Boy the weather has been weird here in Portland this spring. We've had some pretty significant swings in temperature every few days, like 30-40 degree swings!
Summer begins next week, but we have already had several days around 100 F degrees.
It's 59 F degrees and overcast as I write this a week later.
The recent hot weather most impacted my goldfish out in their troughs in the full sun. In some of the smaller troughs, I sadly had "fish stew." It was really tough keeping them cool for several days.
I have figured out some "beat the heat" solutions and have upgraded to larger troughs, so the next time this happens I have a game plan. It was a bit of a surprise to be so hot, so early.
I had already planned on upgrading some of the troughs this year and removing the smaller 70 & 50 gallons. I opted for a new 300 gallon and a 180 gallon.
To place everything where I wanted it was a major pain in the rear end. I had to systematically disassemble the smaller troughs, to shift the next size up. It took a long time and I shouldn't have done it on one of the hottest days, but I had to do it. I plan on buying at least three more 180 gallons to consolidate fish and lilies and give them more space.
|My assistant Yvee checking out the new 300 gallon trough.|
|180 gallons of fun!|
|300 gallons fills up quickly with water lilies - It seems so small now!|
I figured, if I was at a point where I would just remove the shrub, I might as well start trimming it back and see what happens.
|My chop job on Osmanthus delavayi - if you use your imagination it has potential.|
There were eight Juniperus chinensis 'Old Gold' outside my fence. They were originally planted to keep the neighbor's cats and children at bay. Over the years I had to turn them all into "boxes" because I wanted to keep them off the sidewalk and the plants next to them. I have removed all but three and planted much more interesting things.The plants that were there now can spread out and be the stars.
|Two of the Junipers are still in this section - the center one was removed.|
|Arctostaphylos x 'Austin Griffiths' has a new home here.|
|Eryngium agavifolium and a Yucca about to bloom|
From some research, I learned that the one chemical that might get rid of my Veronica was really toxic to everything, stayed in the soil for months and I didn't want to expose anything to that. It's just not worth it! So manual removal to the rescue. I'm sure the weed will come back, but if I keep on it next year, eventually it will be manageable.
Below are some of the plants currently in flower or looking pretty:
|Echinacea pallida 'Hula Dancer'|
|Iris ensata 'Royal Lines'|
|Salvia x jamensis 'Sierra San Antonio'|
|Fatsia japonica 'Spider's Web' & Adiantum pedatum (Maidenhair Fern)|
|Nerium oleander 'Hardy Red'|