Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Garden Walk boot camp

Actually, I wasn't the one who used this phrase—it was another gardener I interviewed for the book. But the routine she described is not unlike what we all have to do before opening the gates for this event.

Weeding is huge. There can be nothing coming through the flagstones or in mulched areas between plants. Where the plants are tight, a few weeds aren't going to be too noticeable. Then the mulching. I try to find a fine, undyed mulch that's still pretty dark. Then the deadheading—usually just daylilies, lilies, and annuals need this at this time. The wisteria and the mock orange have to be trimmed back, and anything tall has to be staked, if necessary. Now we also have the pond to clean out; the wisteria leaves have a way of rotting in the corners of the stones. The edges of the beds are trimmed so there aren't too many plants overflowing their boundaries. And so visitors have a clean walkway.

Another thing we did this year is clear out a bed of pachysandra (the previous owners couldn't get enough of this plant) and replant it with shade perennials (above). I have high hopes for some double hellebores, gingers, and heuchera, some of which I picked up during a recent visit to Plant Delights in North Carolina. Of course these plants won't impress the flower junkies.

Gardeners have to weed, mulch, trim, and replant all the time. But it's actually kind of nice to have a target date like Garden Walk to aim for. Keeps us on our toes.


LostRoses said...

Unfortunately, I won't be in Buffalo this weekend, wish I was! I'll be thinking about you counting down (and weeding down) to the big day while I lazily watch my weeds grow. You certainly have an incentive to keep the garden trim and tidy. Can't wait to hear all about it!

Carol said...

I agree, without a target date to complete something, there is always tomorrow. I hope you all have a great time at the Garden Walk. Those of us in the blogosphere who can't be there in person await the online reports and updates!

Carol at May Dreams Gardens

Wayne Stratz said...

I am still amazed at our good luck to have chosen Buffalo to vacation and picking this weekend. We love walking around looking at houses and gardens, and now we can enter the gardens instead of just gawking from the sidewalk!!!

doubt if we will get to every garden but we will not mock weeds or a dead flower missed.

at some point I wish you can say "good enough" and sit back and rest a bit before having to greet all of us.

Jim said...

I did Garden Walk boot camp this past weekend and my garden now looks like a better version of my garden. Edging, sweeping, trimming, weeding, watering, mulching, labeling and deadheading. Not necessarily in that order.

Hey, did you know Elizabeth has a pink flamingo?!

Annie in Austin said...

It would be a fantasy vacation for many of us, EAL, including me.

When the Austin garden bloggers visited each other's gardens this spring, we all did some extra tweaking and then were happy to meet.
Y'all are going to have so much fun!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Chitweed said...

Yes, a target date is always good. We have a big family get together at our house early each summer. It makes me work mad hard, but then I have a wonderful, mulched,finished,tweeked garden for the rest of the summer.

Wayne Stratz said...

is it legal to take photos of pink flamingos?

lisa said...

Pink flamingo? Whoda thunk it?! Much as I would feel funny about a bunch of strangers in my garden, I agree that something like this would make me feel happy to have things tidied up (after I'm done, anyway). I think your shade plantings look great! Even if the "flower junkies" aren't that impressed, it is also a good inspiration for them to see how nice foliage can look, plus it lasts all summer, not just during "bloom time". Well done!

Daylilies said...

Sometimes I pick the daylilies for a fresh salad. They make a great garnishment and they taste great.