Sunday, July 21, 2013

Squash bug siting

They are back and I've been squishing them over a week and now destroying eggs all over so decided better spray on some neem oil.

This is evidence I think of squash borer a different pest.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

New Collage of Front Yard

After adding herb wheel

HDRish effect

I have just a few more plants to put out here. But wow it's hot and humid tonight.
I ended up digging in backyard instead. 
I was working on corner to get rid of dirt machine couldn't get too.

About 4'3" deepest part

Rylie kept running down the ramp into the hole and vaulting out the other end. Great workout but got more and more precarious as it got darker so finally had to call her off. Ok so now we need a bunch of sand. Where to get that as cheap as possible?

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The tunnel of love

Squash, melon and cucumber love that is...
These were taken June 20 after putting up the 2 cattle panels the night before. I bought them at Farm & Fleet for about $25 each. Pretty cheap for such a nice trellis heh?

Here's how they look now after just 3 1/2 weeks!

And the sun better come out and ripen these tomatoes before they fall over!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Friday, July 5, 2013

Hens and Chicks and Roosters?

Ok maybe I'm fairly new to succulents but are Hens and Chicks supposed to develop into a phallic shape?
I saw these dark red Hens and Chicks in magazines and these were originally darker red but now they're sort of salmon and what the heck are those 2 doing in the middle? Otherwise I'm pretty happy with my corner rock garden.
Lavender so pretty in front of the chartreuse Tiger Eyes Sumac.

I could use something right smack in the middle now that I look at the picture. Maybe more Autumn Joy Sedum it's so pretty! In fact, someone was supposed to bring me some! Lori!

Forget the Planning and Just START!

I love that idea. That's what one chapter said in Fine Gardening's Book on Beds & Borders. The author claims if you try and replicate a picture from a magazine or book it typically is more about color and doesn't come together so she claimed start with a few plants that you really love and add on as you go. So hah! I'm right on track then. I also realized a benefit to that is you can replace pockets of soil and put down mulch and the mulch decaying improves the rest as you go. Another plus is that plants that I have had for 3 years or so now already can be divided or branches off ground cover moved to the new beds so I don't have to buy a ton of plants. So now I can say "yeah I meant to do that!"

So I am trying asparagus crowns and asparagus plants again and this time in the front yard! Gasp! Rosalind Creasy would be so proud. They didn't come back the second year in the vegetable garden in a raised bed full of great soil so now I'll try a raised bed of so-so soil. I did add mushroom compost around them.  The crowns are purple passion and yes I'm very late getting these in. The plants I bought at Farm&Fleet. Never heard of nurseries selling asparagus plants before just crowns or seeds so we'll see how they do. I like it though because it's hard to look at these alien looking crowns below and picture the beautiful fern that grows from them. But the already growing plants give some instant gratification and hope that at least they'll be able to set roots and continue before weeds can return and take over. It took me all day to pick out the creeping charlie so keep your fingers crossed.

Tomorrow I will add more seedlings I have grown of stachy's byzantia, echinacea coneflower, and still needs more plants that I have to think about. It's a work in progress!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Better angle for where I'm putting asparagus

Too many spiky plants? Or too many of same thing? Definitely think the latter.
So I'm drawing and clipping photos to make sure it won't be too uniform and add alternating clumps of stachy's and coreopsis. 

Squash is growing up tunnel fast!

I I took apart the old tuteurs that had 4 legs and cross peices and put back together just three legs and steepened the angle to make the footprint smaller so I can grow 4 different types of runner beans. Rylie helped me paint these and it was great fun. It got dark too fast and we still have one more to make. I'm hoping I don't run out of time I'm trying starting much later to avoid the Japanese beetle population. 

Asparagus Bed, oh where oh where should you be?

Wow sorry about the prior spelling error. I barely remember writing this but I guess that's what happens when you can't sleep and decide to blog at 4 am. Monday I was talking with Johnpaul McGreal, a professional horticulturist here in Peoria, about interplanting my Asparagus between a line of Rose bushes and Russian Sage. He thought it might work.

Now of course I'm wondering about the soil composition. Since the idea of adding asparagus grew out of my interest in Front Yard Edible landscaping and also because Asparagus is a perennial I've been really struggling with where to put it.  And it would be easier if the bed wasn't already planted to prep it in fall and such because this bed is already made of course but it's not "finished". I need to go ahead an edge around it. Then I was going to add a bunch of chopped leaves as mulch but then I was going to top it all off with pine mulch.

But now that I'm thinking about the Asparagus "trough" I was also going to add mushroom compost with the clay I dug out and add it back. Plus to make things even weirder I have both crowns (yes I'm late planting because I just couldn't decide where so may not be good anymore) and I have 6 1 year plants in pots I bought at Farm and Fleet. And no one talks about buying asparagus "plants" just seeds vs. crowns. But when I saw them already growing I thought wow maybe I could get a bed somewhat in this year after all. But I'm fully aware it could be my 3rd Asparagus bed failure. I'm ok with that.

My thinking on where to put Asparagus.
Originally I was thinking there was more room between the roses and Russian sage and there may be I'll have to shoot another picture later this morning when sun up to see if it's just the angle is confusing.

Current look of that bed

From another angle still doesn't show spacing well

Close up of the double knock out roses
Prior bed was in my "proper edible garden" came up first year with lovely fronds in a raised bed. Second year only a few came up again. I think however it was my fault because I misunderstood some directions I was following about when to chop down the fronds and didn't wait till they were full dead/brown. I just though come fall I was to cut back and compost. Now that I know more I realize the energy from the fronds probably needed to be returned to the roots. BUT it also could have been another problem entirely.
First Year

Last year or Second Year

So anyone have any ideas?

Monday, July 1, 2013


I keep having to rein myself in from buying 20 lavender plants to line a sidewalk or front walk I should say that hasn't even been built yet. Meanwhile these 2 will suffice.  I also managed to get some new lavender plants going by ? Shucks mind has gone blank.  I had long spindly plant was blown over and so I let the branches stay that way and tucked into ground and now several new plants. What's that called?

Everything looks cooler on instagram.