Three ambitious projects in the garden

One of my favorite garden blogs, cold climate gardening, often has before, during and after photos of garden projects, which I love seeing. So I follow that example when I think of it. There is a garden party scheduled for July 19 (Michele I am sorry you can’t make it!!) o we’re motivated to get a few things done for that. One is the top of the front yard, one is my great patio-off-the-sunporch idea, and the other is the sweet pea trellis. So, first:

The front yard–our instant hummingbird garden

It took me three hours start to finish to pull this off. We decided we wanted to have a fairly low garden right in front of the front porch because we didn’t want to block the view of the rest of the garden or the beautiful meadow we can see from there. Especially in the evenings, it gives us a lovely view of the setting sun. And we wanted beebalm for the humming birds. We decided to put beebalm in the center and my smallest daylilies around the outside, because a. I have lots of daylilies and b. they transplant so well. Here is the top of the front yard a few years ago, before we smothered it with newspaper and hay:july 9 009And after smothering:IMG_9672

Here’s the spot yesterday morning before I started work, with some branches outlining the proposed bed:July 10 025So first I hauled up some rotting hay to create a little wall all around the bed, making a kind of bowl to hold the dirt:July 10 027Then I took the wheelbarrow and pitchfork down to the horse pasture and brought up three heaping loads of mostly rotted well composted dirt. july 7 036Then I prowled the whole garden with my shovel and dug up clumps of four different colors of beebalm and a dozen varieties of short daylilies. I planted them in the bowl of dirt and watered everything like crazy, then added more hay mulch. I was happy to see that this morning nothing was wilted or looked stressed. Here’s what it looked like at the end:July 10 029July 10 028Now it is up to the worms and other critters to make this old hay into actual dirt. It will take less time than you might think!

The sunporch patio!

Before–a few days ago:garden 377july 7 002During:

plants temporarily homeless, waiting to be re-located

plants temporarily homeless, waiting to be re-located

plants mostly gone

half way there

the view from the sunporch door

the view from the sunporch door. Mr Fluff supervising.

all plants and bulbs removed

all plants and bulbs removed

And the plants’ new home:July 10 006The sweet pea plants that had been in that spot got relocated to a “ladder-trellis” at the edge of the meditation garden.

Sweet peas make a move

020This picture is from last year in early August, in the morning. You can see the sweet peas and their ladder trellis, which they usually refused to grow on, preferring to flop around wherever. We disassembled the ladder and put it up against the rail of the newly built wall leading into the meditation garden. Here’s the rail:

held together with grape vines

held together with grape vines

After: slightly grumpy looking sweet-peas. They were looking pretty good this morning. I’ve transplanted sweet peas before, and I have no doubt they’ll be fine. July 10 024And what were the cats doing during these two days of intense gardening effort? What you’d expect!July 10 009July 10 012


3 thoughts on “Three ambitious projects in the garden

  1. I’m glad to hear you like to see before and after pictures. I think your sweet peas need more than a ladder to climb up. They like to grasp around very thin supports, so if you stapled chicken wire (or plastic mesh with about the same size openings) to the ladders, the sweet peas will have an easier time clambering up.

    • Thanks for the advice–those transplanted sweet pea plants have died back now but past experience tells me they’ll come up just fine next spring. And by then I will certainly take your advice and put up something they can climb up easily.

  2. Holy Moly you’ve been working Anne. Great job. And of course the cats just look like they’re sleeping when they’re really supervising the work you do. Be well and it was great seeing you tonight.

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