Winding Up Another Week

Anisacanthus wrightii

I thought I'd start using Sundays to journal the week's garden related activities, both on and off my corner of Katy. I try to make notes as I work so I can record significant plantings or events in my Lee Valley 10 year garden journal. Since there are only 5 lines for each day's notes and I frequently have more than 5 lines worth of activities/events/comments/observations, I'm thinking that posting a weekly summary will be useful, not only to the Head Gardener and me but hopefully to some of y'all as well.

Monday: I weeded out the rose bed and dug up some Belladonna lilies in the process. On purpose, mind you. These have been in that bed for almost 2 years now and have never bloomed. I was optimistic when I saw healthy foliage emerge this spring but then it began to die back at the tips. When I dug them up, I could see soft spots on the bulbs, some of them already rotting. I rinsed them off, let them dry out and set them aside, then did some research on them. Well, duh. If these are the same Belladonna lilies as sold by Brent & Becky's, the foliage should die back around now and be followed by leafless bloom scapes in the fall. The HG is shaking her head and wishing she'd cautioned me to research first, dig second. Sigh. I guess I'll replant them and see what happens. I will put them in an area with leaner, drier soil this time.

Today I finally planted the Heart of Gold Cantaloupe seedlings that I'd started in May. Carol of May Dreams Gardens sent me the seeds and I do so hope they'll produce tasty melons. There's a bloom on one of them ... that's a start. They were watered in by a nice shower that night.

Tuesday: Rain and a root canal kept me out of the garden. The storm that morning was pretty intense but no flooding. The Weather Underground station nearest me only recorded 0.5 inch of rain but there were 2-3 inches in various containers around my garden.

Wednesday: Although the skies to the north were stormy and I had hopes of more rain, it never materialized. By the time I realized it was a lost hope, it was too warm and sticky to venture out. I've found over the years that if I get started by 9:00 AM, I acclimate to the heat as it builds and I'm good until noon. I will say that I've been exceedingly thankful to my former neighbors, who put their house on the market when they moved in May, for giving me access to their pool. I average about 3 visits a day when I'm gardening. I'll certainly miss it when they sell the house! Maybe I can strike a deal with the new owner ...

Clematis armandii

Thursday: I finally planted the Clematis armandii I bought at Barton Springs Nursery in Austin 2 months ago. I'd been waffling about where to plant it and I finally picked a spot along the back fence, which needs some evergreen interest. The HG is worried that the afternoon sun may be too intense in that spot. We'll be watching it over the next couple of weeks to see.

Unnamed Sedum: any ideas?

Friday: I spent several productive hours at the Chronicle today, adding entries to the Plant Database. On the way home, I stopped at Thompson & Hanson nursery since I haven't visited them in quite a while. I found an interesting Sedum, no species or variety listed ... anyone recognize it? I didn't buy that one but I did bring home three 2-inch pots of another succulent. I love the colors of both of them.

This one came home with me.

Saturday: Although I didn't get started outside until after 10:00 AM, thanks to my trip to World Market, I still managed to get some time in outside. I spent some time being an outstanding gardener, standing in one spot staring at the daylily bed, which needs a major overhaul. I'm going to do that in the fall, though. It's not worth risking heat exhaustion! I want to lift all the plants in that bed, then add soil and replant. The daylilies have already lost their status as the focal points of the bed, thanks to the reseeding abilities of Violas, Gaura, Verbena bonariensis and Echinacea. All of those will be seriously thinned out when I rework the bed.

I also took pruners to one of the Texas Persimmons in the back. It's shading the pond so much that the remaining water lily is not happy. The sun was too much for me and I decided that the Persimmon needs the attention of my tree guy. Even with Shawn's help, that spot may still be too shady. I may need to expand the pond into a sunnier area. The HG says that she has her doubts the Executive Producer would be thrilled at the idea of spending $$$ to make a $40 water lily happy.

Sedum spurium 'Tricolor' and Elfin Thyme

I paid a visit to Lowe's for mulch and a perusal of the clearance rack. I came home with 2 small succulents, 2 bags of cedar mulch, 3 Sunny Knockout Roses for $2 each, a Sedum spurium 'Tricolor', and an Elfin Thyme. I spent the rest of my time outside working in my neighbors' garden. I weeded several areas in the back garden and planted the 3 roses there along the fence. I thought I owed them a little something in return for the pool privileges!

Oh, yeah, a note re the thyme: I was delighted to find it at Lowe's and recognize it as the groundcover I've been admiring planted in a neighbor's mailbox bed. It's slow-growing, adapts to shade and stays about this height, based on what I've seen of it in that bed.

OK, that's it for this week. Tomorrow is Monday and we shall see what the day brings!