Saturday, May 18, 2019

More Mayhem

Mid-May has arrived and once again, we're scurrying around as fast as we can, but alas, we are dreadfully behind.  The weather has not been cooperating for anyone, especially the farmers.  The snow took forever to melt and it's been cold and wet.  Corn should be planted by May 15, but that date has come and gone and there are very few fields planted anywhere.  Rain is in the forecast for the next three days along with temperatures in the upper 40's. 

 We spent all winter going through our stuff in the house, trying to get ready to move out of here by July.  Are we done packing yet?  No.  But it's spring now and no time to mess around indoors, we've got to get out in the garden!

There's a lot of pressure for us this year besides the pending house remodel; the American Hosta Convention is June 12-15, 2019 and we are one of the tour gardens.  525 people have registered to attend, so this is a big deal, no doubt about it.  We'll have five buses bringing in tour attendees on Saturday, June 15 from early morning to mid-afternoon.  

 We didn't have to agree to be a tour garden but it is an honor and we figure this may well be our last big hurrah, so we'll give it a go.  What's the worst that can happen?   (Ok, I won't ask that.)  We want to have everything perfect for the guests, but as we all know, perfection is just an illusion.  I'll settle for progress, not perfection.  

 We worked outside today in the misty forty-degree weather until we were soaked through.  I decided to go inside for awhile and engrave some plant tags with cultivar names.  

I'm supposed to have all of the hostas in the garden tagged, but well, that's not gonna happen.  We have many hostas that are divisions of other hostas and over the last twenty years and countless garden remodels, well, tags were lost.  I also have had 'young helpers' in the garden from time to time who 'found' tags and brought them to me....and is what it is.  Hopefully the attendees will forgive our nameless hostas.  I do know the other gardens will be impeccably organized though.  We'll be the unorganized garden with the big rocks.  

 Very few of our hostas are more than pips coming out of the ground right now, which I guess is a good thing, as we've had a few very hard frosts lately and if they'd been unfurled, it would have been a disaster.  

I think it's a shame the tour is so early; I'd much prefer mid-July as the garden is always at its best then.  But, oh July, lilies, daylilies, everything all at once at peak, and more time for the gardeners to get ready, too.  Oh, well.  Again, it is what it is.

I wish the spring flowers would still be blooming by June 15, but they'll be long gone with only the not-so-lovely foliage remaining. 

Oh, well!  Are you detecting a bit of doom and gloom on my part?  Yes, you'd be right, I'm a tad melancholy, but when have we ever been ready for any garden walk?  Never.  It wouldn't matter, we're always disorganized.  

Carl and I were wondering what we did last fall that put us so far behind this spring, but then we remembered the culvert replacement and the dozen or so big spruce trees we cut down and the memories all came back.  

We started with the culvert slope as soon as the snow melted, regrading and replanting the hostas and ornamental grasses and working on drainage. 

Joel and Audrey did some grading of the driveway, too!

 We finally started to see some green in the woods across the road last week.  Wildflowers are blooming, too.

With less than a month to go, we're at the stage of pick a mess and deal with it.  This week's mess was the Quarry Bypass bed where all the trees were cut down last fall.  Here's pictures of last fall's mess and the stump grinding.

 Carl and I replaced the split rail fence and replanted a bunch of hostas Friday afternoon.  

 Lovely?  Not yet.  But, hey, we're working on it.

Carl has been hard at work making planters and also working on metal projects.  He bent galvanized steel for the Outhouse Gabion bathroom door last month.  We've still got to install it, however.

We also removed the Batting Cage trellis because we'll have to move the garage in June and the trellis cannot be in the way. 

Remember the Batting Cage Experiment?  The way it was: 2017 and 2018:

 This bed was fun for the last two years, but it's time for a change.  Green beans on the trellis along with morning glories and hyacinth beans, it was an adventure.

Easy come, easy go.  Bye bye Batting Cage.

Now for some fun stuff that went on:  Joel took Audrey on her first kayak ride in the Quarry.

Speaking of Audrey, oh, she is growing up fast!  She will be three years old next week.  Audrey and I are partners in silliness.  We love to run around and be goofy.  (I think her parents wonder if they have two toddlers on their hands sometimes.)

 There she is at Easter, wearing her beautiful gown from her godfather, Alan. 

People said being a grandma was the best, and you know, those people were right!  

It is the best.


FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Such a joy to read another post from you and to see all of the loveliness happening in your gardens.

My oh my, I can't believe how Audrey is no longer a baby but a lovely little girl. Time is zipping right along.

You and Carl so inspire me with all that you do. Do take care of yourselves and enjoy each day. I sure couldn't handle tours coming here. You two are BRAVE and such hard workers.

Have a lovely Sunday and upcoming week ~ FlowerLady

Beth said...

Your spring flowers are beautiful. Little Audrey is a doll! How blessed you are. I always enjoy reading about what's happening in Carl and Karen-ville!

El Gaucho said...

Karen - Your garden looks fantastic and the folks on the garden tour are going to love it! No it won't be perfect or pristine or 100% weed free. It will be filled with the care, toil, imagination, and creativity that you and Carl and others have poured into it over so many years. Those folks coming to tour your garden are going to be in for a treat.

I would much rather see your garden than a professionally curated space that was created or managed by professionals. I'd overwhelmingly chose the garden where I could see the love of the space and the love for gardening and the artistry of the people who created it. There may be a little more tidying up to do but you should be incredibly proud of what you have created, it is incredible. If those garden tourers don't love it then they are fools!

Beth at PlantPostings said...

First, your granddaughter is adorable! Also, your plants look very happy and healthy, even if later to bloom than usual. You are very brave to have tours, let alone very large tours, and yes it is quite an honor!

africanaussie said...

I loved all those spring flowers, and once again I am amazed and what happens when all that snow melts! What a little fairy princess your grand daughter is. I bet she loves hanging out at your place, being a grandmother brings out the silliness in all of us.

Karen said...

Rainey, thank you! Yes, Audrey is growing up and leaving babyhood behind. Time does go so fast, we've got to remember to cherish every moment.

Karen said...

Thank you, Beth! :-)

Karen said...

Thank you, John, you are so very kind. I wish you and Alycia and the dogs were coming on the tour, we could use the moral support. And Shadowfax and Shaak Ti could keep the garden clear of any pesky squirrels on the big day, too! Thank you again.

Karen said...

Beth, thank you. Audrey is a sweetheart and if I had half her energy, this garden would have been weeded before the snow melted. Yes, tours are nerve-wracking, as I'm sure you well know. Most people are kind, though, and it is fun to share gardening stories with visitors. :-)

Karen said...

africanaussie, yes, Audrey is a dynamo, a whlrlwind of activity. She doesn't always dress like a princess, though, and is showing a tendency to appreciate rocks. She's been busy sorting out our driveway stones by size. :-)

outlawgardener said...

Wow, three already? That sure happened fast. Audrey is adorable! I'm always amazed by the scale and number of your garden/house projects and how well you do them all.