Sunday, May 30, 2010

My yard project for today

As I wrote in an earlier note, I have been pulling roots of bittersweet and trumpet vine that took over the driveway side flower garden along our fence. I've wanted to tackle that wasted space and those vines for the past several years, but I kept putting that job off, because I knew it would be a back breaker. I regret that decision now. Tom, can't help me dig, pull, or do heavy work, because he has back problems.
Finally, this spring I decided the time was now. I couldn't stand to look at those vines any longer. I love that that space won't be wasted now, and I get to have more flowering plants to decorate the yard.
After many hours over several day of yanking roots, I've  finally made headway. I think I got most of those tenacious roots out. Well, hopefully at least for the time being. I know more plants will sprout from the roots that I missed. Some of the roots I yanked out are over 4 feet long and 2 inches thick. The roots are very hairy looking with lots of tiny side roots that go off in every direction.
 I will just have to pull  out the new plants/roots, as they break thru the ground. I just hope there's not to many of them that decide to come back. Why can't plants grow as well as weeds and invasive plants do in our gardens and yards?
The weekends landscaping project turned into a bigger and harder job than I first imagined.
 I went outside around 10 a.m this morning, and started turning the soil over to get it ready for planting.  So far, I've accomplished approximately 2/3's the length of the fence. I then planted 2 small clematis plants, and a annual vine, Mandovilla that has a white trumpet flower. At least, I think that is what the plant is called.
I brought out my gladiola bulbs, and dahlia tubers as they need to get into the ground too, but I will finish up the planting  job tomorrow.
 It is a beautiful day. Very warm, and sunny, and there is no breeze to speak of. Just not so great for digging.

I had to come in and take a break. My body felt like I was overheating. My face was really red and I was tired. Digging is a lot of work in the soil that hasn't been turned over in a very long time. There were a lot of   small rocks to be removed too.
The picture below shows the area I dug and smoothed out. I still have more to do along the fence. You can see the  bags of bulbs waiting for me to go back outside and get them planted.  I had to use a spading fork to break up the hard ground after I removed as many of the roots as I could. Not an easy task, because the spading fork just found more of those spidery roots. I have dumped 3 wheelbarrow loads of the roots.
1st picture.... shows a part of the area along the fence that I turned over by hand
 2nd picture.. some of those obnoxious roots
 3rd picture...smoothed area waiting for the bulbs that are waiting to be planted.

I  also finished my first blue and white glass garden totem, and decided to put it in the new cleaned space. I have been collecting pieces of glass for several weeks now. I found several pieces of inexpensive glass in thrift stores and yard sales. My first garden totem has a blue and white oriental porcelain base that in another life was a candle holder. That blue and white piece was my first find, and so I had to hunt for pieces of blue glass to use with it. I used E-6000 to glue the glass pieces together. To the base I glued a heavy dark blue tumbler, and on top of  that a small blue glass candle votive. I finished my totem off with a heavy, clear glass soup bowl that has a fruit design  etched into the underside. I decided to put a plant in the bowl for added weight. Just until I am sure the glue is thoroughly dried. I'm not sure if I will fill the bowl with bird seed or use it for a small bird bath.
 Below is my first garden totem. The picture of the totem with the plant I noticed was on uneven ground when I was downloading my pictures. I will have to straighten that out when I go back outside.
  I'm pretty happy with how the totem turned out. What do you think? You should make one for your yard.  Thanks again, Shelly Rae for the garden totem idea that you shared. I want to make a few more to put in other area's around the yard.

Now, that I've had a nice cold, glass of ice tea, and sat at my computer, and blogged for a bit, I have cooled down. So, I need to get offline, and get back to planting those bulbs.
 I want to get this project done before the weather gets any hotter. The sooner the bulbs get planted, the sooner I will be able to enjoy their beautiful blossoms. Oh, and this morning,  I also noticed that some of my lavender plants in the back yard are starting to bloom, and my hydrangea's are loaded with buds.
Many of those hydrangea in the past had never bloomed since I put them in the ground several years back.
Have a wonderful day.


Kerry said...

Elaine - your hard work certainly does show! I know how difficult turning rock hard soil is, but once you get it done it really makes a difference. I love the glass totem! It's 90 and humid here, rain was forecast for yesterday and today - wish it would just to get rid of the humidity. Don't work too hard! Kerry P.

Carol's Crafts said...

Wow Elaine, I can't believe you tackled that job all by yourself. That's a big job!! Did you not have a man around anywhere that could have helped you with those big ole roots? Well, I know you are thrilled to finally get that done. It's going to look fabulous when everything is planted and blooming.
I Love your garden totem. It is soooo pretty. I love the blue that you used It's such a calming color to have in the garden. Now, you need to find a little spot in the garden to put a little seat, so you can sit down and enjoy it.

Ruth Bonar said...

Elaine, I can't do that much work in my garden myself now, but I would enjoy it. Gary has to do the digging of holes, etc. I have also been working in my flower beds for the past two days. Maybe I'll post a couple of pics on ARTHaven. I love your garden totem. It actually looks kinda neat with a plant on top.
Don't get too hot working...take a rest and get some water. And be sure to just sit and admire your work.

Anonymous said...

Elaine your hard work looks AMAZING your totem is SO pretty and the bookmarks are beautiful!!! It's amazing what we can accomplish when we are not on the computers!!!!!!

Angie Hall Haviland said...

BEAUTIFUL Totem, Elaine!!! You got so much done!! Yeah for you!!!

ShellyRaeWood said...

you should be resting and having some tea!! That's a LOT of work!! LOL It does make me miss my old trumpet vine from Illinois though. Mine was along a fence and up the sides and roof of our old garage so it could just "be wild". You totems are gorgeous. You have given me new inspiration: using them as a plant are brilliant!! I am inspired!
Thanks a bunch!!