The Rundown

Feeling rundown? Not as yet, my readers. Here is a list of what has been done so far in my 2014 garden – the list may revert to daily, then weekly, and who knows? Even monthly. But for what it’s worth, here goes:

  • Dug out Fennel Forest in back, near where pond used to be. These plants were not the “Florence” type. They became woody, impenetrable stalks, with fleshy roots that spread out, and became even more fennel plants. I only saw only one or two caterpillars last summer. Having moved some of the plants to a better spot in the South garden, I dug out the shallow roots to make room for my low-growing greens. Every part of this plant is edible and pleasantly fragrant. Any takers? Scarily, the growth and vigorousness reminds me of bamboo. But not as hopeless.
  • I cut back some grasses. Maiden grass creates massive hummocks which are impossible for me to manage. We are going to ask some landscapers to remove the largest hunks, which contribute to algae on our house being too close after a time. Using the straw from these as mulch or weed suppressors for the time being. I much prefer the smaller grasses, and will keep some around, as my garden develops.

  • My kerria shrub had suffered many dried and dead tips this winter. It was prone at one point, under the snow. I snipped off the brown edges. This plant is very nice; it has great yellow blooms in the spring after the nearby forsythia finishes, and lovely bright green stems in the winter. Those stems, though, dry up and turn brown so I have to keep an eye on it. Beware – I’ve been literally whipped in the face from the branches springing back after being held back for reaching into the heart of this plant.
Another day of gardening turned up this list:
  • Cut back my Montauk daisy. This has to be hard pruned, or it will lurch out and cover nearby plants. Also, it will bloom nicer if cut back hard in spring, then tipped off during the summer months.
  • Moved another clump of fennel to the Southern area, and checked to see that the Jerusalem artichokes are cleaned out and ready to grow. All this tall stuff has to be by my pea/sunflower fence, to provide a safe and sturdy support for birds and hummers. This also is a screen for privacy, and an attractive shelter for small critters hiding from the cats.
  • Some of the ground is now soft, but still frozen a few inches underneath. I suppose under that it is also soft, and that is where the worms et al are hiding. This is important to monitor, as I need to cut out a Joe Pye weed and add it to my lovely pea fence.
All this leads to that rundown feeling. It is a feeling of getting things done, on a daily basis, that help the garden and help me to understand growing things and to grow in knowledge of mostly when to take a break!

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