Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Racing Against The Rainy Season In The Garden

When you live on the North Coast in Humboldt County, California, you know to take advantage of any rainless days in fall and winter by heading out to the garden. It has been raining pretty much most days of the week since late October. With my busy schedule I just missed getting out in the garden to do my winter trimming and the rainy season started earlier than usual. Now a few months later we finally have some sun in January, enough time to do some quick trimming and mowing.

The first order of business was mowing the front and back lawns, which were very overgrown since we didn't get a final mowing in before the rains took over. There were heaps of grass piles that needed to be swept up after the mowing was completed, enough to take up a good amount of time for our afternoon's work. I did a quick trim up of the hedge, cutting only the tallest stems of the privet back by hand. Its a pain to do, but overall quicker and easier than doing the full trim with the hedge trimmer for now. We kept the hedge trimmed back well during spring and summer, but just missed the final trim back before the rains began.

I took some time to trim up the front yard heaths and heathers of their dried up flowers to insure they have new blooms for the coming year. Most of my heathers are fall and winter bloomers, with a few spring and summer bloomers mixed in. I was careful not to cut any lower than the last dried flower bloom, if you cut into the center of the hard wood it make take a season or more for the plant to recover and bloom again. The small, delicate curved trimmer my husband gave me as a gift is the perfect tool for trimming up my favorite heather plants, fitting right into the small stems of the heaths and heathers with ease. I managed to trim back most of the plants in the front yard this session, the plants in the back may have to wait until the next sunny weekend.

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