Sunday, November 29, 2009

Garden Week Update

Well, my week of gardening is almost done. I didn't complete all of the tasks on my list, but I did complete some tasks that weren't on my list. All in all it was very successful, and tons of fun! I really enjoyed having my mother-in-law here for the end of the week. She said that she hadn't been that sore in years, but loved every minute of it. I can't wait until she moves to Austin in a few years so we can do this all the time.

Here's my progress in pictures ...

1. Make pvc/rebar freeze-protector hoops for the veggies

2. Clear out the grass between the raised beds and place new weed blocker down that I received from Gardener's Supply in the mail last week

I didn't quite finish this, but I'm close. I only have a few sections left. If the weather cooperates I could finish today.

3. Dig out more grass and make glass mulch/flagstone pathways. (Thanks to Robin of "Getting Grounded" for the glass mulch idea.)

Path near front door. You can see the new pink pot as well. I had a boring old white pot that was left here by the previous owners. My mother-in-law suggested we paint it pink. It really pops next to the Knock-Outs.

Another view of the front path. I moved the bowling ball to this new location
to showcase the path.

Path in backyard, next to Nana's garden which we put in Easter of this year. It is surrounded by some extra limestone that I got from the Cemetery. I moved these 1.5 inch flagstone myself, which was quite a feat. I plan on getting help next time.

Closeup of the glass mulch

4. Increase the size of the melon bed.

I didn't increase the melon bed, but I did clean it out. I had a watermelon plant still hanging on as well as some sweet potato vines that were out of control. Apparently, I should have pulled these a few months ago. They have to be the biggest sweet potatoes I've ever seen. When I managed to wrestle these guys out of the ground I found that most of them were hollow. You may be wondering what eats such a giant vegetable from underground ...
prepare yourself, it's gross!

Seems the world's largest grubs eat the world's largest sweet potatoes. Ewww!
I found three of these nasty things.

5. Pick up limestone from the cemetery and border the melon bed (Thanks to Brianna of "Seeds
for this idea)
Picking up the limestone was so easy. I just went to the front office and he told me to help myself. They have several large piles of rocks that are free for the taking. I recommend not going the day after a heavy rain, as I did. It makes it a bit more difficult to walk around and park. I will definitely going back here for more rocks at a later time. I love free stuff! My daughter painted the cinder blocks w/ some extra spray paint we had.

6. Pick up mulch from Natural Gardener and mulch all beds

A few of the mulched beds

My mother-in-law and I bagged and hauled 30 10-gallong bags. This new bed sucked up 20 of them. Two days ago this bed was a mix of half dead St. Augustine, another type of grass and weeds. Now it looks just awesome. This took most of yesterday to complete. I hadn't planned on digging out this bed, so it affected a few other projects. It was completely worth it through. The curb appeal is so much better than before.

We also added two grasses. I plan on growing potatoes in barrels in this area next spring.

7. Make wine bottle borders for beds in the back yard.

I didn't get this finished. When I started puting in the wine bottles I decided it would be much easier after a good rain. I'd rather spend a few hours than an entire day.
I'll revisit this project soon.

8. Add two bird baths in backyard.

Finished one bird bath. (Thanks to Caroline from "ShovelReadyGarden" for this idea).

For my second bath I wanted to steal an idea from Eleanor from "GardenOfE", but turns out that round pavers are really hard to find. I may have to come up with something else.
9. Improve borders around citrus trees

Mulched all of the trees. Here is the kumquat tree, which will have ripe fruit very soon.
10. Finish drip system for other two 4X10 beds

I decided to wait on this. Drip systems don't go together very well in the cold. You really need to heat to bend the tubing. We've also been getting decent rain, so I should be ok hand watering through the winter.

11. Put in edging by the road to keep the water/mulch in the new beds

Haven't done this one yet.

12. Sand/paint new potting bench

And the unfinished projects continue... I really will get to this one soon.

13. Plant new plants from San Antonio road trip, and any others I happen to purchase in the next week.

Finally, back to some success. I'm really excited about this one. My neighbor, Dana, recommended that I use this hollowed out tree stump as a planter. I found a pot and planted my "Living Easy" rose from the Antique Rose Imporium. I've also wanted a succulent garden, but didn't know where to put it. I've decided to put little pots around the stump. I've got one already, and will keep an eye out for little pots (or coffee mugs).

14. If I have time ... make new patio where grill is currently sitting

I didn't put the patio in, but I did pick up all the supplies while I had my friend's truck. These things were not light, 54 lbs a piece!

I had an incredible week gardening. It was so relaxing to just get away from it all and be outside. I had a great visit with my mother-in-law. It's amazing how much you can bond without saying a word, just digging in the dirt. I also enjoyed meeting so many people. I couldn't believe how many passers-by stopped to chat about the garden. I must have met at least 10 new people, several of whom I chatted with for a good 30 minutes. There were also at least that many who waved or gave a thumbs up as they passed by. It feels great to know that the hard work I've been doing is appreciated by others. Now I think its time to go outside with a beer and appreciate my hard work.


Iris said...

WOW! Y'all are superwomen! I feel like a total lame-o compared to you. Everything looks so good! The new front bed you hadn't originally planned is fantastic, as is the glass mulch path with the hot pink pot. That's so cool that your neighbors were into to it, too!

ConsciousGardener said...

Good god! I'm exausted from reading this list! WOW is right! You're a wild woman...I love your veggie beds and nice work with the glass of my fav's!

SomeLikeItHot said...

Iris -

Thanks for the compliment, that bed was very hard work. I love the pot as well. I think it's my favorite thing from the entire week. I sat there in the driveway just staring at it. Who knew that boring old pot could turn into something so cool.

Cheryl -

I loved the glass mulch at your house on the tour. When I saw your bed I discovered we had similar tastes with the glass, wine bottles, bowling balls and of course Boston Terriers :)

Michelle said...

Your yard looks amazing!!! It takes a lot of work to get something looking that good. Way to go!

Pam/Digging said...

I think it's really great that you and your mother-in-law garden together. That was quite a list, and I'm impressed by how much of it you did, plus other projects.

vertie said...

Wow! That is a lot of hard work. It all looks great. I had a couple of questions: what kind of edging did you use around the new path with the glass mulch, and which cemetery are you getting the rocks from? Since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I may be borrowing a few ideas!

SomeLikeItHot said...

Vertie -

I got the rocks from the cemetery off of 2222 and Mopac, on Hancock Dr. I forget what it's called. There's a great little nursery right next to it as well that had some really good prices.

The edging I bought at Home Depot. It is made of composite. It bent really easily. I do recommend puting it in after a rain, works much better.

Thanks Michelle and Pam! It takes a gardener to know how much works goes into what can seem like a little project.

Bob said...

I feel so lazy after reading that. It all looks great though. And good going, getting your M-i-L to help. Better than a hired hand and you get to know her a little better too.