Thursday, June 4, 2015

Farmer Elizabeth

Can one become an amateur gardener if one hates bugs and being hot?  The jury is still out on that.  I am slowly familiarizing myself with some gardening tasks in our front and back yards, and finding it rather enjoyable (except for said bugs and said heat).  I spent two hours last weekend clipping daffodil stalks, and although the work was satisfying, I concluded that a yard with 5 or 6 daffodils was preferable to a yard with 50. 

I did some general weeding, and then began this year’s war on the Horrible Plant-, Tree-, and Bush-killing Vine that we have been battling each summer since we’ve moved in.  We’ve hacked it thick off trees and windy and snaky off bushes and plants.  It’s evil!  It had almost succeeded in choking a big tree in our backyard, which last summer only put out a few feeble leaves, but after I convinced Sean to attack it with a machete, this year the tree came back to life and is flourishing!  But I keep finding the vine intent on sucking out the lifeforce from the bushes in our side yard.  The problem seems to be that it is hard to spot amongst the real bush branches until the damage has been done.  I didn’t notice it was on our holly bush in the backyard, for example, until last fall when it began to turn red and yellow like proper fall foliage, while the holly stayed dark green.

We’ve also planted a small vegetable garden for the first time.  Sean built a raised garden bed and filled it with mulch and earth, and we planted four rows of veggies.  It’s been a week and now:  

Greenery!  We put up a fence so we wouldn’t merely be creating a vegan buffet for our backyard woodcharlene, although she might find a way past our tricky barricade eventually. 

A month or so ago we planted two Thuja Green Giants to eventually block out our neighbors’ appliance garden.  They are only about a foot high so far, but we have high hopes for the duo whom we have named Hall & Oates.  

And it seems I have more weeding to do....

We have these two tall things sprouting in our backyard.  Any ideas as to what they are?  They are both almost taller than me:

We also have this bush in the backyard which is flowering now and looking pretty.  The picture below is overexposed, but it has nice lacy pink flowers.  I don't know what it is either! 

The new hydrangea we got at the end of last year is doing well.  There was a sale at Lowes and all the plants looked bedraggled and sad, so we rescued one called a pinky winky (Owen thinks it is the long-lost fifth Teletubby) and it is thriving.  I'll show you a picture once it blooms.  Suspense! 


Judith Ross said...

I think the shrub with the (flat?) pink flower clusters is a Spirea.... I will keep my fingers crossed re: the vegetable garden -- such a nice way for a child to learn about where our food comes from. Sometimes they'll even eat their vegetables when they are popped in their mouths straight off the vine.

Anonymous said...

The two 'tall things' with the spiky leaves are some type of yucca plants. They are originally desert plants, but some can make it through cold winters. Once established, they are fairly hardy plants.