Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Quarterly Report -- What I've Accomplished So Far This Year

One of my favorite PNW bloggers, Erica Strauss of Northwest Edible Life, recently started a new feature -- the weekly report, in which she reports in a simple bulleted list (for the most part) what she has accomplished on her homestead for the week. I think it's a great idea, but I don't know if I'm up for doing it weekly. So I thought I'd do a quarterly one for the year, even though it's May and we're midway into the second quarter of the year already.

(As an aside: I'm not sure I can explain my affinity for Erica's blog. At first glance I have very little, if anything, in common with her. She's a young mother who home-schools her children and grows a lot of her own food, so her blog focuses mainly on edibles, cooking, and urban animal husbandry. She just came back from taking a year off from blogging and gardening because her head wasn't in it -- which was true of me for last year too. She lives with mood disorder/depression, which I do too. I've been into her blog since she started it.)

Anyway, here's a list of my accomplishments so far this year:

** Did a ton of weeding and cutting back (which hadn't been done anywhere in over a year)

With the weeds pulled and everything trimmed, you can actually make out the shapes of plants again

** Got the stream running again

View from an upstairs window of the now-running stream

** Planted water-loving plants into the gravel of the stream bed

Water Hyacinth

Two black gamecock Iris

At the base of the waterfall, a combo of chocolate creeping jenny, bloody dock, and purple pickerelweed (Can you spot Huey and Dewey?)

Huey and Dewey (Louie is all by his lonesome is on the other side of the waterfall)

** Planted new plants along the back of the stream

Cyclamen, Corydalis lutea, Hellebores and Thalictrum ichangense have been added to this area, but it still looks rather bare

** Planted new plants in the Northeast shade bed

New gold-leafed Hostas and other perennials have added bright spots to this dark corner

That empty spot in the bed on the right might be the future home of a fern table

** Started seedlings in the greenhouse (now being hardened off outside)

Too many Castor bean seedlings

Unhappy Tithonia and Cerinthe seedlings that want some heat and to get in the ground

** Pulled out plants from the front bed by the street that were inappropriate (got too tall and flopped) and planted shorter, more appropriate plants instead

** Moved the Brugmansias out of the garage onto the driveway

** Put in a new flagstone and gravel path to serve as a short-cut through the front bed along the street (photos to come in a future post)

** Took out the lilac bushes (technically I hired a strapping young lad to do this, but it counts)

Empty hole where lilacs used to be

Still to do:

** At least three more beds still need weeding and cutting back

I ignored this bramble last year when it appeared, now it has popped up again this year as well as 10 feet away and even more vigorous than before

** The Great Migration of Plants

** Plant onion starts in the raised vegetable beds

Six pots of onion starts -- why didn't I bring a couple of pots to the swap? Now *I* have to plant them all!

** Freshen the soil and fertilize the Brugs

** Plant more new plants in the front bed by the street

** Plant new shrubs and perennials where the lilacs were removed

** Renovate the gravel garden

The gravel garden has gotten wildly overgrown and weed-infested

** Install two more gravel paths

One gravel path will go through here and continue in back of the stream

A second path will curve around this tree and to the left

** Plant, plant, plant

** Stop hoarding plants

I have too many trays of plant starts set aside for use "some day"

While weeding I found a bunch of self-sown red-leafed Euphorbia, but I couldn't just toss them into the yard waste bin like shotweed

When I pruned one of my rosemary shrubs I found three branches that had rooted, so I had to pot them up

Two of those trays contain Pacific Coast Iris divisions, which have been hanging around for a while now (I bring them to swaps in groups of threes and sixes, I'd be embarrassed to bring them all at once)

These daylily clumps aren't even in pots! What's wrong with me?

So, how's progress in your garden? Are you as anal-retentive as I am?