Friday, June 21, 2013

Garden Update: Basil is IN!

I planted basil seeds in 4 packs over a month ago and just hadn't found a spot to plant them for good. Today was the day, cool morning, no rain for two whole days, and the ground was ready to be worked. I pulled out the Mountain Bluet (Centaurea montana) which disappointed me by sprawling all over and messing up my neatest garden ever,  and dumped it in the compost pile. Sometimes you have to admit defeat. Then I took the adjacent flower pot and paver out and put them aside and suddenly I had a nice big basil bed. I've had basil here before and it does really well, with lots of morning sun and after 3 shade. Plus it's close to the kitchen.

I had planned to put this new Fire and Ice hosta in a pot with the new Fragrant Bouquet hosta and dark lush heuchera, but I decided to lift a June hosta from obscurity under the Bleeding Hearts and add that to the pot. So the little Fire and Ice went directly into the peony-hood. I'll keep an eye on it there and move it later if necessary. It needs more light than most, but I don't want it to burn.

The other day I noticed that my young Son of Sum and Substance hosta (in the hosta section of Dave's Memorial Swamp) had been almost decimated, leaves pulled into the ground and other sprawled out away from the plant. Critters! I got Dave to dig the remaining plant out of the wet mucky mud and wash off the offending gluey dirt and then today I found a new safer home for it. It now lives between the new Krossa Regals, right behind and in the shade of the coral bark Japanese maple. Sigh. I love to rescue a plant. It will be huge in a few years, as will the Krossas.

I took a break and decided I could pay some attention to the back yard by the red knockout rose. I scraped away cleome, larkspur and phlox and tried to dig out a red bud volunteer. The roots had gone to China, and wouldn't budge. I will have Dave give it a try later, when he feels better. I'm taking out those sedum and putting them next to the lantana in the flower box on the pond side of the house, replacing the lanky larkspur I pulled out the other day. It is always dry and shaded there, and I think the sedum will thrive in that sandy soil. So when the sedum is gone, and the other offending upstarts in that bed, I will have a big space, half sun and half total shade to fill. Sale plants in my future?

Now I can see the Twist and Shout hydrangea. Funny thing. When we planted it there, the dawgs stepped on a branch and almost pulled it out of the main trunk. It lay on the wet earth and after a month of rain, developed roots. I saw them today and buried the rooted section. Woowoo! Another hydrangea for free! The big purple one is starting to darken. So yummy.

Back in the front, I realized I had just the right spot to start my new gift sedums. I know they will be spreading but I felt I had to get them in the ground today, or else. This spot is hot and sunny and I think they will respond to the porous soil there. The nasturtiums are suddenly blooming and with the purple petunias and the green everything else, it makes a lovely arrangement.

First of the fancy daylilies is open. Shiny petals!


  1. Anonymous6:00 PM

    Hi! I am an avid gardener, and Master Gardener,and wanted to let you know I have had 'Fire and Ice' for several years.You will just love it, I'm sure. It is one of my favs.

    I'm going back to reread your post...your gardens look wonderful. So happy you got a free hydrangea!



  2. Love all these different perspectives and ideas. Will definitely use some of these tips. My kiddos are past the toddler stage now thankfully and we no longer need to baby proof everything and can have nicer things.
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