Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Spring Planting and Pruning on The North Coast

This past weekend was a race against the rain as I went out into the garden early to ward off the rainy afternoon forecast. As it turns out the rain didn't hit until that evening. Still I got plenty done in the hours I spent outside. I started off planting bulbs I had ready to go into the garden. The first bulb was a dahlia, the coloring is a deep purple with white tips, very pretty. I planted the dahlia next to the roses and passionflower vines on the front yard fence. I planted two dahlias last year and they didn't come up so hopefully this sunny location will do the trick. This dahlia is supposed to produce up to 18 flowers on the one plant.

Next I trimmed the roses since they are shooting up spurts of growth for spring. I cut the branches that were growing high above the rest of the plant back as far as I could. No flowers on these branches so its no problem to cut them back that far. The lines of the three rose bushes looked better after a trim, and the little pink roses are budding and starting to bloom on all three bushes.

Next on the list was the planting of four summer lilies. There were two lilies to each box of bulbs, one of white Peruvian lilies and the other pink Spider lilies. I spaced them out with a pink and a white then another pink and a white lily at the base of the back yard deck under the pink jasmine vines. From where I sit under my green covered arbor I will be able to see these new lilies when they bloom. Both varieties of lilies have swirling shaped flowers so they should be stunning when in bloom. Next I planted 5 lily of the valley pips. I tried planting lily of the valley last year and they did not come up, sometimes the cheapy bulbs from the local store are a hit or a miss. I planted the pips in a shadier area under the camellia, hopefully the shady spot will help these tiny flowers grow well.

I have been meaning to plant the Thymifolia fuchsia I had rooted from the original plant and finally planted it opposite of the original plant under the holly trees. I almost removed the original plant after two years of minimal growth then suddenly the plant took off. It will probably take a few years for this new plant to grow big, the same as the original plant, so I will have to be patient.

My final task outside on Saturday was to cut down another of the butterfly bushes. There was a good foot of new growth already on the plant, so they are in full growth mode now. I cut back the second of the magenta butterfly bushes, it filled the garden waste bin about two-thirds full. Next are the three purple butterfly bushes, one light lavender and two dark purple varieties. Luckily these butterfly bushes are smaller than the magenta varieties so they should take a little less time to trim up. Let's hope the rains stay away next weekend so we can get another one or two trimmed up for late summer bloom on the north coast.

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