Monday, May 14, 2012

More Flower Bed Progress

I had an amazing day in the yard yesterday!  The weather was so comfortable for mid-May that I had to pinch myself and wonder if I was really in Dallas...

I finished digging up the sod on the left half of the front yard, and gave a sidewalk full of tidy squares of beautiful sod to a neighbor in need.  I had no expectations of finishing the left side, but I surprised myself.  I think it was due to easier digging because of our recent rains, and the moderate temperatures.  I even got my tiller out and tilled the bed when I was done!  I was pleased to realize that with some redistribution of the soils in the bed, that I really am not short that much volume.  I think I can just amend the soil a bit and have plenty of depth for planting.  I will need quite a bit of mulch, though.

Ta-da!  (Look, my little pecan tree is still alive under it's wire protection!)

I still need to give the existing shrubs some love - thin out the trunks down below the canopy (can shrubs have a canopy, or is that just trees?  Anyway, I need to prune them to show their legs.  Call that what you want....)

I'm starting the fun part now - thinking about what plants I can relocate to this bed!  This side of the front yard is the sunny side.  The right hand side is mostly shade.  I know I have a couple of things in the backyard that are not getting enough sun, and I'll move those.  And I have marigold seeds remaining from the marigold seed trials I am participating in - those will be planted.  I also have some onion sets from a neighbor that I may try - although it might be too late for those... I also have seeds that I've harvested from my cosmos and my calendula - certainly I will have room for more of those. 

I volunteered at The Butterfly Plant Sale at Texas Discovery Gardens this past weekend.  I forced myself to leave my debit card in my car to reduce temptation, and I managed to not buy a single thing - astonishing.  My beds weren't ready, so I used that to rationalize my good behavior.  However.... all of the inventory didn't sell, and we are having a follow up sale this Saturday!  And gee... now my front bed IS ready...  tee hee ha ha.  So I'll likely pick up a few things there.  I mean, prices will be reduced, and, well... look at that beautiful bed!  It will be good to let the soil rest for a week before planting, too...

I also plan to flip through some of my garden books and figure out some plants that will bloom or have pretty foliage throughout the year - not just in the summer - so that my entire bed doesn't die back in the Winter.  I've never made those considerations before, so that will be new territory (pun intended) for me.  I'd love any suggestions you may have.  I'm in Zone 8.  And I have pretty decent soil...

I will start digging up the right hand side this week.  It will be easier than the left side was for a variety of reasons:  (a)  It's a smaller area.  (b) I don't have to get on my hands and knees under existing shrubs to be able to reach all of the grass.  (c)  Boy, do I have the technique down to a science!

Mother's Day Garden Bouquet

I hope everyone had a relaxing Mother's Day yesterday - even if you aren't a mother!  My mother lives across the country, so I wasn't able to see her.  I did pick some flowers from my garden for a special person in my life, though, and put them into an arrangement:

It includes Blue Spires Sage (a salvia), Bachelor Buttons, Black Eyed Susans, Lavender, Bog Sage, and Brazilian Verbena.  I'm not sure which was more fun - choosing and harvesting the flowers, or delivering the finished bouquet! 

2012 Manifesto statement #21:  Grow flowers and give them away.