Monday, June 25, 2007

Time for the next backyard project

Between BBQ’s and some outdoor fun this past weekend, I started working on my next backyard project – adding a water feature. A water feature is something I have wanted to do for some time, but I just could not find the right look. The finished project will be a large rock with watering running over it.

It will be located in the back of my yard amongst the shady perennials. This past weekend I dug out and moved a hydrangea tree that I planted a couple years ago. Surprisingly, it was easily dug out and moved. I also started digging the soil out for the four foot round preformed pool that I will be sinking into the ground. Make your day a good one.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Raised Vegetable Garden Part IV

Over the weekend, I finished assembling the raised vegetable garden. Once the quickcrete was hard which only took a day – I guess that’s why it is called quickcrete, I screwed the 1x12’s to the post. I then added 2 x4’s around the bottom- right at ground level to give it some additional strength.

When it was all put together, I scraped the grass out of the inside and began filling it with soil. I used a combination of soil that I had from my yard and old soil from some container gardens. Most of it though was filled with composted manure and peat moss. Once I had the soil / manure / peat moss combo within about an inch or so from the top, I spent about half an hour mixing it all together.

I then set the sprinkler to run over the raised bed for about an hour so that the soil would settle a bit before I planted it. All of that took me to late Sunday afternoon. Now, all I have to do is plant it… and then be patient. In 60 days or so, I should have the much-anticipated tomatoes.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Raised Vegetable Garden - Part III

Last night it was back to work on the raised vegetable garden. I got the posts in place, brought the boards over and nailed it together with some light weight nails. After making sure everything was straight with the house and squared off, I poured some quickcrete concrete mix in the holes so the posts will stay in place. I originally was just going to dump soil back in the holes to hold it all in place, but decided to do the concrete so that it would not shift over time.

I’ll give this a few days to harden then continue on with all the finishing work.
Here are few photos of my progress.

Make your day and weekend a good one.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Ramblin' Red

One of my favorite sayings which I once read on a garden plaque says, "You should have been here yesterday, my garden looked perfect". I don’t there is ever perfection in a garden, but there are days where it gets really close.

My favorite climbing rose, the Ramblin’ Red is in full bloom right now on the gazebo in my backyard. Year after year this rose has proven itself in my yard, giving me countless beautiful red blooms at about this time of year and then random roses until it freezes. If you have space for a climbing rose in your yard, this would be my hands down pick.

Here is a picture of how it looked this morning.

Make your day a good one.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Raised Vegetable Garden - Part II

What a beautiful weekend – I would call it perfect! As I mentioned in the last posting I tackled one of my summer projects - building a wood raised vegetable garden in my side yard. OK, I know it’s not technically summer, but it seems close enough.

It is not too late to plant warm weather loving vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers or eggplant. I plan on finishing this raised bed in the next ten days or so and that should still give me time to get things planted and growing. I may have tomatoes late this year, but late tomatoes are better than no tomatoes. For those of you followed along last year, you know that I love nothing more than BLT sandwiches with fresh from the garden tomatoes.

I cut all the wood for this project this past weekend and got all the holes dug. Luckily I have great soil with a sand base. The posts are going down about 24 inches or so, which should be enough to keep them in place. The raised bed will be 12’ x 48” and 12” high. It is all made of cedar. When making a raised bed out of wood, you don’t want to use treated lumber.

I’ve attached a few pictures of where I’m at with this project.

Make your day a good one.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Raised Vegetable Garden

While I didn’t want a storm yesterday, I was hoping that we would get some more rain. Nope, no such luck for my yard- not even a drop of rain. So, at 6:00 a.m. this morning I was out for an hour watering all the pots and containers. One thing to keep in mind is that even with rain, many times the water does not actually end up in the container. The rain falls, hits the leaves, runs down the leaf and lands on the ground, missing the soil in the container all together.

This weekend, I will start working on a raised vegetable garden in my side yard. The plans are roughed out - very rough may I add and the cedar lumber is bought. It will be 12’ long and 48” wide. I’ve had several places in my yard to grow vegetables over the years, but each one has ended up in the shade, as other things I have planted have grown larger. It’s been a couple of years since I’ve had a place of my own to grow some vegetables. Previously, my neighbors were gone all summer at their cabin and I staked out some unused space in their yard for tomatoes and peppers. They sold their house and now I need to come up with space in my own yard.

In addition it is time to replant the 5 containers on my front steps. They have had pansies in them since early April and are starting to look a bit tired. Pansies don’t like heat and even though the front of my house faces east it gets very hot, I’ll dig them out and replant them in the back of the yard in the shade. Some years they do well back there and other years they don’t. I figure that I’ve gotten good use out of the pansies and if they do well in the back yard, it is just a bonus.

Make your weekend a good one.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Where Did May Go?

Is it June already? Where did May go? What a great gardening month it was. For the most part the weather was nearly perfect. Yeah, there were a few warm days and a few chilly nights, but as the month of May goes, this was not that bad. We still could use some more rain and it looks like a little more is on its way this weekend.

If your lawn is looking a little dry it would be a good idea to water it now and not wait for the rain. Keep in mind that about one inch of water per week will keep most lawns looking good. This is also the time of year that I raise my lawn mower up a bit. Longer grass will shade the soil, keeping it cooler. Cooler soil needs less watering. I raised the blade on my mower last night.

My weekend will be spent getting ready for my annual Brunch in the Gardens on Sunday. Next to gardening and being out in the yard, there is nothing more that I like to do then entertaining and as entertaining goes a brunch is pretty easy even if it is for 40 people. Hopefully the rain we need will arrive and be gone by Sunday morning – my fingers are crossed.

I’m often asked about this time of year if it is to late to plant. The short answer is absolutely not. We may be past Memorial Day, but the summer has not even started. I’m busy adding plants and changing up my yard all summer long.

I’ll be back here next week with details on one of the two yard projects that I will be doing during the month of June.

Make your weekend a good one.