Shortly after I woke up db said, "what's the plan for today?'
db: yeah plan.
me: I have no plan. What's your plan?
db: I don't have a plan. Aren't we gardening or something?
me: I guess we could. Are you going to make me a tea latte? (Silly question).
So a tea latte, breakfast, and an episode of Trailer Park Boys later we collected our tools and yard waste bags and headed into the front yard that needs the most work.
Recently I spoke to our wonderful homeowners m & d who told me that they had a landscaper come in and assess the workload and give them a quote. My heart sank because I remembered last year watching these strangers tear at the beds and leave nothing behind but a bare patch of earth (the ferns are just starting to recover this spring. Thank goodness). Then our wonderful homeowners thought why not just pay sp and db to do the work they've already started? I accepted. m & d had all kinds of wonderful things to say about us looking after the garden and...aw shucks...I was so flattered.
Now not only do I want to clean up the yard, but I also want it to be perfect. Now we're getting paid so there'll be no more of my half-assed ways (I'm not that bad really).
db is amazing because he lets me plan what needs to get done and then I give him a job to do and off he goes to complete it. Plus he's very thorough and enjoys it as much as I do. So we tackled the weeding. Oh, that nasty horsetail is absolutely everywhere because nothing stops that stuff from growing. I read somewhere that you should never pull it out but rather snip it at the base of the plant. That's what we did. There was still quite a bit of leaf debris to remove. We had to take out a small tree that we still don't know what it was. It was growing as part of the natural hedge in the front, but was really in the way of the rhododendron and preventing it from completely filling out on one side. m asked us to take it out and we did. I felt bad as I do any time I remove a plant, but it's done now and there was no way we could have transplanted it elsewhere. I'd still like to know what it was. It had such an unusual bark that grew about 2 cm up and away from the branches. It was probably some rare and expensive tree that is impossible to find and very expensive and now it's sitting in little bits in a landscape bag on the curb.
Anywho...we had a good day cleaning, weeding and doing some light pruning. However, we still have another cyprus to prune in the front and there's this really rangy looking variegated dogwood that I'm not sure what to do with yet. Three of the four rhodendrons are in full bloom (pink, white, and red) so they will have to wait until summer before I cut out any dead wood there. The rhodos really are full this year. They look amazing (alas I have no photos because the card is full on the camera). You'll have to take my word for it that they are fuller than they were last year. There are also some Portugal Laurel shrubs dotting the property that desperately need some pruning, but I just read that it's best to prune in late winter. So that will have to wait. I guess the gardeners work is never done.
One side of the house is not being used at all. It's not a path or garden space or anything. Right now there is some wild plant that looks like a phlox flower, but the leaves are too round for phlox. I don't know what it is. It's in bloom. It looks nice enough, but I'd rather clean out the space and plant tomatoes there. The sun hits that spot first thing in the morning and stays there most of the day so I think it will be a good location.
Okay, I'm rambling on about the garden, but I'm always happy when I'm in the garden. I could stay out for hours (and did). Even after db went inside, I stayed out and planted some lilies that a friend gave me. I can't wait until the long weekend when we can get out there again!