Finishing the Front

P4270036.jpgI started outside this morning wanting to finish the bed directly in front of the front door. Though I’d done the majority of that bed, for some reason I stopped short of the most visible part, which was dumb, but I started there today, and what a huge difference it made!

P4270043.jpgFirst off, I tackled those green pots. Last year, I never got around to doing anything with them, and what happened is that the seeds from the johnny-jump ups from the previous year sprouted and really looked just fine without any attention from me at all. (Wow, I didn’t even remember to pull them up from the ground and onto the deck, even for the garden tour, but oh well.)

P4270049.jpgI found all sorts of moss growing happily in those planters. It didn’t make sense to leave that there, so I pulled it out onto one of the sleds that I still haven’t taken into the basement, thinking I’d try to get it established between the stone slabs under the pergola.

P4270044.jpgI topped off the planters with potting soil, and put in red, white and blue pansies. That’s my theme for the window boxes all around the deck, so it made sense to continue those colors here directly in front of the house as well. They came out really well, and look so cute and perky. These guys won’t get irrigated, though, so I have to remember to keep them watered. Even though we’re still routinely going below freezing at night, they’ll be fine.

Then I took my sled full of moss over to the pergola area, and planted all of it between the slabs. I really don’t know how well it will do. There’s not much except sand between them, and this moss had been growing in very good potting soil, but still I have high hopes. I really like the way it looks after I was finished.

P4270053.jpgI saw two more newts in the pond, so Gingrich has really done a fine job inviting all his friends over. One of them kept doing this spiral dance thing for so long. She looked quite puffy in the middle, so she’s probably looking for a good place to lay her eggs, but it was amusing to watch her for a bit. The water in the pond is looking pretty green these days, sadly. I hope our pond plants get here soon.

I had planned to continue my bed clean up in a more organized fashion, continuing from the nearest bed to the one I’d just finished in the front of the house. But I got distracted over by the pergola after planting all that moss, so what turned out to be “I’ll just do this one thing” ended up with that whole bed getting done.

The foxglove seeded itself all over the place. I’m not sure what I think of that just yet. I didn’t pull the seedlings, because heck, I have a few started under lights in the basement, so that would be silly. Clearly I like them. But wow, there are hundreds of seedlings out here, and I don’t want them to take over the whole garden. I think I’ll try to dead head them more faithfully and see if I can keep them under control that way.

Speaking of things taking over the garden, those damn Halloween mums were all over the place in this bed. I was ruthless yanking it. We weren’t dumb enough to have spread compost on them last fall, but if there was compost within three feet of one of those mum plants, it sent runners out into that compost anyway. So out they came.

There are several completely blank spots in this bed now where the mums were. I think some of the roses that we ordered earlier this month can go into this bed.

And speaking of roses, I pruned Madame Hardy, just cutting back the winter kill. She seems to be doing just fine. She didn’t bloom for me at all last year, I don’t think, but it was her first year, so I have high hopes for her this year.

There are chives coming up all over this bed as well, and I pulled a bunch of them out. It’s sort of funny to have all of these invasive plants fighting it out in this bed with such horrible soil in it. Frank had spent much of the day sifting compost to be spread, and we got this whole bed covered in at least an inch, doing what we can to improve it.

I think I will continue putting my glads in this bed, but it’s still too early to plant them. I think it’ll be a couple of more weeks before it’s safe to put them out.

All in all, I think starting to work on one of these large beds while not meaning to really do it made it go much faster, and it was much less daunting that way. I do want to start back at the front and progress around the yard, though, rather than willy-nilly picking a bed to work on. I have absolutely no discipline, though! I’m so easily distracted from my plans.

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