Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Water, water everywhere...

Last night I needed a break from the rat race, so I went to the garden and sat in the corner, hugging myself and rocking back and forth.

Not really. But I felt like it!

Instead I did a bit of twig weaving - at least, until my twine ran out. I love twig weaving... it's crafty, it's recycling, it's quick and easy and relaxing and it protects the plants. Awww.

I met some neighbors from down the street - Molly and Steve. Molly is going to water the sunflowers! Happy little sunflowers - they have been soldiering on in the desert down at Mariposa, but she's going to give 'em some love. Thanks Molly! She even had photos of her own plants on her phone. See, I'm not the only one who does that. Though it did take a full 24 hours for me to realise some people would think that was odd.

This morning Caltrans were back at the garden, poised for more mischief. As I was late for work (again) and running perilously low on patience, I marched over and told them what to do Very Clearly. Gave them my card. Told them to tell their boss to call me. Waggled my finger at them so they would know I meant it. Strutted away before they could argue. Left a snappish message for the boss man. Hiss! Spit!

Their boss called when I got to work, and took my directives quite well, considering I'm nobody and he "owns" the land (!) So when I get home I expect those sprinklers that they put in in the middle of paths to be gone. And the flooded part in front of the middle beds to be dry. Or... else!

I'm doing a few breathing exercises to prepare me... and going to get some branches with John tonight... must buy more twine....

Update: John kindly helped get 3 truckloads of branches. All my wildest twig-weaving fantasies come true! I also noticed Leah had been by with some plant and branch donations. Thanks guys! I'd better get busy this weekend taking care of those things.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Yet another scorcher...

Hot again today so I stayed indoors and potted up about 60 Asters (Callistephus chinensis) ... I made the mistake of planting several seeds per cell in the flat, thinking some might fail, and of course the damn things all came up. So being a person who hates waste, and is a bit soft-hearted to boot, I had to spend hours carefully separating out the roots of each little seedling and potting them all up in individual cells, instead of just yanking out the weaklings and throwing them away. I now have 136 individual Asters!

I'll take some to the plant swap next month to exchange for something... else... and the rest can grow on for the garden, and to sell at the Garden Tour in September.

I need to propagate something else for that sale too - any suggestions?

I'm going to a bit later to water the areas that the sprinklers missed... Matt watered the sunflowers today, too.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Another hot day?

When you live in San Francisco people often complain about the weather. Too cold! Too rainy!

Well I'm here as a gardener to tell you that when you spend time in P. Garden it's often too hot! Not rainy enough!


This morning at 7.30am the sprinklers were going off and I was so annoyed by the mess they were making that I went over and switched one off, and diverted another to at least sprinkle something useful. I'd spoken to Jack at Caltrans yesterday about my lack of enthusiasm for the job done there (thanks Jes for encouraging me), and he said he'd come out on Monday to meet me and talk about it all. OK then.

Today we staked the yellow standard rose, and sprayed the white one for blackspot. Sprayed a Sedum for aphids. And staked the remaining Cordyline. Took the beheaded one's tip in the house - maybe it will root. Weeded the Aloe area - again. Planted some succulents as ground cover there conveniently brought today by Leah. She also brought another ground cover plant (Myoporum spp.) for the steps (already planted) some sage, 2 big, lovely blue Agaves and a bucket o'pups too!

We also pulled out all the California poppies in the front bed that were rotted by excess water (pic above of the bed now). Grrr. Now I am going to have to think of a good perennial, dog-proof, flowering plant to put in - perhaps the Gaillardias will get drafted from the Canna bed to fill the gap.

We were also visited by Max who made a NICE donation to the bench fund, which he politely waited to do until after I told him the saga of looking for the correct wood, correct dimensions, etc etc etc... Ha! So now I have no mas excusas. Let's see that bench!

Shortly after Max came by Audrey and Peter from the Potrero Hill Garden Club dropped by. They asked me if P Garden would like to participate in the first ever Potrero Hill Garden Tour, to benefit the Potrero Library Campaign. Heck yeah! It's Sunday September 13th, so I'll need to get organized if I want to sell some plants at the tour.

Should be fun!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


This morning the garden is wet in areas it's not supposed to be wet (cacti and succulents), dry in areas that could use some water, and oh joy: someone lopped the top off one of the Cordylines in the barrels at the front entrance.

I am feeling quite down about all this. :(

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More drama

This morning as I was scrambling out the door to work I was stopped in my tracks by the sight of three Caltrans workers with shovels, digging enthusiastically in the borders. I hurried over and tried really hard to get my message ("what the Heck are you Doing in Our Garden!") across without actually saying those words.

I talk to Ricky, who was nice. They are digging up the bubblers (pipes installed a long time ago) and attaching 4 sprinklers. Ricky says he has heard I don't want sprinklers, and I mention to him about the, you know, drought we're having...? and the, you know, wastefulness of sprinklers?

I call Ricky's boss again, twice. Leave message. Again. I try to sound un-frantic. I probably fail. I have to go to work... argh... Nice Ricky is digging up daffodil bulbs... *sob*

I get to work and Jack, Ricky's boss calls back. Apparently, all this is in order to test a new satellite-controlled sprinkler system for the city. They tried to test it on the "triangle" (by the bus stop) above the "circle" (P. Garden) but it wasn't a big enough area. They need to be able to see the sprinklers sprinkling, 3 times a week. If I hate the sprinklers they will remove them after the test (of unknown duration) but in the meantime, suck it up, buttercup!

I tell Jack that some plants will actually die if they get sprinkled that much - cacti etc. He says he'll call the guys to tell them. He's really nice too. I can tell he things I'm nuts, but it's OK. He says the guys are not supposed to be digging up plants. He says the garden is really pretty :)

Gary calls and says he will keep an eye on things. So I am stuck at work til lunchtime, when I will dash home to see... the aftermath.


Went home at lunchtime. The guys had uncovered about a dozen bubblers. The garden flooded in some areas. I asked them to add a sprinkler under one of the cherry trees (hey, might as well...) and as I saw them leave the sprinklers were all running full blast in the hot sun (burned plants anyone?) - even on areas with cacti. *sigh*

They said they'll put the sprinklers on at about 1am for 20 mins, about 3 times a week. I'm not sure what use it will be having the leaves sprayed and the water not penetrating the mulch. We'll see!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Plant profile: Crocosmia

Year 1: measly flower
Crocosmias are a small genus of plants related to the iris. They usually pop up in the spring, with lots of tall, spiky leaves, followed by the flowers. By summer here in dry San Francisco they'll have died back for the year. We have one cultivar, Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora "Lucifer" flowering right now though - it's probably confused! Check out the two clumps of fiery red spikes in the "red bed" at the top of the garden (and photo, left)

Latin name: Crocosmia spp. ("kro-KOZ-me-ah")
Common name: Montbretia
Originally from: The grasslands of Cape Floristic Region, South Africa.
Blooms: Yellow, orange to deep red flowers appear at the tips of long, arching spikes.
Light: Full sun to light shade.
Water: Drought tolerant, but does best with some water.
Where to find in P. Garden: Left bed, red bed, and right back bed.

Crocosmias were probably brought to the UK by Scottish plant collector James Niven in about 1812. He discovered them in Namaqualand, S. Africa, and on his second botanizing trip returned with plants for Empress Josephine Buonaparte of France. Fancy! English bulb expert William Herbert apparently went on to grow the corms (rooty, bulby things Crocosmias grow from) for 25 years before he finally got one to flower by throwing some manure on it in the autumn of 1836.

Year 2: prolific clump
It is this type of perseverance that makes me agog. I have been cursing that all I have is 2 measly clumps of flowers after a scant 6 months of willing my Crocosmias to grow, and this guy resisted the urge to throw his Crocosmias on the compost heap for 25 years! Although, reading between the lines I bet I know what really happened - one day in a fit of annoyance he dumped the compost heap on the Corocosmias. Presto magico - flowers.

There's a lesson in there somewhere. Something to do with poo.

We also have yellow Crocosmias in the left bed - "George Davidson" is the cultivar. It seems to be sulking due to lack of water in the left bed but we'll see what it comes up with this year.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Mixed bag

Today I went back to the same Mission alley as last week to pick up another bunch of plants from a Craigslist posting. This time what had been left on the street was an unidentified shrub* (apparently it has blue flowers?) and a trash bag full of bits of succulent. Hey OK, it was free!

I went home and pruned and planted the sad-looking shrub (good luck, mate!) and then went through the bag. It yielded 3-4 types of Aeonium, various Crassulas (including a "Gollum" and a Crassula falcata!) a Sedum, a Euphorbia cactus (I think) 2 Aloes and a variegated Agave! All tiny, but rooted and ready to rock. I poked them into various niches, admired several types of butterflies in the garden (above, Swallowtail with Buddleja - sorry for the low resolution; butterflies are twitchy), and went in to escape the sun.

Later this evening Matt and I watered everything thoroughly for the week, still a 2 hour job despite the efforts of Caltrans workers (who opened up the bubblers that all now leak rather impressively, effectively watering some areas....)

The smell of a lone Brugmasia bloom was perfuming the air, and our neighborhood mockingbird was warbling his head off in a quite melodious way. The first day of summer. Ahhh!

*This has gone on to reward my efforts to save it and grow some new leaves and a blue flower - it's a Lycianthes rantonnetii (Blue Potato Bush)!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Warm and sunny and further diggings

Above left: Gazania rigens "Talent" (Treasure Flower)
Above right: Salvia argentea blooming

It appears our friends from Caltrans have been in the garden again this morning: the second water junction box was exposed, and this time some plants got mashed - I moved four of them to a safer spot.

When I switched on the water I discovered that they must have turned on the bubblers in other arts of the garden - several pipes that had been sealed shut started leaking water. Could be useful!

I planted all the plants from yesterday's Sloat haul today, as well as trimming various things, moving all the Oenothera versicolor "Sunset Blvd." (Evening Primrose) to one spot and all the Silene coronaria "Gardener's World" (Rose Campion) to another (Group! Group! Be like IKEA! Everything looks better en masse!)

Below left: Crocosmia "Lucifer" blooming for the first time.
Below right, from front: Osteospermum "Margarita Yellow Improved", Cynara cardunculus (Cardoon), Helichrysum italicum (Curry Plant, Immortelle.)

Below left: A closer look at that Osteospermum.
Below right: Achillea "Walter Funke" just starting to bloom.

Friday, June 19, 2009

New menu, Sloat sale, and minor drama

Let's get straight to the minor drama - you know you want to hear about it more than some Latin plant names!

Yesterday while I was at work Matt called me. "There's someone in the garden, with a shovel" he said. *gasp* Apparently our neighbor Barbara spied some Caltrans workers in the garden, pointing and looking dangerous... She called her hubby Sage. He called Matt. Matt called me. Immediately I called Annelle (Didn't we used to play a game like this when I was a kid?) and she said she would go out and see what was up. Maybe next time we can cut out the four middle men and I can give Barbara a megaphone so she can yell at people right out of her window, like a booming voice from the sky. "Drop that shovel, mortal!" :P

Anywho, Annelle went out and gave them men a death stare. Apparently this worked, and they scampered away. She called me to fill me in the situation. I was jittery. Would Caltrans find some reason to punish me for gardening incorrectly?

After work I scurried home to inspect everything. Plant roll call. Is everyone OK? Did they hurt you? (tears, hugs) Looks like they dug out one of the water junction boxes which I had carefully not planted anything on top of just in case. They dumped the dirt on top of a scared Gaillardia, but I rescued it. Aside from that, they seem to have been very careful. H'mmm...

Then this morning Gary sent me a picture of the lot from before the garden, and pretended that Caltrans had scraped P. Garden off the face of the earth, as a joke. Waaah! Shortly after, he emailed to say "Ricky from Caltrans" dropped by, and apparently:

"He is working on getting the watering system in place. In the mean time he showed me how to turn on all the bubblers on the lot. I'll show you. He also gave me some fittings to set up a hose by the trees. He is very impressed with the garden. He was thinking of using sprinklers on timers. I mentioned drip hose. He said you should contact his boss to discuss what Caltrans should put in."

Stupendous! So I have ceased palpitating, and am now experiencing gardening joy again. *phew*

In other news, recently I had been wondering if I should buy and host a domain for the garden. Sadly www.pennsylvaniagarden.com is already taken (by some people in Pennsylvania! Who garden! Pshaw!) and to be honest, yet another website to design, build, maintain and pay for is not high on my wishlist. So, the blog stays - it's free and easy to use.

Yesterday I rearranged the info on this site so it performs a little more like a website, and somewhat less like a straight list of blog posts. I added a menu to the top of the right column, with sections that hopefully will answer questions people have about the garden. If you have suggestions, additions or corrections, let me know.

This morning I got up early again to head out to the Sloat Garden Center sale. We arrived at 7.55am and got in line. It was buy one, get one free 4" perennials and succulents, and we got eight additions to the garden:

- Artemisia x absinthum "Powis Castle" (Wormwood) (shouldn't that be "Powys"?)
- Sedum rupestre "Lemon Coral"
- Lantana montevidensis "New Gold"
- Crassula pellucida
- Adromischus cristatus (Crinkleleaf plant)
- Kalanchoe bracteata "Silvermint"
- Osteospermum "Margarita Yellow Improved" (we got two - one is cream, the other yellow - wonder how they'll turn out)

I managed to resist buying Cupheas, Pennisetums, Kniphofias, all manner of clever Salvias and of course could have come home with several dozen cute Aloes and so on... but I am trying to keep the spending down (honest!). 4" plants certainly take a while to grow big, and are more prone to damage from feet and paws, but they're in our price range. Note To Self: Stay strong!

Matt also got three big glazed ceramic pots for the three cactus tips we have rooting in the living room. Once they are rooted, I warned him, you will have to let them go into the garden. I think he thinks we can talk about that when the time comes... hah!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Early start

For some reason I got up at 5.30am today so I decided to go and investigate some branches that John told me about, piled up by Esprit Park. Got two loads. Amazing what will get me excited these days!

This evening I planted some sage and violets, and met lovely neighbors Kyle and Hector.

Gratuitous picture of a flowering Canna above!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Windy evening

Popped out for a bit of twig weaving tonight - all my current branches are used up and it made about 4 yards along the Canna bed. I need enough to do the rest of that strip, up to the dog waste tub, and along the back of the "red bed" (top strip). Then I can rest. I think the beds close to the slope can wait as people don't often walk down there.

I planted two Helichrysum petiolare "Lemon Licorice" next to a dark Phormium, and I think it looks quite fetching (above).

Finally I potted up some Aster seedlings in the house. OK, they're supposed to be Asters... but, are they?* The seeds came from a friend in Tasmania. As you can see above they sprouted really well, and I'm all out of pots to accommodate them, after potting about 20 of them! Perhaps I can trade the leftovers for something else with a Craigslister...

That's all!

* Yes, apparently they are, according to Google images. (Callistephus chinensis)

Plant profile: Sedum

Above left: Sedum rubrotinctum "Jelly Beans" or "Pork and Beans"
Above right: Sedum telephium "Autumn Delight"

Above left: Sedum nevii "Silver Frost"
Above right: Sedum telephium ssp. ruprechtii "Hab Grey"

Above left: Sedum spectabile "Neon"
Above right: Sedum spathulifolium "Cape Blanco" (probably)

Sedums comprise about 400 species of leafy succulents, found throughout the northern hemisphere, varying from annual and creeping herbs to shrubs. When I was a kid we had a Sedum shrub by the house and I wasn't very fond of it's dusty pink, broccoli-like flowers. Probably because I didn't like broccoli! However, I've since come to appreciate Sedums because they're tough, easy to propagate and coming in all sorts of interesting leaf colors. We have about 10 species in P. Garden.

Latin name: Sedum spp. ("SEED-um")
Common name: Various names, but both Sedum and Stonecrop are often used.
Originally from: The old and new world, in the northern hemisphere.
Blooms: From yellow to neon pink, all with 5 petals.
Light: Full sun to light shade.
Water: Drought tolerant, but does best with some water.
Where to find in P. Garden: Low, creeping versions along the front of the cactus wall, small shrubs in the top/middle, front/round and left beds.

Above left: Sedum makinoi (Golden Japanese Sedum)
Above right: Sedum rupestre "Angelina"

Above left: Sedum spathulifolium ssp. pruinosum "Carnera" (probably)
Above right: An unnamed dark red Sedum (I love this one!)
Below: Sedum spirium "Voodoo"

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Arch and sparkle!

An old coworker of mine, in a far distant retail job, once told me the secret to sales: show the object for sale to the customer, touch the object, and "arch and sparkle!" In other works, assume a pose and expression of thrilledness, purely derived from proximity to the item for sale.

Today, there was a lot of similar "arch and sparkling" going on at P. Garden, mostly due to the excitement we got from helping Our Fearless Metalwork Artist (can we name him?) to install the brand-new-and-shiny garden arch!

8am this morning I was to be found in the Mission picking up some freebie plants (Craigslist posting forwarded to me by both John and Joan, separately!):

- 1 Ginger (Latin name unknown)
- 6 Aeoniums
- Various small bits of succulent and cactus

On arriving home I couldn't help but notice a large truck parked outside P. Garden... it turned out to be our friend, busily digging a hole for one of the posts for the arch! I gulped down my coffee and set to work digging too.... pretty soon Matt joined us, and before you know it, both posts are in. Then came the moving of the top part which weighed a lot. I was worried it would fall off and smash me flat, but no, we made it - the arch is up! Our friend went off to get his welding equipment, and on returning Jim allowed him to use his power to attach the top part.

It even has "PG" welded to it, which was painted a lovely copper color so it stands out, and the attention to detail in installing it went as far as making sure the wine barrel planters were level too. Shame the plants in them are wonky!

Lots of people stopped by to admire it - it is a huge hit. It's absolutely beautiful and I'm just thrilled at the look of our entranceway now! All that is left to do is pick the perfect, scented vine to climb up it.

We also had help in the garden today from Leah, who weeded the entire dog area as well as pruning many scraggly areas: the garden looks 1000% better, and I must get more mulch to prevent it from reverting to a weed pile.

Amar and his lovely wife Liza (sp?) came too, and they moved some wayward daffodils to a much better spot, as well as making a good start on some twig weaving. I must say it's not fair to ask a pregnant woman to help in the garden, but there you go - I'm a slave driver!

Other tasks that got done included moving a Penstemon, a Cosmos and an Acorus gramineus "Minimus Aureus" and of course a lot of weeding.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Cactus show, and more

Today we went to the San Francisco Succulent and Cactus Society show in Golden Gate Park. Matt decided to get some tiny succulents for his vertical garden project, and I got some small ground cover-ish things:

Sedum nevii "Silver Frost"
Sedum makinoi (Golden Japanese Sedum)
Senecio haworthii
Senecio mandraliscae

The we went and planted them. I also sprayed the white rose for blackspot, trimmed and weeded and poked around in general. Right after we got really hungry and were about to leave, Leah dropped by, with planty donations! Oh, I felt so bad leaving her but we had to go... we left her, guiltily, pruning away. Thanks Leah!

Later that evening, I transplanted 16 Asters that I grew from seed into 4" pots, and we watered the whole garden. Matt planted 7-8 clumps of creeping thyme, and some Sisyrinchium californicum (Yellow-Eyed Grass) by the steps and I prepped the two big Yucca cuttings to be ready to plant inside by removing all the lower leaves.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Quiet week, in fact!

Sort of a quiet week - I've been working a lot. However, I did manage to:

- Plant 2 Cosmos, 1 Lantana camera, 1 Senecio kleiniiformis.
- Water them, and the other recent newbies.
- Meet a guy who was out running and donated $20 (Thanks Amar!) and a very nice couple from the Dogpatch area.
- Move some bricks into the base of the metal cabinet to stop it falling over (ouch!)
- With John's help, pick up two huge Yucca branches donated by Elizabeth (thanks guys!)

I'm making plans for the weekend. If anyone's up for gardening I'll be at the garden Sunday morning for sure, in and out on Saturday. :)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Quiet Sunday

On Sunday we planned to simply water for the week. So we got up and watered. Weeded. Collected a few Arctotis seeds. Nothing strenuous.

Then I got an email from Alison - would I like some Jade Plants, already dug up, and delivered? Shockingly lazy person that I am, of course I said yes (perfect for the back slope's succulent garden).

We went to the barn and on the way home had a hankering to see what was cheap and cheerful at Lowes. Matt wanted some Lantanas, too. Anyway, by some devious means they are able to produce 4" pots of useful stuff for about $2.50... Here's what we could not turn down:

- 4 Lantana camera (Lantana - red/orange/yellow)
- 1 Lantana camera (Lantana - purple)
- 1 Senecio kleiniiformis
- 2 Thymus praecox "Pink Chintz" (Thyme)
- 2 Cosmos bipinnatus (Cosmos)

Thyme for the steps, Lantanas for the wine barrel planters, Cosmos for the big middle bed, and so on. More holes to dig...!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Steps, part deux

Today we finished the steps. I put black plastic under the bricks, and finished bricking the whole stairway. Gary cut off the one bit of rebar that was sticking up. It's done! Phew.

Joan dropped by and we had a lovely chat. If we had our bench done we could have chatted all day!

We also planted some plants that had been waiting:

- 4 Yucca flaccida "Garland's Gold" in one huge pot, from John
- 1 Doryanthes palmeri (Spear Lily) - John again
- 1 Campanula portenschlagiana (Dalmation Bellflower) "Get Mee" from my lovely friend Lise.
1 Bougainvillea - a nice golden yellow-colored one.

Quick watering for this week's new plants, and we are done. Now, what shall we plant by the steps...?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Plant profile: Eschscholzia and other poppies

What bright orange flower is the official flower of California? Hint: April 6 is California Poppy Day.

It was selected as the state flower by the California State Floral Society in December 1890, winning out over the Mariposa lily (genus Calochortus) and the Matilija poppy (Romneya coulteri) by a landslide. Oh dear - Matilija fans (ie Matt) not amused...

There are several subspecies - we've seen very small, yellow versions in Morro Bay, compared to the bigger, orange versions here in San Francisco.

Latin name: Eschscholzia californica ("eshz-KOL-zee-ah kal-ee-FOR-nik-ah")
Common name: California poppy
Originally from: Well, um, California! Officially, the western United States throughout California, extending to Oregon, southern Washington, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and in Mexico in Sonora and northwest Baja California.
Blooms: February to September, and always covered in bees.
Light: Full sun.
Water: Drought tolerant - in fact, they go floppy if you water them too much!
Where to find in P. Garden: Front beds, top bed and top middle bed.

By the off ramp
I got a big packet of California poppy seeds and sprinkled them liberally in the garden. Quickly, small plants emerged. Assuming they were weeds, I just as quickly pulled them out! Oops. But many survived, and after weeks of watching they started to bloom. Talk about a show! These things are seriously good bang for your buck - a "fling 'em and forget 'em" seed. I've added red California poppy seeds to the top bed too, and "White Linen" in the left bed. Can't wait to see those bloom.

Some clever gardeners have cultivated other various colors, but those seeds didn't germinate for me due to lack of watering I suppose. Bah. Also worth noting is that the poppies hate to be moved with a burning, fiery passion, and will die no matter how careful you are. Lesson learned.

"White Linen"
Interesting note from Wikipedia: "A common misconception associated with the plant, because of its status as a state flower, is that the cutting or damaging of the California poppy is illegal. There is no such law in California, outside of state law that makes it a misdemeanor to cut or remove any plant growing on state or county highways or public lands except by authorized government employees and contractors; it is also against the law to remove plants on private property without the permission of the owner (Cal. Penal Code Section 384a) California Penal Code."

Other plants that are also commonly known as poppies that we have in the garden are the Flanders poppy (left, Papaver rhoeas - red with a black center, in the front bed) and Matilija poppy (Romneya coulteri - white with a yellow center, like a fried egg, and very tall (left bed).

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Storage solution

The back area of the garden has been a storage zone (i.e. mess) for a while now - hard to get to, out of sight (more or less) - it's where all the empty pots, unused bricks and so on go. But what about garden tools? So stealable, yet too dirty to keep in the house. They have been living variously in the back of the car or hidden under the compost pile (!)

So, I have been looking out for a metal storage cabinet to keep stuff in, and recently found one on craigslist.org. We went to buy it, but sadly, the owner left it on the street that day and oops, someone ran off with it. He said he'd email when he was ready to sell his other one... and was very apologetic. Happily, on Monday he emailed, and last night we went to pick up the other cabinet for $60. I quicky rearranged the storage area to accommodate it, and leveled the spot a bit.

It is quite large, so getting it into the back of the garden in the dark was an adventure, but luckily Matt is a strapping lad and did it almost all on his own. Now we just have to figure out how to make it more secure (Gary says that a cable wrapped around with padlock is the way to go) and figure out whether or not to paint it now, or wait til it gets tagged to do that... urban garden joy!

Today my half price sale order from Bluestone Perennials in Ohio came in the mail. First time I've ordered plants online, and probably the last. While they were in good shape, they're all quite small (3-4" pots) and if I'd paid full price I'd be quite disappointed I think. However, 18 plants for about $3.50 each is OK. I got:

- 3 Achillea millefolium "Walter Funke"
- 3 Armeria pseudarmeria "Joystick Lilac" (Sea Thrift)
- 3 Festuca glauca (Blue Fescue)
- 3 Kniphofia uvaria "Flamenco"
- 3 Oenothera versicolor "Sunset Blvd." (Evening Primrose)
- 3 Silene coronaria "Gardener's World" (Rose Campion)

I got them all planted and watered in right away - I hope they hit the ground running!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Where ma hose at? And other assorted wit.

I have been stewing on an idea to raise some funds for the garden, while at the same time having fun. One of the ideas I had was to make a Pennsylvania Garden tee shirt using CafePress.com which would allow me to set a price that allows a $5 or so donation to the garden for every tee bought. Plus, I want a P. Garden shirt!

Some of the slogans I could put on a shirt are listed below, along with a couple of quick design ideas - what do you think? Would you buy one? Any other ideas? Yes, they are all rather silly... surely that's no surprise by now? ;)

I like to play in the dirt.
Wanna see my compost pile?
Pennsylvania Garden. Can you dig it?
Talk dirt to me.
Where my hose at?
Get off your grass and garden!
Runs with pruners.
Garden hoe.
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