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Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Five Years And Two Days Later

On June 27, 2012, I decided to give this blogging thing a try.  Five years of posting at least five days a week - 1,336 posts later and I'm still enjoying being part of this wonderful, talented, intelligent, supportive community of gardeners. The best part of doing this is the incredible people I've met in person or online that would have never crossed my path otherwise.  I've learned so much from  and been inspired by you.  Weather you visit and comment every day or just drop by once in a while and never say a word, thank you for sharing this adventure with me!  It's been a grand five years.

Lately I've been visiting a lot of gardens and nurseries and have a great backlog of images in my camera to post but today I've decided to share some pictures of my own garden taken for myself to make a checklist of things to do in the next few weeks before my garden open on July 22. Sorry, it was starting to get a little dusky so the light isn't great.  Please feel free to make suggestions. (Moving isn't an option.)  

Part of one of the hell strips. 

These were taken a week or so ago and now the Romneya coulteri  have begun blooming. 

 Did something decide to die out there?  No, it's just Dracunculus vulgaris blooming.  

More of the hell strip. 



Do you suppose I should cut those brown fronds from beneath the sword fern built up over years or just continue to leave them as natural mulch?



It's a long sidewalk.

 Back out the other end .


The front hell strip.



I suppose it would be a good thing to trim back that English Laurel a bit and maybe cut the volunteer columbines growing between the brick path.   

Side steps up to the back yard. 

View from the top of the side steps.

Yes, I will remove the hoses from paths.

Plants encroaching over half of the path.  Oh well. I've already weeded between the bricks. 






the old old man and the "C."  Must straighten out that "C"

I sure hope that people don't mind walking through Petasites foliage. 

Should I paint the side of the garage Majorelle Blue, terra cotta, or just leave it as is so it kind of fades into the background?





The warm days really helped the last of the colchicum foliage in this bed ripen off.  Since this picture was taken the dried foliage has  been removed and a fresh layer of manure has been applied.  Googly eyes now fill the gaping gash at the top of the topiary. 





 Deutzia is now dong blooming and has been trimmed back away from the palm.




This space has been rearranged (yes, that black plastic pot sitting in the middle of everything  is gone.) and the debris removed so one can actually see brick again.

Still need to tidy up the pot ghetto, maybe even plant a few things. 


Messy Deutzia!

 Meanwhile inside the greenhouse.

 The haze of neem oil from winter spraying has been cleaned off of  the glass table and mirrors. Really looks gross in this picture.



Let's hope no one from Gnome amnesty stops by. 




Should I remove that coat of algae on the floor or leave it? 





Summer's work continues but I can happily report that this temporary potting area is now clear. Okay, there are still buckets but now they're full of bamboo litter which will be falling constantly until autumn.
If you made it through all of these pictures you are a truly patient person!  
Happy gardening everyone! 

50 comments:

  1. It's a joy visiting your blog Peter, and of all the places you feature our favourite will always be the ones of your garden! It's looking fab btw!

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  2. Wow, your garden is looking wonderful and should be quite a hit. This is one of the few times we've gotten to see your whole garden at once and the tour was totally fun. Not only did I make it through (no patience required) I circled back several times to get a better look! My favorite gardens are the ones that reflect the gardener's personality and yours does that beautifully.

    Blue on the garage wall.

    Congratulations on five years of entertaining us with your sense of humor and plant obsession.

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    1. Thank you, Shirley. Since the other wall of the garage is already that blue color and I still have paint left from doing that a couple of years ago, that'll probably be the color I go with if it gets painted at all.

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  3. Happy 5-year (and 2-day) blog anniversary, Peter! I always enjoy your posts and am so glad to have found your blog, which never fails to put a smile on my face. And, much as I enjoy accompanying you on your travels to nurseries and public/private gardens, I love strolling through your garden too. Despite your varied disclaimers, I think it looks VERY good, unlike my own which is currently covered in a thin blanket of fluffy pink mimosa blossoms (which isn't as attractive as it might sound).

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    1. Thanks, Kris! I didn't show the bamboo grove that's covered in fallen litter. Our mimosas won't bloom for a few weeks yet. Maybe they don't have time in our shorter season to produce viable seeds as it's not a pest here at all.

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  4. Congratulations on a both a magnificent blog and a lavish, joyful, generous, exuberant garden. They both reflect their owner.

    (14th picture down, lower right, there's a little space for another plant--time to go shopping!)

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    1. Thank you for the kind words and also for pointing out that spot! Better shop in the pot ghetto.

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  5. Happy Anniversary! Glad to have found you in the blogosphere. In all the time reading your blog I don't remember such an extensive look at your garden. Its amazing, I love the tour. You have more plants in they hell strip then most have in their garden. Everything look spick-and-span and you even found time for hanging baskets. Any more details regarding the July 22?

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    1. Official hours in the book are 10:00 - 4:00 but I'll hang out as long as folks want to stay. It's a Northwest Perennial Alliance open but anyone can come.

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  6. aye Peter! Is your open house for NPA only?

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  7. Is it just my poor attention or have you never posted photos of the hellstrip before? It's 1) massive and 2) INCREDIBLE! I have to admit that I skipped the last half of the photos because I was so excited about commenting on the hellstrip. What other wonders have you been keeping from us?

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    1. I sometimes forget about the hellstrips because I don't spend a lot of time out there other than whacking back the foliage so that people can walk by and picking up the beer cans, hypodermic needles, and other lovely gifts left by visitors. Glad you enjoyed the spaces out on the street.

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  8. Oh my goodness, how fantastic are your garden spaces, starting with the hellstrip and the long sidewalk. I would love taking a walk by your place, with hopes of catching the gardener and maybe seeing 'more'. A wonderful, unique bit of funk and beauty. I love it all.

    FlowerLady

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    1. well, next time you're in my neck of the woods, stop on by!

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  9. You brighten my days and I'm glad I discovered you. The hell strip is way beyond what I imagined. Does the city have Rules about such things? We do, though I ignore some . .

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    1. Likewise! The city does have rules which are enforced only if someone calls and complains to the code violation folks. Vegetation on the sidewalks has to be above 8' and cannot encroach on the sidewalks. On the street side it has to be above 14' and should be back from the curb enough that a passenger side door can swing all the way open. Haven't gotten a love letter from the city this year but have been pretty close to following the rules except for that last one.

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  10. I am excited to see it in person!

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  11. As the Chair of Gnome Amnesty International, I am appalled by the cruel caging of your gnomes.

    Did you know that across the globe, there are more than 10,000 garden gnomes who speak 5,000 languages? Gnomes play an important role in the ecosystem, performing an incredible amount of work when they are free to roam. Unfortunately, because of people like yourself, many are unable to fulfill their function, are denied their culture, and are enslaved in gardens like your own, suffering physical and mental mistreatment--all for simply being a gnome!

    I implore you to release your gnomes immediately and allow them the freedom they so richly deserve.

    Sincerely,
    Gnomalinda Menninkäinen

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    1. Dear Ms Menninkäinen,

      I appreciate your concern for the freedom of the gnomes you saw pictured in my greenhouse and your impassioned plea for their freedom. However you should know that many years ago, a friend gave me a gnome be gone(https://www.uncommongoods.com/product/gnome-be-gones-with-gnome)
      These malevolent creatures, having been set free, now present a danger to our dear gnome friends. The cages, you see, are not an imprisonment but rather a means of protecting those sweet souls from the nefarious actions of the gnome be gone when I cannot be present. It's far from ideal but it's the only environmentally responsible solution. I will not use the popular chemical control known as "Gnome Be Gone Be Gone" because the active ingredient is a known carcinogen and is harmful to pollinators, garden fairies, leprechauns, and unicorns. I wish there were a better solution. If you know of one, please let me know. There's no place like gnome.

      Sincerely,
      Your comrade in the restoration of gnome freedom,

      Outlawgardner

      P.S. if there are 10,000 gnomes and they speak 5,000 languages, does that mean that each pair has it's own language? No wonder they can't unify behind the cause.

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  12. Happy Anniversary, Peter! And my, your guests will be in for a lovely treat when they are touring your beautiful gardens. I wish I lived closer; so much to see, and all exotic to my petunia/geranium/marigold repertoire. Wonderful!

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    1. Thank you, Karen! In the climate out here, there are so many plant possibilities.

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  13. Five years? You've been blogging for five years? Wow...I would have guessed three, tops.

    This lucky people coming to tour your garden, they're gonna fall in love...

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    1. Yes, five years. Seems like you had already been blogging for about as long when we first met & I started. (Just checked your blog, it'll be nine years in March, nearly a decade of blogging. Impressive!) Time flies when you're having fun in the garden!

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  14. Although I don't often comment, I have enjoyed your blog for a long time so I'm delighted you're having fun with it. Your generosity in opening your garden to the public will be rewarded with many gasps of awe as visitors tour your creation. It is a treasure and folks will recognize that.

    Since you mention the brown fern fronds I'd recommend cutting a few then standing back and see how it looks compared to the uncut ones. You'll probably find they look a lot better so you'll continue to cut the rest which will set your mind at ease about them.

    The hellstrip facing the street is wonderful. Is your street wide enough to rope off that side to prevent parking on tour day so folks can get up close and personal to that part of the strip?

    That little twist in the path with the hose and the blue bowling ball on a round riser might be difficult for folks to negotiate. I'd try to widen it as much as possible by cutting back the foliage and moving the begonia pot further away. I'd also take the clear glass insulators away because they are easy to overlook and possibly trip over.

    There are so many delightful things to see in your garden I'm sure folks will love it.

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    1. I'm so glad you enjoy my ramblings. You're right about the brown fern fronds, it would look much better without them. Unless there's an event at one of the churches on Saturday, there usually aren't that many people parked on that street. thanks for noticing the insulators, I've been meaning to do something else with them. The twist in the path is actually larger than it looks in the picture but it's a one person path. Thanks again for your great suggestions!

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  15. Love it! Your garden is gorgeous, and I love all the glass accents, and plants everywhere... I don't always comment on your blog, but thank you for sharing your garden with us, and congratulations on 5 years!

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    1. Thanks Renee, for visiting my blog and my garden!

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  16. What a 'startling jungle!' (Do you remember that book?) Are you going to issue maps? Folks may get lost in there. ;) Amazing place you've have, Peter. Take it easy on your race for the 22nd!

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    1. I do remember that book but have never read it. My garden is actually fairly small so folks won't easily get lost. I'm surprisingly calm about the 22nd; the garden is what it is and I'm just going about the regular annual tasks. The nice thing about the Northwest Perennial Alliance tours is that it's all about members sharing what they're doing in their gardens with each other. There's everything from huge estates to tiny urban gardens.

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  17. I don't remember seeing the hell strip either, and it's fabulous. I still can't believe how the greenhouse became reality and has now filled up to the rafters! Your blog and garden brim over with the amazing possibilities of a garden in the PNW. (And Eliza, I remember Stephen Lacy's book -- quoting Vita's poem!)

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    1. We live on a corner so there are two hell strips, one being about three times as long and two times as wide as the other. I forget about them sometimes because they're out on the street.

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  18. Your garden looks great, Peter. So looking forward to seeing it on tour.

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  19. Quite incredible. Hoov did well to find a planting space.. blowed if I can.
    Happy fifth Peter. Love your blog. And your humour. Your posts often arrive just in time for breakfast here, what better way to start the day. Many more please. Just wish I could visit in person.

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    1. Thank you R.D. You could visit in person but it would be quite a commute:)

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  20. Thanks and congratulations for five years!
    I think this is one of the most extensive visits, wow. Looks awesome! I think your garden visitors are a lucky bunch and I hope they enjoy the open day.

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    1. Thank you! It's funny, I usually don't tour my own garden, just walk out and start working.

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  21. Congrats on your five years of blogging! I look forward to more. As for your garden, it is incredibly lush and abundant. Plus it has lots of personality. Only one thing: leave those volunteer columbines be!

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    1. Thanks Jason. Just for you, I only cut off the seed heads and people will simply have to step over them.

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  22. I will eat my own hat if I won't come over to see your open garden! Hmmm, first, I'll need to buy a hat!
    Peter, Happy Blogoversary! Blogosphere wouldn't be such a great place without your blog! Keep going! I love your blog!

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    1. Thank you for the kind words Tatyana. Hats aren't very tasty. I look forward to seeing you!

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  23. Your garden is so fantastical and mysterious. Maybe I will see it one day . In the meantime, congrats on your posting discipline and the journeys to gardens and nurseries you have shared with us.

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  24. Thank you so much for allowing NPA members to visit your paradise today. I'm still floating on a cloud and may never settle my feet firmly on the ground after entering another dimension in your awesome garden. I love it! Karen Mashburn

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    1. Thanks Karen. High praise from someone whose own magical garden I have so enjoyed touring.

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Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your thoughts.