Tuesday, October 25, 2016

State of the Garden - Fall 2016

Don't get me wrong, it was a fine Oregon summer, nothing too out of the ordinary, perhaps a little too hot too soon in the spring, but the rest of summer went along with few incidents.

But I think I gave up just a little late this summer.

I did my usual watering and fussing about throughout summer.

As usual, I spurred the local economy with my plant buying, especially with a new late season bog/carnivorous plant addiction.

So, I find myself again easing into fall and thinking ahead.

Cercis canadensis 'Merlot' fall color.
Assistant Yvette taking in some fall rays.
This summer I said "f@$k it" a few more times than usual and instead of obsessively deadheading, spot watering, and/or tree trimming, I opted for a cocktail and a seat on the patio instead. I earned it right?

I was a little more "sloppy" at my gardening game this year. It's not that I didn't care about those things, they just perhaps didn't need to be done so often as I used to do them.

For the first time ever, I'm contemplating hiring a "helper" for leaf clean up. My knees and back aren't what they used to be. I can no longer kneel and pick leaves out of flower beds for eight hours at a time. At least without being crippled the next several days.

I've told myself "no more peonies!!!". There are even a few species that are going to go, because they just aren't spectacular enough. Fortunately, one of the really big Paeonia delavayi var. lutea succumbed to what was probably verticillium wilt. But there are a few others I don't love and they "gots to go".   

I have been terribly lax on my plant database bookkeeping. I don't have the same enthusiasm to capture every name and nuance of every plant given to me. Not to mention blogging less and less. I may be living a more vicarious gardener's life through others new blogs now.

I have no plans to dig up any more grass. I've hit the sweet spot for what I can take care of as one gardener. Some grass may go to be replaced by gravel walkways that don't need mowed or edged.

While I'm still in love with my Shedteau, now that the flowerbeds around the patio are growing like crazy, they are already encroaching on the too-small-when-it-went-in patio. I'm really feeling like this needs to be remade, but what a pain in the ass that will be to dig all those plants, move three fish ponds (aka 630 gallons of fish and water lilies), remove the existing pavers, more gravel, pavers and sand, etc...!  Ugh. You get the idea.

Shedteau Yvette

Almost fishy winter sleepy-time.
There is one garden bed in the front, wrapped around by the house and the walkway that I think will be redone next year. I'm not real impressed with what I put in there and think it needs rehabbed.

There are other sections of the garden, that are missing something too. I think 2017 will be the year of ripping out and replacing. The under performers are going to get the boot. Either I will move something already in the garden that needs a new home or replacements will be bought. I need a gaggle of my garden buddies to come give me some tough love opinions about what to do.

I say all these things now, but 2017 is another year. I'm nothing if not a gardening enigma. We can only wait and see what really happens.

In the mean time, here are some recent pics of whats happening in the garden this week:

Crocus sativus (Saffron Crocus)
Camellia sasanqua 'Yuletide' blooming before Halloween!
Ponds and bogs on the driveway.
Cyclamen cuties.

Grevillea x 'Neil Bell' beginning to bloom.

Embothrium coccineum (Chilean Flame Tree) finally putting on some growth.
Tree peony
Late blooming Rabdosia longituba (Trumpet Spurflower)
Callicarpa americana (American Beautyberry)