Do you want your shrubs to be happy?? Want to water less?? Want your flowerbeds to look pretty?? I've got one word for you - MULCH!! Chris (the Yard Barber, my neighbor) has a source for good, organic mulch and I've been having him and his helpers bring it on for about five years. The improvement has been dramatic. The little pink flowers peeking through are on the Bleeding Heart. He came on later than usual this year.
This beat up stem is my clematis. You might remember how excited I was about what I had going in the corner of the yard. I had visions of a purple clematis spilling all over the fence and trellis, joined by the Debbie Dodd (really the Debbie Saxon) rose, all in pink, with a big stand of red Lucifers in the front. Well, it all got taken out by the innocent looking creature below:
The renters next door have a new puppy which they let run around loose and Poppy got into a fence fight with it. I now have the area barricaded, hoping that it will all recover. One can hope.
In this shot of the first garden, you can see that the potatoes are coming up like crazy, along with the dahlias from last year. The chives look much better after I dug out that huge old clump and gave it some cosmetic surgery.
This is the middle garden with two sowings of lettuce, beets, and broccoli.
The first two rows of green beans are coming up after only a week!! which is a record for me. Usually they take two weeks before they break ground. I'm planting another two rows today, in hopes that that will stagger the harvest, but it usually all comes on at once like gang busters no matter what I do.
I'm really excited to see how this purple pot is going to turn out. This is my first time with a sweet potato vine - the lime green plant on the left. In this pot I've also planted a Pinto Red geranium, Obsession Scarlet Verbena, trailing dark blue lobelia, and white Bacopa. I used this white trailing plant for the first time last year and was very happy with it. It blooms all summer and maintains its good looks, even when it has been accidentally dried out.
I stuck my camera up and got a shot of the begonias coming up in their pot. I also stuck some white and dark blue lobelias up there. This pot was crazy beautiful last summer and I'm hoping for a repeat.
I dumped and cleaned all the deck pots and put new Miracle Gro potting soil in before I planted. Miss CutiePie gave me this idea a couple of years ago and I now swear by it. I know it isn't organic but I don't eat my deck plants and they need all the help they can get out there on the deck. I mix the Miracle Gro with compost and this combination is the bomb.