Saturday, September 18, 2010

Update on the Rye Grass / Sons-Before-The-Fathers

This is where we were last weekend...
but after a week of daily watering and lots of late Summer SC Sunshine here's where we are now.
The trees suck all the moisture out of the ground and the soil is so acid that i cannot grow warm season grass but this annual rye seems to love it and helps the soil - so yeah!

The Sons-Before-The-Fathers
 I also wanted to show you the Fall blooms on the Sons-Before-The-Fathers plant that was the mystery plant earlier this year. Don't be fooled, the foliage you see is some sad old variagated lirope border grass. The flowers have no foliage.
This is the plant that has leaves in the Spring dies back,
 then in the Fall these crocus like flowers appear apparently with no leaves. It is an interesting plant. Not native to the South as I understand but it is common in Maine - where the lady who lived in the house from 1901 - 1946 was from -
so who knows we may have an heirloom pass along.
Have a great weekend!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Aerating the lawns

   The front yard here had ivy covering every inch of it for decades - ivy is evil. It sucks all the life and energy from the soil. One inch under the grass the soil has the consistency of dry cake mix - powdery and dead. I have spent years adding compost and topsoil trying to bring life back to the yard. In the back yard the riding mower, bicycles, scooters all compact and harden the ground.
   I decided it was time to aerate. I rented a pull behind aerator from the local rental center. I was happily surprised to find that it was only $29.00 for a one day rental. From Friday afternoon when school let out until 4 p.m. on Saturday it was mine!
   Round and round, figure eights, wandering wavy lines - i tilled the front yard for at least an hour. I then went to the back yard where i let my eleven year old son help me since the areas are not as tight as they are in the front yard. He was happy to drive around with a "new toy" - and i needed a break from that riding mower seat. Now we are just waiting on some Fall rain to come and renew our yards, and our spirits.

Update on the lawn....
I decided to go ahead and seed the front yard with annual rye seed. i watered it every afternoon - but i could see nothing changing. Yesterday was cloudy all day, then last night we had a really good thunder shower, lots of good soaking rain. This morning I got up and saw the flush of green starting! i can't grow grass under those trees during the Summer but we can have a lush green lawn for the cooler Fall and Winter months. If it's cool I can get it last until May. Can you see the lush green of the grass coming?