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Underdone Bluefish gave me the day off yesterday -- I was feeling pretty good, biked on two separate errands. But it's making a repeat appearance, with low fever and TMI effects. Not as bad as the other day, though, and I've just taken drugs so I may feel fine pretty soon.

I looked around our little back yard and saw some progress I will want to chart.

garden stuff you can skip )

And now I'm all sweaty, which I think means the drugs are kicking in and the fever is breaking, so perhaps I'll feel more like working.
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2010-05-14_01peonyRoy and I started this lovely day by replacing the whiskey barrel planter out front. We had had the current one for a decade...the bottom had rotted out, as had a couple of the staves, and the metal bands were falling to the ground.

So I pulled up all the iris (ick! aphids in the interstices! there will be no mailing of plants to anyone), and then we removed the soil, installed a new barrel (this time with plastic liner), replaced some of the soil and mixed in new soil, watered and let it sit. I planted one big pansy in the center as a signal that this is a work in progress.

I need to get some chemical warfare stuff to go after any aphids that are living in the soil. I pulled off dead leaves and triple-washed the iris, and will put some back in.

We had the front door propped open as we worked, and the Scamp alternately prowled around the steps and skittered back into the depths of the house. He does not love the internal combustion engine.

The peonies are about done, so last night I snipped one off and floated it in a glass bowl, set it on the piano, and played a couple of Chopin preludes. For years, that had been my definition of being a lady of leisure: "I will play Chopin and arrange peonies in a glass bowl." When the outside petals open up completely the bloom is a good 9" across.

The first oenothera opened today. I think I see obvious buds on the rose campion.

The front pansies were definitely past their prime, so I cut them back. I don't know whether they will come back, but they're masked by volunteer feverfew right now, so it doesn't matter.

Yesterday I set out the parsley seedlings in a big planter and today I planted a variegated basil in the center of them. I also made up a hanging planter with the prostrate rosemary I bought at the Flower Show as well as seedlings of parsley, thyme, and marjoram. I tucked some thyme seedlings here and there in the flowerbeds. I also re-potted my new oak seedlings so it has a little more room for the taproot to go down, and surrounded it with parsley and thyme.

Now I am drinking coffee but not succeeding in staying awake. There may be a nap in my future.
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The wisteria are open, fragrant, and visited by flies and bees.

The moonflower vine seedlings broke through the ground yesterday. They look funny.

I bought a little solar light at the PathMark for $3.98. Works like a charm -- I think I'll buy a couple more.

It's forecast to be cooler and overcast pretty soon. The weekend should be good for transplanting herbs and other things.

None of the hippeastrum are looking too terribly insulted by the increase in light. In fact, they look pretty happy.

I brought out the nopalxochia yesterday. The bay tree has been out since the weekend. I brought up the basil from the basement a couple days ago and brought down the one from the windowsill today. The sansevieria has been out for a couple weeks and is looking shocky. Its shady corner turns out to be mostly sunny.

The pachysandra may stay in their pot this year, I think, and grow some serious roots. I planted an 'alabama sunset' in the center of the pot to add some additional interest.

I see much gardening in my future this weekend.
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Two peony blossoms are history, another is past its sell-by date, and the third is in full bloom. They didn't last particularly long this year.

and more notes to myself -- read them if you like )
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The first peony flower is getting brown around the edges and will probably drop its petals later today, if I don't cut it off first. I think the plant needs to be repotted in something larger.

The wisteria is just about in full bloom and is attracting bumbling carpenter bees and some fierce smaller bee thing that chases them.

Something has happened to my sense of smell -- neither the peonies nor the wisteria smell especially pleasant. There's a something they have that's common to petroleum products and I am noticing it more this year. Perhaps next year they will all smell better.

Last evening I moved some plantlets that are prone to self-sowing and nestled them in around the hostas. That would be rose campion and feverfew, as threatened. I also pulled up the couple of puny Martian Invader daylilies that never flourished in the Wisteria Pit, and put them where they'll get more sun and (I think) less competition.

On the windowsills, my seedling basil are just starting to put out their first true leaves. In a couple days I think they'll be far enough along to get a shot of Miracle Gro. There are about a half-dozen rooted coleus cuttings that I might as well pot up. Perhaps they'll go in the window boxes after all. Plus somewhere between a half dozen and a dozen looking glass begonias.

My friend Ann is returning a lilac to me some time this weekend. It's pink and not fragrant. Perhaps I'll pass it on to my sister. EDIT: Here's what it looked like in 2002. It's much bigger now:


The Schlumbergera 'madisto' that [ profile] clindau brought me last spring is clearly pot-bound, so I'll upgrade it to a 4" round pot today and hope that it gets pot-bound enough by fall to bloom for me. I took the Nopalxochia outside the other day. It got really bleached out from its time in a sunny window this spring -- lesson learned, and I'll move it next April.

EDIT: I was given some Jobe plant food spikes, so I pushed three in my big 'Looking Glass' begonia today.
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It was a nice day to hack up a big hosta, one that's unlikely to die no matter how badly treated, so we did it.

mostly for me but you can read if you like )
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It's kind of a yucky day -- overcast, humid, good chance of rain. A good time to think about home and hearth.

For the first time in almost a decade, Roy feels comfortable skipping a weekend vacuuming of the house. It looks as clean to us right now as it used to a day or so after vacuuming. The difference a big dog makes.

a bunch of plant stuff )


May. 12th, 2009 08:11 am
lblanchard: (Default)

Originally uploaded by lb_philly.
Going to have some flowers this year....

Edit: O bother. I forgot to start basil seeds! I did it just now.


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