Saturday, April 20, 2013

To-do List, Revisited

This was the scene from our deck a week ago, just after I finished the epic weeding project that was to usher in a "big dig" of plants going to Lily Auction winners.

Alas, only four plants made it into the mail on Monday and then we were beset by rain, hard rain, driving rain, all sorts of rain, vertical, horizontal, leaky, indoorbucketinducing rain, and the entire property became a scene of squish.

This is a view of my front lawn, known as "Swamplandia!" now.  All it lacks is a heard of water buffalo.

It is marshland all the way to the dark green "fescue garden" we put in last fall.  There's no way to deal with this lowland except love it for what it is and get on with what needs to be done.

Every day's mail brings more new daylilies, and they are parked in buckets of water until I complete the digging and shipping for each week.  This weekend I must do last weekend's work.  All gardeners and farmers know this story of the ever-growing to-do list.

Just to the right of this scene as I walk out of the garage is the last untended section of car-park garden.

Kathy planted a beautiful collection of sedums there, and last year's stalks need to be cleaned out.

A blue spruce bush and a golden variety of juniper (I think) both suffered greatly last summer.  I plan to trim the dead wood away and shape what emerges alive.  In the case of the spruce, I know I'll debate whether to toss it and try another, or something else.

I love these lime-colored barberry bushes that emphasize vertical growth.

We made this berm two years ago to block the flow of water from higher parts of the neighborhood and channel it toward the drainage swale rather than across our lineout beds.  We are both enamored of creeping phlox. Its peak bloom follows the weeping cherry tree.

The Kousa dogwoods on this berm are supposed to do well in full sun.  I'm worried, though, about their exposure to "full wind."  I was heartened to see we'd saved them by using a soaker hose last summer.  Their leaves are just starting to emerge.

Water control is an issue on the other side of the front lawn, too.  The small drainage ditches on the other side of the road are not up to the job of catching all the runoff when we have a hard rain, so a shallow wave crosses the street and flows over the two beds of breeding daylilies.

This is the evidence of flowing water across a path in the bed.  On the lower right of the picture, the daylily JOHN GALT has had its roots exposed.

There are four or five plants with exposed roots at various locations in this bed.  I have bags of topsoil on hand from Home Depot and will use it to build up the soil level in the washed-out areas.  But then I have to work out a method to direct the flow of storm water, which probably will entail putting in metal garden edging so that the path becomes the water channel during rain.

This is a new bed for selected seedlings, which are currently growing in a rectangular bed slightly downhill from the new location.  I had thought that by this time I would have moved several dozen plants into this bed to make room for new seedlings.

These are the seedlings we want to plant.  They haven't matured enough to plant, which is good, because the ground is too soggy to till.  Preparing the ground is another to-do item.

There is no use in fretting and stewing when the temperature or watery conditions force you to remain indoors.  The thing to do is rest up, because you know you're going all-out when the window of opportunity opens wide.

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