I've been STUCK in the office for DAYS during some of the best most beautiful weather of the year and I'm starting to feel very resentful. Today, Monday, I'm getting a couple of things finished up in here then I'm going outside and doing something, anything.
I have been getting a few small things done and I did take most of Saturday afternoon to work in the garden. I've moved more than half of that pile of wonderful wood chips and distributed it around the gardens. It's actually the very fine shreds and soil from a major stump grinding job so it is absolutely perfect as a mulch/soil conditioner. I've moved about 12 wheelbarrow loads up to the Storybook and Dark Gardens, where the soil is still rather poor. I wish I had about 3 more piles the size of this one!
I finished digging out the widened bed along the Deck Garden east side. This extension gives me roughly 2-3 feet more space along that edge of the bed, in a gentle curve. Now the sprawling Mugho Pine in that bed no longer hangs out over lawn, but instead is over a clean bed which I think I'll just keep bare/mulched. I don't want too much growing under the pine to distract from it's really unusual shape.
Yesterday, as a "break" from office work, I got the two big sheets of heavy 6 mil plastic sheeting taped together so now I have one 50-foot long strip, 10 feet wide to wrap around the greenhouse when I get to that...
Today, I'd like to get the bigger Crescent bed lifted, divided, and replanted. That's on the menu of things to do today. I'd also like to move at least a few more barrows of the mulch.
I want so badly to get out there! The weather is GLORIOUS, the garden is beckoning, and I'm stuck in the office with a pile of stuff to get done today and tomorrow. Ah well, there's still the weekend and they can all go to Halifax...
I did manage to get out and finish that bit of stone walk yesterday...hauled in some rocks from neighbor's pile (and fixed their mailbox post while I was at it!) and placed the stones, got some gravel in the joints, done!
We have been having cold nights (normal) but still no hard frost. My sweet potato vines are "touched" but not blackened, but I think that I will start digging them up soon. I brought in all my Boston ferns a few days ago and moved the tender stuff onto the deck under shelter.
NEW KITTEN PIC:
Beginning to get the garden ready for winter. I stripped off all the plastic from the greenhouse and put up woven wire fence over the roof to try to fix the sagging of the plastic sheeting. I think this will work because I used this same sort of method on a temporary sheep shelter and it held off a huge amount of snow load. I also finally got the door to the greenhouse properly hung, with the hinges swapped from the right side to the left. Now all I need to do is re-wrap the entire structure in heavy plastic sheeting; I have the sheeting, but it's very windy here today, so I think that will have to wait.
We had a front move thru overnight, with some rain and a lot of wind and the temperatures have dropped dramatically. We went from a high of 80F yesterday to barely in the 60s today (which is vastly more normal). I'm stuck in the office with deadlines this morning, but later this afternoon I'd like to revisit the Big Crescent Bed and lift the plants in it. I want to add in a clump of pale yellow iris, and replant the pale purple iris and salvia, etc. I think I'll remove the raspberry colored bergamot all together and move it elsewhere. That is a very difficult color to work with and it just does not "go" there. Since I've widened that bed pretty considerably last week, I have room to add in some other plants and I'm not going to rush my decision. I'd also like to install a barrier against the front of the bed (it's raised about 18 inches with a drystone wall in the front) to prevent soil and water from leaching through the drystone wall. I think I'll just lay in a strip of heavy black plastic; it doesn't have to be impermeable, just enough to slow down the runoff.
I did get 4 walk rocks placed into the extended walkway that cuts through the Big Crescent bed...I still need a few more, but at least now I can step through there without getting muddy. Widening the bed meant adding about 2-3 feet to the length of the walk.
Had a bit of luck! Coming home the other day, I passed a truck loaded with wood chips parked not more than a 1/2 mile from the house. I asked the man if he'd drop them at my house and he was very happy to do so. 10 minutes later, I had a nice pile of very finely shredded wood chips! I have to wheelbarrow them around pretty soon because he had to drop them onto a bit of lawn behind the mailboxes and I don't want them there too long.
Finishing up in the veg: canned up the last of the hot peppers, sweet peppers, zuchinni, and tomatoes into salsa, hot pepper sauce and jelly. I think I can safely put away the pressure canner and supplies now. I may still get a few more quarts of apple pie filling, but that can go in the freezer. In the veg, I still have white potatoes and sweet potatoes to harvest, a few beets, and some broccoli. I'm not sure if my late cabbages will be worth anything this fall, but I will cover them and see if they make quick growth in the spring. The veg really needs a lot of work and I feel guilty for having to neglect it while dealing with other things. It's times like these I wish somebody would invent a Handy Dandy Acme Do It Yourself Cloning Kit. I could use about 4 of me!
shhh....don't tell anybody. I'm ditching the office this morning and heading out for the garden!!