feels like we’re weeks behind the usual summer blooms & fruit
st paul mn
july 4, 2014
impossible project color film for 600-type cameras
archive for the ‘garden!’ category
green stuff is coming out of the ground!
i used to have some sort of pine tree in my front yard. it was pretty small & squat when i bought my house, but then all of a sudden it seemed to double in size. i didn’t find it attractive, and the roots were starting to interfere with my water line. so in late summer of 2010 i had my dad cut it down. and then i did nothing with the big bare spot, which is in a nice-sized rectangle (it’s bordered by the front sidewalk, the neighbor’s driveway, and the walkway to my front door).
summer of 2011 rolls around and i still have that bare spot, and there’s a stump in the middle. i think about putting in a rain garden. but i do nothing. i eventually called a nice old guy to came over and grind the stump into wood chips. then i think about reseeding the whole area. or maybe i should put in a perennial garden? it’s south-facing with lots of summer sun. but still, i do nothing, except for cover the entire rectangle in landscape fabric at the end of the summer and decide to wait until next spring to figure out what i’m going to do. my front yard looked so trashy… 6 months of landscape fabric that would break free from its spikes and flap wildly in the wind…
spring of 2012 arrives and i realize i really can’t put this off anymore. so i pull up the landscape fabric during one of the unseasonably warm weeks in march, and then i do nothing. finally, in june i pull the weeds that have come up, and decide that yes, this spot will be a perennial garden. my friend jean dropped off some plants. the local nursery has their 50% off sale (because summer has already been here for 2 months) and i stocked up. and last weekend i finally redeemed the gift certificate for a nursery a friend gave me last year. here’s what i’ve planted:
dwarf coneflower echinacea ‘avalanche’
yarrow achilleea ‘saucy seduction’
black-eyed susan rudbeckia hirta
blazing star liatris spicata
butterfly flower asclepias tuderosa
stonecrop sedum ‘dazzleberry’
pincushion flower scabiosa caucasica
there are some empty spots. i’ll worry about them later. also, i have a pile of cedar edging in the backyard. i bought it 4 weeks ago. i intend to put it in this weekend. but knowing how i tend to put things off for months, i’ll be really surprised if i get it put in before snow falls…
last night i realized the momma and 2 baby robins i spotted last weekend were no longer in the nest, but they did leave an egg behind. it made me a little sad.
this blog and creativity has been a low priority this week. it has made me a little sad, too. i hope to change that starting this weekend.
i didn’t do much over the weekend… i craved a few days free of obligations and chores and travel. i needed to reacquaint myself with my outdoor surroundings, and there were a few surprises:
i discovered a robin’s nest in my backyard, and the eggs have already hatched. there are 2 fuzzy babies! i had been finding robin egg shells in my yard in may, but i didn’t realize the nest was steps from my back door.
a pair of house wrens laid eggs in their 2nd attempt at a nest on a wreath right outside my front door. the last time this pair nested in this spot, the baby birds fell out of the nest onto the concrete. i must get to the nursery and fill a planter with annuals and place it directly under the nest ASAP!
the first echinacea bloom! it’s a little straggly, but it definitely says summer is here!
i didn’t plant much of a garden this spring, but i did want to try growing butternut squash. and look at this beauty i pulled last weekend! it is destined for soup… but not until fall is here (which is only 23 days away?!).
a friend and i took a class at shady acres herb farm years ago, and it was there that i was introduced to lemon verbena. summer is not complete until i have a pot of it on my deck, even though i don’t do a single thing with it, except sniff the leaves.
(i know that makes me sound like a total weirdo.)
a mushroom began to make an appearance in my backyard last week, and i was obsessed with it all weekend as it transformed from a little white bubble in the grass to a giant ‘shroom capable of supporting a caterpillar smoking a hookah. the enormous size… and the randomness of where it grew… i was fascinated.
until i plucked it and tossed it into the compost. (i had some mowing to do.)
gardening is a minimal affair for me this summer: only 3 tomato plants, and i’m trying to grow butternut squash. the blossoms are encouraging, since i was not the most tender gardener when putting it into the ground. i heard a light *snap*, but it appears to be doing just fine for now…
somehow some oregano traveled across the yard into the strawberry patch. i like to picture it packing a suitcase, and making its escape from the herb garden — in the moonlight — to sunnier days with the strawberries on the west side of the yard.
(and that is as good as it gets today. it’s already been a long week!)