November 3, 2018

Busy Planting

Just like the way you can have 15 books on hold at the library, then 10 come in all at once, all my planting chores have piled up this week! 

My big bulb order came in on Tuesday:
100 double narcissus (mixed varieties)
75 hyacinths (25 each of 3 kinds: 'Fondant,' 'Gyspy Queen,' and 'Pink Pearl')
100 Fritillaria meleagris (the checkered lily! can't wait for this one!)
50 anemone giant:  'Monarch de caen' mix

Plus, 10 Norway spruce and 2 lilac bushes from the Arbor Day Foundation.

I knew this was coming, so I was able to get a head start on weeding out the place for all those daffodils, at least! I put them along the left side of the garden.
I have peonies planted about 1 foot away from the fence and 3 feet apart in that area.
So I planted the daffodils in clumps of 10 (or so) in front of and between the peonies.
As I was digging the holes for them, I found a discouraging number of bindweed roots, but I got out as many as I could. I'm hoping the daffodils will help keep the weeds down along Peony Row.

In that same area, I FINALLY got the peonies planted that I got from my mom in August.
I don't know if they are even going to make it. 
There's still space for 2-3 more peonies on the end of the row closest to the lawn.
Probably room for 10 more on the far end--after I get it all weeded out and move the big logs next to the fence. My peony plan is to add some every year. They're expensive! 
They take 3 years to really start producing flowers for cutting, which feels like a long time to wait!

Today was a slightly warmer day (upper 40's), so I was able to get out there and do a little more planting. Not as much as I had hoped, frankly, because we couldn't get the little tiller going.
You see, my plan is to put the hyacinths along the back side of the greenhouse.
There was a small hill of dirt there from when my husband dug out the foundation for the greenhouse.
So I was able to remove that extra dirt and added a small amount of compost on top.
Then, while he was looking at the tiller and trying to fix it, I decided I had better keep going on the next things.

So I moved on to the 10 Norway spruce.
I put in 5 along the west-side fence, between the gravel and the back of the shed.
Assuming we can keep them alive (might be a big assumption), they should form a nice windbreak....eventually. They took a long time to plant, however, because I was digging out the weedy turf to make the holes. Then I brought in backfill from elsewhere in the yard (including the hyacinth hill), in hopes of not returning quite as many weed roots to the soil.
The other 5 I planted just 3-4 feet apart at the far end of the orchard. We don't really know where we want them to go permanently, but this will be a fine spot for them to grow for a year or two until we figure it out.

We have such a deer problem here that the next step was to put up some protection.We used our tomato cages, which didn't work at all for the tomatoes anyway this year, and flipped them upside down, securing them to the ground with extra long landscape staples.
Then we covered each cage with 1" hardware wire. Except that I estimated instead of measuring, so we were short on the hardware wire. By the time we got as many done as I had wire for, it was dark.
That was only 4 out of the 10. Yes. I was way off. 
So, assuming the other 6 last the weekend, I guess I will be going back to the store on Monday to get some more hardware wire. 

Never did get back to my hyacinth bulbs.
Oh well. I guess I'll have my work cut out for me on Monday, won't I?

After that it's just the checkered lilies, which are small and should go fast, and the 2 lilac bushes (which came as 2 tiny sticks--I have my doubts that they will actually grow.)

Last year we had our first big snowfall Nov. 16, so I can feel that clock ticking away.

Once I get these planted and get the garden tilled, I'll heave a sigh of relief and move on to other things!