Sunday, June 14, 2009

Front Bed Rehab-Before and After

At last, sun and warmth! The morning started with a bath for the dog and a meal for the plants. We have had so much rain that I've been worried about my trace nutrients washing away. Today everything got a dousing with Neptunes Harvest, Organic Fish and Seaweed fertilizer. It's a gentle 2-3-1 natural fertilizer that smells horrible! It reeked bad enough to convinve me it was time to attack the front bed and leave the back beds to air out!

The bed in front of the garage is designed to be low maintenace with four seasons interest.
I've been spending so much time out back that low maintenance became no maintenance and the curb appeal has started to suffer. The issues:
1. Dogwood needs pruning.
2. Deal with winterkill on boxwood.
3. Pauls Glory eating the Rhododenrum.
4. Barberry needs some shaping.
5. Mulch looks uck.

6. Lots and lots of weeds.
7. Juniper needs trimming.
8. Water feature, needs redesign (its the pile of pebbles.
9. Lots and lots of bindweed needs to be removed from the juniper.
10. Tulip remains need to come out.
11. Silver mound artemesia needs relocation.
12. Need some color.

It took me from 11am-5pm to get it done. The biggest hang-up was the water feature. It was basically a water pump in a buried bucket covered with a grate and pebbles and waterproof membrane.

The design flaw was that the bucket was too low, so with every rainstorm, soil, mulch and leaves washed into the reservoir, fouling the water. I had to dig the whole thing out and start over. I moved it forward and then left the bucket roughly six inches above grade. Then I added a colorful pot to help keep the toads and squeeters out. Stone hides the bucket. It works much better now but still needs a bit of tweeking. I don't like the way the inside of the pot looks. I need to either fill it with some stones or paint it. There is also a bit of silocone work that needs to be done with the pump. It's cracked. For now though, this is a big improvement!
On examination, I found that the hedge was not completely dead in the center. There are a ton of green branches low and in the interior of it. I cleaned it up with some trimming and hacked out a bunch of dead so the light can get in. It will get some Neptunes Harvest this evening as well. I also lopped up the bottom limbs of the dogwood to get it more light. Hopefully, it will recover soon.

There was a lot of green debris that came out of this bed. Every plant needed some big trims and the amount of weeds was not small. I always hate trimming the barberry, it chops off the bright red that works so well in this bed. The new foliage will change over soon, but for now, still lots of green in the bed.

Things are in good shape now, but there is a bit more to do. There are two little landscape roses in front of the dogwood that need to come out. They have not performed well enough to get to stay. I'm yanking them out. Also, I planted a persian sheild for a bit of low maintenance color in front of the rhodies today but will probably add some additional color in front of the hedge. I don't like annuals in this bed. I like it kept neat and low maintenance. Wnen I stand back and look at it though, my eye is going to the dead parts of the hedge. I may need something bright to keep them focused elsewhere! I'll wait until the barberry reds up and reassess.

I'm glad to have this out of the way for the most part. Next task, the bed in front of the front door. You thought this one was in bad shape to start. Ugh. that will be a project!

1 comment:

AnnF said...

That's a lot done for one day. :)