Q1 2012 Yard & Garden Round-Up

Forsythia in the foreground and azaleas in the back!

At work we just had a quarterly company review, which is always fun. We get together with beer and wine and look at everything we’ve accomplished in the past quarter. There’s all sorts of fun charts and amazing stats, with embarrassing pictures of people hidden throughout. It’s good times. But most importantly, it serves as reminder of exactly how far we’ve come in the past three months. You get reminded of old challenges that have faded from memory in the light of newer ones, which is pretty good fodder for a larger sense of achievement.

Anyway, this inspired me to do my own version of a Q1 review for the garden, since writing about every little thing is tedious for me and probably boring for anyone who decides to read it. So instead I’ll just do a wrap-up of what we’ve been up to. I’ve started with some obligatory spring flower pics that you may have seen if you follow me on Twitter.

A closer shot of the azaleas.

I already blogged in a fair amount of detail of the intense period of action that I dubbed Yard Explosion here, here, and here. That gave rise to an ongoing project to make the space between our house and our neighbors’ house the way we, collectively, want it to be. We ripped out the last of the shrubbery, put in four raised garden beds, and a new future hedge of Kanjiro camellias.

Here are the beds! I still need to put chips on my two.
Here’s an unintentionally “artsy” shot of our hedge of 17 Kanjiro camellias.
This is what the Kanjiros will look like when they bloom. Source: Gene Phillips

Along with our raised garden beds, we also have tomatoes going in containers – we did this last year and it worked fairly well.

Tomatoes, marigolds, and wood chips.

The wood chips came from our own trees – when we had them trimmed in January. Unfortunately, they’ve been sitting in the driveway ever since! But we finally got them shoveled up and hauled off to various places around the garden. Now we have somewhere to park again. And a prettier yard. Things look so much better with a layer of mulch!

In other food-crop related news, we have tons of blackberries and raspberries setting! Another thing I hope to accomplish this year to to plant blueberries. They are so expensive, so it would be great to have some of our own.

Even our serviceberry wedding tree is setting its berries! Hooray!

Independently of the inter-house vegetable gardening/landscaping project and the mulching chore, we received a huge amount of plants from our dear friends Susan and Richard. On a cold February day, we dug and transplanted a ton of plants – yellowroot, hearts a-bustin’, itea, clethra, trillium, cardinal flower, celandine poppy, fern-leaf phacelia, sea oats, and ferns. Out of all these plants, we lost two – a celandine poppy and the itea. We got more than one celandine, but only one itea – that slipped through the cracks in our busy March – so sad! I keep hoping it will revive.

Fern-leaf Phacelia
The celandine poppies in various stages of doing their thing.

My latest acquisition is a flowering maple. I have been wanting one of these guys for a while. They come in a variety of gorgeous, warm colors. I am interested to see how this one does – they are sold as annuals, but my neighbor overwinters his out in the yard and it seems to do fine.

The flowers droop very gracefully, but I wanted to show off its psuedo-hibiscus look.

That’s pretty much it for our almost-only-Q1 update. At the moment, everything is just growing as hard as it can, and it’s green, green, green.


Nerd. Foodie. Gamer. Homecook. Perpetual planner. Gardener. Aspiring homesteader. Direct response graphic designer. I use too many damn commas.