|Yay! These opened on the 17th -- a lovely St. Patrick's Day gift!|
Well, spring is officially here now, even though it has been so warm for the past month that it has felt like spring for some time now. I've been spending some time outside working in the gardens getting a few jobs done, like cutting back last year's foliage and raking out leaves. These jobs always feel like such progress and are satisfying to get done.
Last weekend I also got a start on one of my several spring projects that I have planned for this year. I got three pickup truck loads of leaf compost from the local landfill and put most of it on my new North Border front section -- the one I will plant with flowers mostly transplanted from the old North Border back section (which will be planted with evergreen trees and shrubs for winter interest).
Then I started moving a few plants from the old part to the new. I started with the 24 Allium 'Globemaster' bulbs that I planted in 2014. I know it's better to move them in fall, but the foliage was up and I need them to be out of the back section by mid-April, when we need to spray the numerous perennial weeds there like Creeping Charlie (ground ivy) and then plant the trees and shrubs before it gets hot.
(While I was working outside last Saturday, it actually started to snow, first tiny sleet and then big, floppy flakes. It became quite cold and unpleasant, and I was really wet and muddy and chilled by the time I was done moving all 24 alliums. But the snow was gone by noon the next day. I guess in March we take what we get, weatherwise, and don't complain.)
|The new North Border: I put a layer of compost on the new front curvy bed that I removed the grass from last year and had my husband till up, and it was good to go. I started transplanting perennials and bulbs from the back section. Still many to go.|
I also got started on moving some of the other perennials that are growing in the back section: achillea, phlox, peonies, mums, Shasta daisies and others. And I also moved about 50 Asiatic and Orienpet lily bulbs, marked with sticks where I planted them (again, I know this is better done in fall, but needs must).
There are so many plants in this large border that it will probably take weeks to move them all -- which is why it's good to get started as early as possible. I had trouble identifying everything, since I apparently didn't make a map of what was growing there, and it can be hard to identify plants when their leaves are tiny and only an inch out of the ground. We'll see how things turn out as the summer approaches...
There are a few other projects I'm hoping to do this year. Here's a short overview:
|The Peony Border: I'm planning to slightly enlarge this border that is right next to the North Border. I made it smaller last year by grassing over the back part that can be seen tilled up and seeded in this photo from last May. I plan to remove some grass in a curved area at the bottom of this photo, and plant it with irises that I will divide from other beds, as well as alliums, poppies and other mid-spring perennials and bulbs that I will add this spring and fall. I want this to be a May-blooming border, perhaps with a few lilies for summer time. I'm inspired by photos of the Schreiner's Iris Gardens, with their crescendo of irises and other May-blooming companion plants.|
|The north side of our house: I'm trying to figure out what to do to make the back side of our house less unattractive. I'll post more about this problem in my next post.|
Anyway, these are the projects I'm thinking about these days as we enjoy warmer days. The last few days have been chilly and rainy, and last night we had a heavy frost, down to the low 20s -- the daffodils in the first photo are looking a bit droopy, but I hope they will recover and that our other tiny flowers will be OK too. The next several days are predicted to be warmer, so maybe I will get a bit more time in the gardens working on these projects.
I trust you are full of ideas for changes in your own gardens -- we gardeners aren't happy unless we're always planning for an even more beautiful future (which is why gardeners are happier than average folk, and why I love gardening, which is full of hope). Thanks for reading! -Beth