Charlie’s Mid-June Garden 2018

We’ve had lots of rain this month so the vegetable garden is growing well.

The esthetics of this year’s garden is wanting — no mulch yet.

Unfortunately the rabbits that live in the woods have been nibbling heartily at everything Charlie plants.

This year’s pea crop is snow peas. Usually we grow sugar snaps.

He has built his bamboo trellises and surrounded the crops with all sorts of wire barriers.

The peas taste good there are just not many of them.

I’ve eaten the few snow peas that the rabbits missed.

It won’t be long now.

On the bright side, the cucumbers are starting to gain some size. Charlie says we’ll be eating them within the week.

Do you preserve garden vegetables?


The Doggie Elimination Area

The east side of the house where I am cultivating a hydrangea hedge has been designated “the elimination area”.

The elimination area is behind the dog run in the east side of the yard.

This is the place where we take Dash to “do his business”.

The east yard is away from the main part of the back yard.

Charlie has come up with a system to help us avoid stepping in the remnants from earlier visits.

The markers are kept in a nearby urn with an olive tree planted in it.

When the dog has a successful outing we mark it with a skewer.  Charlie felt the plain skewers were not visible enough so he spray painted the tops red.

A marker in place.

Every couple of days Charlie polices this area.

Do you have a clever pet managing device?

My Blue Hydrangeas

I have always wanted a blue hydrangea hedge at the side of the house.

The hydrangea cuttings are planted.
The hydrangea cuttings were planted in September, 2015.

We have the perfect spot where hydrangea flowers turn a vivid blue and last a long time.

The hydrangeas were merely one-leaf sprigs a year ago.
The hydrangeas were merely one-leaf sprigs in 2015.
This year the blooms are profuse.

Now, not quite 3 years later, each leaf has grown into a full-fledged bush.

Looking down on the hydrangeas from the second floor deck last year, 2017.
The change in annual growth is exciting to witness.

The view from the upper deck shows great improvement. The space between each bush is filling in nicely.

This year’s blooms are slowly turning from cream to blue as the weather warms.

Surely we will be using some hydrangeas flowers in arrangements to brighten the house inside.

Nikko Blue hydrangeas.

And maybe giving some away.

I visit this area numerous times daily.

Turns out that I see this far side of the house often. So does the puppy.

What’s growing better in your yard: cultivated plants or weeds?

The Chaste Tree

Last July I ordered a chaste tree because I had learned that butterfly bushes are invasive.

The chaste tree was planted and mulched last summer.

It is a deciduous bush so during winter it just looks like bare sticks. It remained bare so long I figured it was dead.

The bright green leaves in the center is the chaste tree.

All of a sudden the plant started to leaf out.

To the right of the potted olive tree the chaste tree looks very small.

It’s still small but I have hope it will double in size this year. And we’re waiting for flowers.

What’s on your wish list?

Working in the Yard

Sug is almost on her way to another mission trip.

The yard is beautifully green in late spring.

Before she  leaves however she has been beautifying the back yard.

Charlie and I collected river rocks from upstate New York for the entrance to the garden.

The lamb’s ear in the entrance to the potager has been tamed and the pathway through the gate is at last visible.

The red flowers have been successful in attracting hummingbirds.

And of course the flowers in front of the Cottage are getting better.

Are you weeding or planting?

While It’s Raining

It has been a very wet late spring here in Maryland. Last weekend we had devastating floods and its raining again today.

All of last fall’s plantings have survived and are growing well.

I thought it would be a good time to get some foundation planting done.

Blue rug juniper

Charlie took the 3 leftover Blue Rug junipers from last year’s plant order and planted them on the rise between the road and out front lawn. They should fill in to cover the entire area — 6 to 8 feet per plant.

Three spreading juniper bushes have been planted between a dying stump and a large oak tree.

The grass is coming up nicely but Charlie still intends to spread a little more seed.

The pale green lines indicate Brass Buckle ilex and the purple lines indicate salvia. (Plants are above the indicators.)

In the mean time Charlie moved one Brass Buckle ilex on the west side of the house to fill in a hole where another had died. This Japanese holly grows in a mound from 12″ to 18″ tall and wide.

I’m hoping the plants will look something like this when they fill in to maturity.

Then he filled in the ends with some purple salvia plants. I bought 3 different varieties: Burgundy Candles (1), Mainacht (1), Marcus (2) .

The salvia should grown 15″ to 18″ tall and wide.

I think I’ll go back to the local nursery to pick up a few more to really punctuate the each end of the row.

Are you planting something special this year?

We Could Use Another Long Weekend

Tomorrow I’m going to try my best to finish hanging the pink tile bathroom wallpaper.

This is the last area that needs to be papered.

I have only 4 pieces remaining.

The water to the toilet is turned off and the toilet emptied of water.

Also hoping Charlie will reset the toilet in the same room. He removed it earlier in the week and wrestled it into the tub so it wouldn’t be in my way.

Blue Hawk 10-ft x 5-ft x 6-ft Outdoor Dog Kennel Preassembled Kit

In the mean time Sug has ordered a dog run which will be delivered on Monday.  We’ll try to set it up when we get home from work. She selected one with a cover because we have hawks, eagles, and vultures in the neighborhood which might get an idea to attack our small dogs.

I’m planning to use the same white matelassé shower curtain.

Hoping to have a fruitful weekend.  Wishing it were longer.

Do you have plans?