we had a nice BBQ with lchicken breasts covered in olive oil and garlic cooked on the grill. An easy recipe that always turns out great. I added a salad, some yummy vidalia onion cornbread (a Paula Deen recipe) and a green bean casserole. The key lime/mango pie that my daughter brought went uneaten. It was a very successful meal. It was nice to sit on my deck and look over my hard work in the yard. We watched a beautiful red-headed wood pecker at the bird feeders and talked about ordering some lady bugs.
Next weekend will be another busy one. I plan on sprucing up the lorepetalum bed on the side of the house. I want to add new cypress mulch to that bed as well as work on my stepping stone paths. My daughter and her husband will be coming over to remove the last of the junk left over from the yard clean up. There are two old pallets from the cement delivery, lots of leaves, roots and so much stucco left over from the skirting installation I swear the installer could have placed a sidewalk from the front of the house to the street. It took me four weekends to clean up all that stucco. It was everywhere. I'm just glad I will never have to do that again.
I'm having a blast playing in my new yard. I promise to take more pictures in a couple of weeks to show some of my work off.
I had a great day yesterday. I spent it doing fun local things. I went to the blood bank and donated. Then I met my daughter at one of our local museums. It is the Goodwood Plantation. I had not been there in about 16 years and I wanted to see what kind of progress was made in the restoration of the home and grounds. It is a smallish plantation house close to mid-town with 16 acres of grounds which have rose gardens, guest cottages, carriage house, reflecting pool, and tennis courts. The last owner established a corporation where the house would be open to the public but would own itself. The house was built in the 1840s and 5 families have owned it since then. The house was in pretty bad shape when the last owner passed away in 1990 and it has been a ongoing project to restore the grounds and home to period splendor. I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised by the wonderful tour of the home with lots of interesting facts. I had been there many years ago with my boss to notarize some paperwork for the last owner and only saw a dark parlor in the front of the home. It was pretty spooky. After the tour, my daughter and I took a long stroll over the grounds to check out the rose gardens, vegetable gardens and reflecting pool. I put the pictures in one of my photo albums. I didn't take enough pictures, but I will be going back in a few months to add to my photo album.
After the museum we had lunch at a local restaurant, went shopping at twolocal nurseries (I bought two butterfly bushes, one althea, one lavender plant, and one spearmint plant) and went to fundraiser at the local animal shelter to taste wine and see local artists. The weather was sunny and sometimes too hot to be outside, but it was all worth it. A great way to start the Mother's Day weekend.
April 30, 2008.
I was coming in from watering the plants last night and my favorite wild rabbit was in the yard and I spooked her as I was going toward the back steps to the door. She stopped in the middle of the yard and watched me. I apologized to her very softly and made my way up the steps. I stopped to look down at the place where she had come from because I had recently put down some newspaper and dirt to smother the grass in that area and I wondered why she would go to a dirt area when she had been eating the winter rye grass that was growing all over the yard. I saw some squirming little bodies, it looked like four, but it could have been two, baby bunnies. I quickly went into the house and told the cats (they are indoor cats so they don't really care). I can't believe she picked my yard to have her babies in. I hope they all survive.
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