aithne: (gardening)
Got back out into the garden today; grubbed out the lavender bed in the side yard and the formerly annual bed in the front. I think I'll pop down to Watson's Monday or Tuesday and pick up some more things that might be happy in that bed--I'm thinking azaleas for the partial shade under the pine tree, some more hollyhocks for the spot they seem to like, a few more lavender plants for around the rock, and some low-growing stuff for the front of the bed. Of course, this year I also have a bunch of morning glory (don't worry, not bindweed, the *good* morning glories!) seedlings that will be ready to plant in a couple of weeks. I planted the lavender that I'd bought to fill in some spots in the lavender bed that are looking pretty bare.

As I was out digging in the lavender, I noticed that my Spanish lavender (blooms earlier than French and has big fat blossom heads with purple flags on the ends) was being visited by a whole passel of bees. Encouragingly, unlike the last several years, 95% of the bees were domestic honeybees! I've seen more of our native bees out back, since the Japanese maple by the back door is blooming (the local wasps enjoy those blooms, where are actually too small to get a good photograph of), but in the lavender bed, the honeybees were definitely queen. But that was the most honeybees I've seen in one place in years. I suspect that we have someone in the neighborhood who has a hive, mostly likely on this side of the highway, or else we have a wild hive in the greenbelt. There were too many honeybees there for us to be too far from the hive(s) the bees are from.

I also have a pot that I need to put some annuals in, and I need to make more of a plan for the former garden which has slowly been turning into a herb/perennial garden. The hostas I planted appear to have given up the ghost, so I need to figure out what might like dry shade. There are a bunch more beds that need to be grubbed out (though [livejournal.com profile] hrhwillows has been doing an excellent job, it's kind of a big yard!) which I'll be doing likely Wednesday or Thursday. The willow trees also need to be beaten back again, and it's easier to do it in the spring than the summer. The New Zealand flax is struggling back to life after being almost killed by the cold this past winter, and I need to figure out something to do with the bed it's in while it's getting its act together. (According to this article, the flax will take at least two years to come back to its former prettiness. Must find a decent ground cover, or maybe some more grasses to put around it.)

I also need to figure out what to do about the bed the lilacs are in. It's pretty weedy. Eventually, the lilacs will take care of it by shading everything out, but that's not going to be for another few years. Mulching is possible but impractical (the bed is about 2' wide and about four and a haf feet off the ground, atop a rock wall). I may end up putting landscape fabric down and putting a light layer of mulch over the cloth. Best scenario would be to find some rapidly-spreading ground cover that would choke out the weeds, but the weeds...are horsetail. Horsetail (aka Equisetum is a fantastically successful plant. Even more successful than, say, dandelions.

I'll figure it out. Right now, I am doing photo editing. Mmm, photo editing. :)
aithne: (camera)

alien life form
Originally uploaded by Nareshe.
Wandered around in my backyard and took pictures, including this one of some of the chives that are blossoming. Also in my photostream are pictures of Boone, Greebo, a bumblebee visiting the lavender, and herbs of various kinds.
aithne: (camera)

black hollyhocks
Originally uploaded by Nareshe.
The hollyhocks finally bloomed...and they're black! I had forgotten that I'd picked up black hollyhocks to be the tall backdrop the the annual bed.

whoof.

Jun. 3rd, 2007 10:31 pm
aithne: (lantern)

salvia bud
Originally uploaded by Nareshe.
Gardening today started with a trip to a couple of nurseries to get plants, picking up a bunch of annuals for the annual bed out front, as well as a number of other plants for elsewhere in the garden. The afternoon was spent doing some weeding and a bunch of planting and potting, and I went out and took some pictures when it was all done--click on the picture of the salvia to see more.

It's so nice to get out and play in the dirt, even if I'm pleasantly sore tonight. We had gumbo tonight seasoned with lemon thyme from the herb garden, and I'm slowly but surely getting the kinds of plantings in I've been envisioning.

I had more to post, but I just finished a story and I'm all out of words. I'm going to finish this and get to bed.

fwoosh!

May. 26th, 2007 01:19 pm
aithne: (gardening)
That is the sound a flame weeder makes.

I used the flame weeder, and we'll see in a couple of days whether it was effective on the stuff I used it on; can't really help but be, after all. Then I and the puppy pulled weeds. He mostly ran around with his ball and then tried his hand at pulling weeds and carrying pulled weeds to the yard waste bin (neither of which really worked) and then just hung with me for a while. He'd rather have been inside crashed out on the couch with the people on the couch, but I insisted that there needed to be Outside Time.

You would think that running around with blackberry vines in one's mouth would be a self-limiting behavior. Evidently, if you're a puppy, it's not necessarily.

He's now flopped down on the floor, looking like he's falling asleep. Me, I'm going to take a shower and then try to get a running start on the next Black Angel Crossroads story. Goodness, it's a lovely day out, though.

Twitter?

Apr. 26th, 2007 11:59 am
aithne: (hawaii flower)
Does anyone use Twitter? Do you like it?

I look at it and think it's a lot like the Non Sequitur> room on ISCABBS, back in the days when enforcement of the "it does not follow" rule was a bit lax and I could regularly get together a group of people to go do something by posting there.

And how do you find people to add to your twitter list? There's a lot of information that you don't seem to be able to get without signing up.

Edit: okay, i caved: http://twitter.com/aithne

*****

This morning, I used the last of the coffee I bought in Hawaii. Now I am without whole beans, and I am sad. I can't decide if i'm going to order more coffee from Kauai, or take a trip to Vivace and get some there.

This weekend, I'm going to Raintree Nursery with some friends as a little road trip that may well result in some plant buying. I'm hoping that this is going to be a gardening weekend, with organizing, purchasing, and weeding Saturday, and planting on Sunday morning before gaming.

Yay dirt!
aithne: (Default)

cherry blossom time
Originally uploaded by Nareshe.
...as attested to by the pictures I just posted.

I went out for a run. Outside! Hooray! Happy Kris!
aithne: (lantern)

Clusiana 'Lady Jane'
Originally uploaded by Nareshe.
The work I did this past fall putting in a bunch of bulbs is paying off, in spades. The crocuses have been lovely for the past couple of weeks, and they've literally faded overnight to be replaced by adorable, tiny little specie tulips. (Clusiana 'Lady Jane', pictured here.) The Red Cubed bed is going great guns, though the other mix I planted out front looks like it's going to have more of the small white tulips than anything else.

Seattle has been washed with rain, our annual spring blessing making puddles in the streets. Soon, I think, we might get some actual spring weather. I am so darned ready!
aithne: (Default)
I got up early this morning to go to Watson's Greenhouse down in Puyallup, since I'd been told it was fabulous. And it was. A very, very dangerous place for a Kris. I didn't buy the fifty-dollar hydrangea that I wanted, but I did buy two others, as well as larkspur, more lavender, and a few other things. Carpinito Brothers yeilded carnations and another hydrangea. I also stopped at the Puyallup Farmer's Market, which was quite nice; nobody selling local meats, but a good selection of everything else. (I didn't have any cash with me, so I was browsing instead of buying.)

Came home and proceeded to put in all of the plants I bought. I love our trees, but their surface roots I could really do without. By the time I was finished, I was quite literally dirt from head to toes, courtesy a number of roots that sprayed dirt all over the place when I pulled them up. The lavender bed is finished for the year (including soaker hose for better watering), I think i may have everything in the cutting garden I'll grow this year, and I now have an experiment running to see if petunias will survive our garden window.

It's really hot here, but for some reason I honestly didn't notice all that much while I was working. I always handle heat a lot better than I think I will; probably a consequence of growing up in California. The sun came out and it's feeling a lot less muggy than it was, which is nice.

I am tired and sore and now it is time to rest for a bit and wait for it to get cooler. Perhaps a nap is in order in the coolest place in the house, currently the living room.
aithne: (Default)
After this afternoon's wardrobe malfunction, I moped and watched TV for a little bit, then decided to do something productive with my day.

Hmmm, what to do, what to do? I know! Garden!

I hied myself to two nurseries, discovered that it's too late to buy either lilacs or hydrangeas, but did find some ground cover, a ceanothus for under the pictture window (it should get to only about 3 feet tall, so no obscuring the window, yay!), a coule of interesting basils on sale, rosemary, and lavender. My vision for the side bed is a lavender bed, since lavender's drought-tolerant and heat-tolerant, it should like that spot just fine. And I like lavender, a lot.

And...i now have a vision for the backyard, plant-wise. Not a clue if I'll be able to make it happen, but we'll see. (Let's just say that it may well involve some thornless climbing roses.)

Anyway, all of the plants but one are planted, and I need to find an actual pot for that one, since it'll need to be brought inside over the winter. I did a couple of other needed outside-y things, like putting the canopy on the swing. Then, once it cools down a little, I'll give the kitchen a good cleaning and the rest of the house a picking-up, do my laundry, and maybe watch a DVD and veg a bit or write some. ah, yes, my exciting life. :)

Edit: Aww, guess what Esme brought me? A garter snake! Just what I always wanted! Alive, too.

(I actually am very fond of snakes, and spent a minute petting this one before setting it free. I keep thinking about keeping one f the ones Esme and Greebo bring back, but then I realize I live with a South African and that is Just Not Happening.)

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