Sunday, May 17, 2009

Hot One Today

Whew! It was too hot yesterday afternoon to be working in the garden. The early morning 40 degrees quickly turned into 70, and without our normal breeze, it became quite uncomfortable. But you know how it goes once you start something, it is difficult to stop in the middle of the process, and being in the garden, well... time simply rushes right by.

Our first effort seemed reasonably easy: the dead ceonothus had been removed from the corner of one of the flower beds and was a perfect spot for planting a maple, one of the 6 inch seedlings we had potted several years ago from among the many offered by its parent and now a compelling 5 foot specimen.

Our winter was unseasonably cold this year and subsequently, with prolonged periods of freezing we lost many well established plants: several of the large hebe, numerous rosemary, a cistus, some caryopterus, many of the ceonothus, a clematis, several azaleas... even the twenty foot Thundercloud plum's foliage is sparse. However, you'll be pleased to know, the weeds were not harmed by the winter... they are all doing splendidly.

Many of the spring blossoms now fade. The petals of the Chinese tree peony fall exhaustively to the soil...

while the Davidia involucrata (dove/handkerchief tree) hangs on.

This ramp up in temperature (forecast 82 today) takes its toll on spring blossoms, not to mention the gardeners. It requires early morning gardening only, lots of water intake, long sleeve shirts, a hat, and a gradual pace.

Isn't he cute? While kneeling and working in the vegetable garden, this little guy noisily emerged from beneath the rocks, did a few push-ups, then swiftly scurried to my side. What a flirt!

Next on my list: water the newly planted vegetable seeds, pot up the euonymous removed when we transplanted the viburnum start from container to flower bed. A final survey found the two beech having already developed aphids, so a fight with water hose is in order, perhaps tomorrow.

A productive day with excellent results, but it was time to go inside. We would soon enjoy friends arriving to share dinner and christen our little tea room. (tea room story to follow)