Friday, April 22, 2011

A real long day

Thursday was a nice day between storm systems, the exception to the April rule, so I got busy.  My rain guage showed that we got just under 3 inches of rain from Mon eve through Wed morning.  Wed was cloudy and windy but mostly dry, and by Thursday the ground had dried enough to work in the beds.

This spring I’ve been landscaping the front of the house.  Oh the builder landscaped it allright – put down some edging blocks, stuck some plants into the clay and covered it all with landscape fabric.  Everything except the rhodendron had to go.  Some of the hostas and lillies were moved to the beds next to the deck in back last year. The rhododendron really shouldn’t survive in this area but it’s planted on the south side of the house and enough sunlight is trapped in that spot to get it through the winter.  Since it’s about 5’ tall and looks healthy I decided to leave it.  Who knows it may even flower someday.
Two quarter circle beds that I made on either side of the front porch are mostly finished.  I trucked in a yard of compost and mixed it with the clay by shoveling, hoeing and tilling to get what looks like workable soil.  The beds are fronted by two young pin oak trees so even though they face south they’re shaded much of the day.  I know next to nothing about ornamental plants.  I just go to the nursery and read the labels about size, cold tolerance and shade tolerance.  

Last weekend a foundation bed was laid out along the front by cutting a groove with a spade along a string.  Today I set in the edging blocks – what a job.  The only way I can make a nice line of edgers is by trial and error – set a block in the groove, sight it, remove the block, add or remove some dirt, repeat until good enough.  An iterative process that continues until a block is close enough to acceptable appearance and/or my patience wears out.  It’s the kind of job that was not so bad when I was 30 but now that I’m over 60 it’s a little more wearing.
I also planted the potatoes and onions, and set up a trellis for the cucumbers.  But that’s for another blog.  Today I do nothing.   Just too sore.  

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