Monday, August 17, 2009

Many hands make light(ish) work!

Saturday was a volunteer day and I got a LOT of help, and a LOT done as a result!

First came Josh. He and I have chatted via email and he brought with him some great plants: Bromeliads (Aechmea), Aeoniums and poppy seeds of some exotic red/purple type! Not only that but he planted the bromeliads on the spot. Being the cheeky type I asked if he'd help me rearrange the rear succulent bed and boy did he ever! We removed about 8 plants and replanted them in better spots, as well as adding Opuntias and Agaves. It looks about a million times better, as you can see from the before and after, above. Then his partner Andrew came by with their parrot Dexter and dog whose name begins with a "C" but I can't remember it due to being bowled over by his cute spaniel-ish ways! After that, Josh planted a Mahonia aquifolium and did some weeding. Awesome.

Rick came by and ferried a lot of water down to the sunflowers, which I know is a real pain. I feel horrifically guilty for planting them down the block, and grateful to Rick for tending to them. They are looking amazing though... I must get some photos of them. I also prepared the rest of the lavender hedge area for his lavenders, and watered the entire hedge.

Next came Billie who got stuck in to the weeding and also Maria who did the same, both filling an entire wheelbarrow with weeds. Rock on! Finding knowledgeable weeders is hard: it's not fun work all the time, so I really appreciate anyone who can pull weeds :)

Stalwart plant hunter John also dropped by with some exotic Opuntias. I made him plant one right away as unless I do things like that I will never stop having plants to plant. On the other hand, what a nice problem to have!

So between all this, chats with Sage, Robert, and Gary, and watering, deadheading, weeding, and all that stuff... it was a busy day!













Sunday was a little quieter: I arrived in the garden to find some lovely big lavenders from Rick waiting in the shade of a tree! I had one Lavandula stoechas "Boysenberry Ruffles" (Spanish Lavender) from the Lowes sale rack and that, combined with the many Lavandula pannata var. buchii (Jagged Lavender) and other unlabeled (probably French) lavenders combined to make exactly the right number to complete the hedge!

I immediately dug holes and planted them and voila! (above) ! I must say I think it looks great, and when the lavenders grow it will be quite a sight (and scent) to behold. Thanks Rick for your fantastic donation!

Then I moved some mulch, deadheaded Cannas, Dianthus, Osteospermums, and admired our Scarlet Flax (Linum grandoflorum var. rubrum, left) , and was in the middle of planting a row of gorgeous ginger roots sneakily left in the garden the night before by Kepa (thanks Kepa!) when Dino and Jason came over to ask if I wanted some plants. I was reticent - I am backed up on planting but my simple greed and excitement overcame that pretty quickly as I remembered the amazing Haemanthus bulbs they gave me before.

Pretty soon they were wheeling handcarts full of containers over to the garden - and gorgeous big ones at that! I don't have exact IDs on all of them but they included a nice big Crassula "Golum", a large Kalanchoe tomentosa (Panda Ears or Chocolate Soldier)
Aeoniums, big tall lilies of some type underplanted with Muscari and daffodil bulbs and two actual apple trees. These last two sadly may need to be rehomed as I explained to them Caltrans' rules about trees and edibles, but the rest are fantastic and I am going to place them carefully for best effect. Thanks guys! What a treat!

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