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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Friday Work

Well, in spite of having several flats of annuals from seeds, I looked at the total coverage and saw I was short.  So I looked at the most successful perennials here and ordered more of most.  Some are just too expensive to order more of.  Beware "specials" because they get costly to get more of in further years!  I have 3 Brunerra that I bought cheap once and now they cost $16 each!!!

I will have spots about 100 sq ft each of Stokesia, Troillus, Veronica, and Oriental Lillies.  That doesn't include the large areas I already have of ruddbeckia, coneflowers, astilbes, and asters.

I'm killing the Salvia "Purple Knockout".  They are so invasive they are in the lawn.  OK flower but too much trouble.  I'm surprised the world isn't covered in them.  They are worse than dandelions.

I've been weeding actively.  The bane of my yard is the Mock Strawberry.  I pull them up constantly, but they are small and so numerous.  I probably can't ever eliminate them.  But I can reduce them with effort.  They are like miniature dandelions; there are always some around.  I spent the whole day pulling up those Mock Strawberries.  6 hours!  And there are more scattered all over the back yard.

The Baptisia are finally coming up.  Lovely large flowering plants.  They take a few years to get established but I am seeing multiple stems now.  Should be spectacular in July.  Given how big they grow each year, I better give them extra fertilizer.

The butterfly bushes are coming along well.  It feels odd to cut them down so much each early Soring.  They probably need extra fertilizer too.  The butterflies just swarm them, so it is worth it.

Hey, here's a neat trick.  I learned this 10 years ago.  When you buy carrots that have a little leafy growth on top, cut the top off 1" and just stick the top into the ground.  It will grow the second year growth.  Why?  Because Black Swallowtail butterflies love them.  They lay eggs on the stalks and the caterpillars eat the plant.  The carrot isn't growing a root carrot the 2nd year, so no harm done.  It's just for the butterflies.

And I saw my first hummingbird of the season 2 days ago.  Yay! I had feeders out for 2 weeks.  Well, better earlier than later...  Don't want the little hummers to arrive and find no food.


Jacqueline said...

Your yard is going to be so lovely with all the colorful blooms and butterfly bushes sound delightful...Glad the hummingbirds are back.

Alasandra said...

I spotted a ruby throated hummingbird last week, earlier then I expect. Poor thing found empty feeders, but they are full now.

Anonymous said...

I'm gonna leave my leftover carrots int he gorund and move some to flwoer beds. Good tip.

da bear