The hardest part for me - planting out.

aklindaApril 25, 2012

Mostly because I have to weed my flower beds before I can put the new winter sowed plants out. Things got out of hand last fall because I spent a couple of months on crutches and couldn't weed or maintain the flower beds. Many of the weeds have stickers or spines - plus the bindweed that I can never get rid of. I already planted out about 30 of the winter sown babies in the only raised flower bed I have - the one I can actually scoop a hole in the soil with my hand instead of a pick axe. Today I am pulling all the grass and weeds from about 30 feet of flower bed along my chain link fence (will be about another 70 feet to go after that). This is hard New Mexico clay - even after several years of adding compost, manure and mulching. Probably cramming at least 50 of the winter sowed babies in there. My goal is to cram so many flowers in there they choke out the weeds.

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I know, I know Aklinda. That WSing enthusiasm can sure take a discouraging dive when there is so much to "fix" in the beds before you can plant out. Even though I have battled bindweed, nutsedge, crabgrass, seemingly every weed plight known to man, I can say with certainty that it does get a little bit better each year. But I've got pretty easy, naturally fertile soil with lots of sand and drainage. I can't even imagine trying to do the hard digging that clay soils must require to get to the bottom of a wild onion. You must be exhausted.

This year my biggest "weed" is rudbeckia goldstrum. Love it for late color but it multiples and seeds ridiculously fast. I am bringing old flats full of it into work and giving it away to colleagues who are just starting gardens almost every day for the past week. I remember Karen talking about Verbena Bon becoming an invasive weed and thinking - "oh I love that, it's not too bad here.." Wellllllllll,, now it is. Everywhere.

But after 6? 7? years of WSing, the glorious thing is the places where weeds DO NOT FIT. Where I've got perennials back to back to side to side - tons of square footage that is densely covered. While I look with great admiration at gardens (here and in person) that have nicely spaced plants and room for MULCH in between to set them off, I'll never have that. Too much expensive for all the mulch I'd need, and I do think the weeds would somehow get in.

I wish you access to a hot bath and a nice glass of vino Aklinda! Keep on keeping on.


    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 7:19PM
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Phew - I got half of it done today. I soaked it good yesterday so the weeds would be easier to pull. That's my goal too - flowers so thick the weeds won't grow. The nearly 300 plants I winter sowed will go a long way towards accomplishing that. My neighbor gardens too so I planted extra for her - she'll probably get 100 out of the 300 that I started. Half of her garden is from winter sowed plants that I gave her over the last few years. Going to get up early to do the second half as we are supposed to have 50 mph winds tomorrow. My bicep in my right arm - the arm I use for my mini-pick axe - is all cramped up. It's going to hurt tomorrow for sure.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 10:26PM
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"My goal is to cram so many flowers in there they choke out the weeds."

You GO girl!!! That's how we do it!!! :O)

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 11:02PM
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Aklinda - - if you can take it (not everyone can or should) the 12 hour Aleve works wonders for my garden weary muscles. I take it when I first get in from the garden (6-8pm), gives me a little relief for the next few awake hours and then I go to sleep and wake up and it's kept working, so I am reasonably healed to go out and do it again!

But the nurses in my life have put the fear of god in me about OTC anti- inflamatories being not so good for your liver/kidneys/etc. so I limit myself to the two weekend nights - two pills a week. If I garden after work it's not for very long (the sun goes down..), so I am not really too achy from that and just take a bath.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2012 at 3:20PM
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