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Monday, November 28, 2016

Got Stuff Done

Its been a working week. 

I planted 250 daffodils.   And I did it RIGHT.  I have a drill auger that gets down about 8".  I tossed loose soil back in the holes, set down the bulbs, filled the holes with 50/50 topsoil/compost, and sprinkled 0-6-6 N-P-K fertilizer on the top to seep down over the winter.

100 of them were to fill in the area not planted last Fall.  Guesing where the planted ones were was done by pictures I took last Spring.  I lined up the pictures using background landmarks.  I got it very close.  I only augered up ond existing bulb.  And I filled in the entire unplanted area.  So next Spring should be good.

But that left 150 Hillstar daffs.  I REALLY over-estimated the number of daffs I needed to fill the existing bed.  So where to put the Hillstars? 

Oho!  I have never found a good plant to use as the border for my fence-side flowerbed.  The Dusty Millers died, the annuals had to be replanted each year, and the crocuses got eaten by the voles .  So the Hillstars went into the border.
 Image result for hillstar daffodil
I came up 5' short, but that's OK, I'll fill in.

Meanwhile, I got 2 bucketloads of 50/50 topsoil/compost from the local nursery (about 2 cubic yards).  My framed beds settled since I filled them the first time last year.  That was some work moving the stuff from the trailer to the beds. 

Last year, I shoveled it from the trailer to a yard cart towed by the riding mowers them shoveled it into buckets to carry and dump into the framed beds.  That was a real pain. 

So this time, I shoveled the mix from the trailer into buckets I loaded into the yard cart and drove the trailer to the framed beds.  Then carried the buckets to the beds.  Much easier.  I have 3/4 moved.

And I need to empty the trailer.  One tire finally just broke after 15 years - rubber fatigue!

And now I have a real problem.  I can't drive the trailer to a repair place with a flat tire, and the bolts on the wheels are 15 years of rust.  ACK!

Well, I have to remove the tire (both actually - the other tire has to be about to fail).  I'll soak the wheel bolts in Liquid Wrench (a lubricating oil that claims to loosen rust), heat the bolts to cause uneven expansion that might loosen the rust connection, and then use an air-powered impact wrench to finally break the nuts free.


And I need the trailer to be working again soon to pick up a mower I couldn't get started and brought to a repair shop...  So that I can mow down some backyard brambles.  So that I can lant 5 specimen trees in the backyard.

Everything is connected.  Empty the trailer, remove and replace the tires, pick up the mower, rent a brush-cutter (hauled on the trailer), use the mower to cut the bramble stubs lower, dig holes for the specimen tree saplings, keep the brambles cut low until they die, and surround the saplings with old carpet so the roots don't have competition until they grow tall enough in a few years to shade out the ivy.

I had the whole backyard cleared out 5 years ago, and I let it go for 2 years.  I'm paying for that lapse now!

Next year is going to be killing all the wild ivy, the unknown vines, and the mock strawberries.

The good news is that I learned how to use my battery-powered string trimmer properly.  Used hard at an angle, it can clear weeds to ground level.  It gets long stringy grass wrapped around it if I'm not careful, and that drove me crazy at first unwrapping them.  But I learned how to disassemble the head in 20 seconds and slide all the wrapped grass right off. 

Experience is wonderful!

Now I think I might be ready to use the gas-powered steel blade whacker on the briars and brambles in the far back yard...  Without losing a foot in the process. 

1 comment:

Megan said...

Sounds like you've been working both mind and body, Mark - figuring out solutions and then implementing them. Looking forward to seeing those daffs!

Sydney, Australia