Monday, April 30, 2012

The Circle Yard

I have no fancy software for meshing my photos to show you the whole yard, so here are two shots shown as close as I can get them. The Circle Yard is really trying to become a White Garden. I hope it fills in this summer. I am searching out white perennial plants every where I go. The tomato cages are protecting the Arctic Queen clematis. I hope to replace them this month with 7 ft tall columns. I also need to do some serious work in the bed under the big magnolia. It has lots of weeds, the gas meter, tree roots, about one hour of good warm sunlight each day. Sounds like it should be a great success as a lush flower bed right? I am already saving cardboard to start some softer beds. The magnolia tree molt until June so there is not really any reason to start work in there until I am out school.

 Variegated ivy
 Angelonia Serena White

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Trip around the Front Yard

Here is a view of the Front Yard I don't often show. The trees were planted around 1901. They tower over the house and suck all the life - and moisture - out of that yard. I don't think people should park in their front yard. Enough said about that. This photo also shows the table on the porch, we eat out there quite often.
 Around the corner from the picture above is the New Dawn rose. It rained last night so they are heavy and droopy. So sweet though.

 The Guara seem to like their new home near the driveway. I may have to replace the other one, this one gets more sun.

 The gardenia bushes near the front porch are loaded with buds. They smell so good when they get warmed by the sun. That was the whole reason for planting them there.
The lavender is blooming. I still hope it is going to take off.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Sunny Border / Front Porch / Additions to the White Garden

 Sunny Border Late April 2012
 This is the red Knock Out rose that my wife got me in a silent auction.

 This is a close up shot of the pink Knock Out that I love even more than the red.
 We purchased three new mandevilla vines - Giant White -
i didn't pull the old ones this Winter and they did not make it. i sure was sad.
New mandevillas make me happy.

 The Shasta Daisys are ready and waiting for May 1st looks like.
 The Peonies at the end of the border look very healthy.
 Here is the new clematis in the White Garden. Arctic Queen.
It broke my heart but I pruned it back - hard -
info from the web says prune it now while it's growing so it will be fuller and more lush later.
I am patient - I can wait and see.
 Pots near the front steps
 Lavendar Munstead is looking good by the front steps.
 We are trying out some ferns on the front porch.
Asparagus Ferns are the only thing we can leave out in the hot burning sun.
Good Luck to the fern on the table.

Today the town had a town-wide yard sale and the local garden clubs had plant sales.
i found several things for the White Garden. The plant below is Angelonia Serena White.
It is supposed to like the heat and light and get to be about 2 feet tall and wide.

 Bonnie Plants Cabbage from school. It looks good for the white garden.
Phlox David was a pass along from the nice garden club lady. I had seen the phlox as we walked around the yard sale on the Square here in town. By the time we got back around they were gone, and when the lady figured out what I had wanted she offered to let me come to her house and she would give a plant to divide.

Thanks for stopping. David 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Finished border at Mama's House - technical problems

     I forgot my camera so I had to use my phone to take these photos. Now I can't figure out how to flip them so they look right.
First photo shows slight burm formed from ten bags of topsoil.
 Second photo shows newspaper and pinestraw layers going in.
 Final photo shows the finished product and gives you a better sense of how big this bed is.
     Right now I envision some red Knock-Out Roses near the steps. I am thinking an upright boxwood at the corner of the steps and the house. I have several Pink Perfection Camelias I would like to put out near the curve of the bed to be a large accent on the corners of the house. They get pretty big so I don't want to put them too close to the house. 
     I am not going to be planting anything now because I would not be able to keep anything alive long distance through the hot Summer months. Come Fall I will start thinking about a planting plan again.
     Once school lets out I will be starting all over again on the other side of the steps. It will not be easy, but it is going to be a thinner border so not as hard as this bed ended up being. (I hope)
     Meanwhile back here at Pinewood Cottage this is Spring Break for us. Today we attacked the bamboo invading the back and side yard from the neighbor's yard. It was a cool morning and we got every bit of it we could.
Thanks for stopping by and reading.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

New Project at my Mama's House

This is the house where I grew up, now called Mama's house. My Daddy died 11 years ago. Before he died he cut down all the 40 year old boxwoods across the front of the house. He planted tiny little azaleas, which got no care and promptly died.
 This is what is left out front. I am starting to get the house ready to sell. So a little curb appeal is defintely in order, don't you think?
Here's the right hand side.
So I decided it was time to start some beds.
I've been saving large cardboard boxes at school all Winter long. I used the garden hose (hose pipe ya'll) and formed a pleasing curve, but a curve that's also easy to cut around with a lawn mower. This bed is bigger than it looks, short side is 8 feet wide and the long side is maybe 16 feet to the curve.
It took a lot of cardboard. It was amazing how much I saved, and how fast it was used up.
Here's the final shape. I think I like it.
 Next I covered all the cardboard with a heavy layer of course sand.
The last step I could get done Saturday was to cover everything with a thick layer of top soil. Monday we are going back up. (it's about an hour away from us here)
This is the finished bed - without its newspaper layers, more topsoil, and the finishing touch of pinestraw. I should be good and sore Monday night.
Here is a picture of a rose from the backyard at Mama's house. Daddy had planted a row of red climbing roses across the back line of the yard. his goal was to have a blooming row of roses just like the school we all went to. The school was built in the 1930's by the CCC I think and did have beautiful roses all along the fence at the front of the school yard. I really can't believe they still keep going, I have done nothing to help them along. It makes me happy to think that these are Daddy's roses.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A quick look at the Back Yard

Here is a view from the Water Garden looking back up at the porch.
The Camelias are still going strong. Below is a close up.

 The middle of the back yard features the red maple and its bed.
 On the table just outside the basement door
we have the ladies in waiting.
Foxtail fern, asparagus fern, and my new Winter Daphne 
that's waiting for Spring Break so I can chose the perfect place for it.
I'm thinking part sunny part shade. Any suggestions on planting a Winter Daphne?
This borders time is marked - I'm 47 - it will not see me at age 50 - 
one of us has got to go! It ain't gonna be me neither!

That bamboo that you see is from my neighbor's yard. I have been begging him for several years to keep it beat back. He just says "feel free to come over and cut it back." So now I have it coming up in the hedge row, and in the Middle Back Yard. Uhh! At least it only grows for one month then just sits the other 11 months of the year.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Sunny Border - April 3, 2012

Everything is coming back great, including the weeds.
I spend about thirty minutes each day pulling as many weeds as I can.
 The Italian Cypress is still growing like Jack's Bean Stalk.
It may have to go, but I love it. The mandevilla vines did not make it through the Winter.
I am going to look for something light - maybe white, yellow, or lavender toned.
This is the first Knock Out rose I got. It was my birthday gift one year.
My wife got it in a silent auction at the local Relay for Life Event.
I did not prune it back this year, we will have to watch it and see how it goes.
I am a pruner.

Monday, April 2, 2012

A trip around the front yard

 Italian Arum
 Wood Fern
 Hosta - June
it's supposed to be really big when it's grown
 Guara - coming back strong
 Camelia japonica - man sized
yes I will be air layering that tall branch at the top
 It did have one little short lived bloom
next year I am more hopeful
 The peonies are awakening -
The largest one to the right is a pink the small one to the far left is red
and the one at the top of the bed is within the the white garden so it is pure white.
 Here is the matching bed to the right of the wall.
The tomato cage holds the white Clematis vine which is awaiting
some kind of support structure, either purchased or built. any suggestions?
 On the other side of the front porch this wall is near the driveway.
New Dawn roses and boxwood surround the wall fountain.
 Sunny Knock Out roses are back!
This is a big deal for me -
NOTHING will grow and thrive in this little
strip of border that is so close to the tree and its roots.
 This is not a great photo but the plants look great
and already have many flower buds all over them.
Here is the view looking from the sidewalk back into the yard.
I am thinking about moving the Guara to this side of the yard.
It doesn't mind being dry and seems to love the heat,
and i have lots of dry and lots of heat for them over here -
they should be happy.