Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary....

How does your garden grow? Well I'm no Mary and my garden is bushy at best! Ok, I've really sucked up my pride and I'll show you pics of the garden projects under way. Last year I totally gave up on my gardens because the weeds and bugs were taking over. I had really no energy to battle either the heat or the weeds. The years of neglect have quickly taken their toll. This is me baring my gardening soul.

So this year the plan is for the main bed: see pictures below, to take out the full sun perennials and find them a new bed. Lay down the weed barrier and put in new top soil from the mountain of dirt that has been placed in the back yard. (see before pic...I'm so ashamed). All the garden beds will be walled off with a row of bricks to keep soil in and dogs/kids out. You can see here how the weeds and grass have taken over. In this bed there is a lilac tree, asian lilac tree, a french lilac tree, butterfly bush and an ornamental mulberry tree. Allin the corner is a huge patch of shasta daisies and they are so content there. I'll be yanking them out to transplant. Lavender, bee balm and some miscellaneous ground cover and tiny shrubs. You'd never know it because of the grass, clover and choking vine.The fountain had a beautiful cutting bed see before picture. Then it got hit with grubs and some other pestilence and the daisies died off completely. As did the heather. I put in to replace the defunct daisies, four "torch" coreopsis plants and now two continue to come back but the grubs took out the other two. I've got thrift growing happily in there now but that's just not cutting it. Because this is a full sun patch. I've decided that the thrift and coreopsis can stay but the small ground cover must come out. I'll try another two more coreopsis plants since husband is spraying for grubs this year. Then I'll fill the rest in with some varied greenery. If I want more show I'll add in a few annuals but for the better part I just want something simple that will fill itself in, year-after-year. Befores (two years ago) and now. degenerated *cries* This year it's getting a stone/brick wall. The flimsy wire fence was to keep the dogs out.This is what is left this year. Sadly, the grass has grown back over the circle. Maybe three plants survived the grubs. It's getting a total face lift this year.
Now this area is a disaster. This patch was mainly a catch all for the perennials that were gifted to me where they required some degree of shade, at least some of them did. There is the slip of lilac shoot that a lady friend of mine gave me. I'm so amazed that it actually took root. Now it's too tiny to be much of anything so I'll put in another lilac tree to round it out, The rest will be hostas and shade loving flowers and herbs.Front of the deck: This is where the new bed will go. I was thinking of some herbs in here a long with some ornamental grass, and perhaps a flowering jasmine or weigela. The cedars will go in there. Do you know we've had these cedars for two years now and have never gotten around to planting them! Watch them die as soon as they are in the ground. It would be my luck! You can tell that the kids have been here. Look at all the toys they've decided to store on my fire pit.
Now on to the pyramid planter: I was trying to explain this to Jo and Misty today but it wasn't coming across in translation. I believe because I've missed the cooler seed sowing season I'll have to content myself this year with whatever vegetable/fruit plants I can find at the various garden centers. There are some things like beans and radishes that can be sown now and will mature before the end of August. There will be a good deal of herbs in that garden and I'll put in some annuals like marigolds and a few piss off plants to keep the dogs and cats out. I do know that the top tier will be home to many alpine strawberry plants! Yum! I'm considering staining or painting the boxes with a non-toxic paint just to pretty it up a little. Can you believe that it took 2 1/2 yards of triple mix to fill this sucker!Along that stretch of fence I'll be hanging my tomato planters so that they can enjoy all that direct sun. I'm hoping to get those planters made this weekend but I'm having trouble laying my hands on the 2ltr pop bottles. If any of you out there have a bunch of these bottles I'll happily drive around to your places and collect them.

The privacy wall will get a long planter at it's base for the clematis and some annuals to shade their roots. They will climb the privacy wall and in the planters there will be basil, basil and more basil. How can you tell I love basil? I plan to dehydrate it and store it in tiny bottles for the winter.Then we'll put in some shrubs along the back fence to try and keep Finnigan from chewing his way through to get the dog on the other side. The lattice was put there to keep him from chewing the fence but he's chewing his way through the lattice! That dog seriously need Prozac. Big flowering shrubs. Weiglia and some spira should just about do the trick.

My big pile of extra dirt for the various beds and planters. In this spot eventually there will be a shed. Husband's been dreaming of one since we moved in. Perhaps this will be the year we splurg. If he puts one in, I'm going to ask him to build me a cold frame so that I can do some early seeds. We'll many possibilities and now I've finally got the time and energy to tackle these projects.


  1. it looks very cool, i wish i had that same gumption - the kids will love it! tell me more about these upside down tomatoes?!

  2. Misty, Sent you an email this morning with a link to a DIY planters. I'm actually going to be using discarded plastic hanging planters (thanks to my neighbour) boring a hole in the bottom then once filled topping off with some companion herbs. I've got 32 tomato plants to do. Yikes! So that's 32 chances to "F" up *snort*