Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wet, Wet, Wet

We've had intermittent rain (and sometimes downpours) since Saturday, which means my garden is nice and watered, but now it's too watered, and I don't dare sow any seeds anywhere, lest they rot. But that hasn't stopped me from moving some things around: I dug some daylilies out of one area of my garden and put them in the verge (the place between the sidewalk and the road), so that daylilies now run the entire verge. Where those daylilies were (and some were just little off-shoots of my larger plants), I planted a few more peonies, two 'Benjamin Franklins' that I bought from Skillin's, and two mystery peonies that a neighbor gave me last fall (which I had planted in the back yard).

I also planted my potatoes (Red Pontiac and Yukon Gold), which needed to go in, so I had to balance not being too late with not having them rot in the ground. Let's hope I chose well. Also defying the weather, I planted some gladiolas alongside my fence.

In an annual ritual, it's pulling-out-the-blasted-oak-seedlings time. I walk around my garden, weeding tool in hand, looking for those distinctive red leaves, and out they come. With three oak trees in my neighbor's front yard, adjoining mine, we are inundated with acorns -- and their nefarious consumers, the squirrels.

Finally, my big purchase: I bought an espaliered apple tree, with three varieties grafted onto the same root stock. Unfortunately, Skillins' supplier lost track of what the three varieties were, so it'll be a surprise in the fall. Here's the challenge: I have to cut down four immature oak trees (each about two inches in diameter), which are all right next to each other and in the exact spot in the back yard where I want to put the apple tree. I'd been wanting for years to cut out those trees, but they had become a "house" for my daughter Sage's imaginary persona, Hack (who is, in her mind, a gardener and also an employee at Skillin's). While Hack still shows up once in a while, Sage now likes the idea of harvesting her own apples, so she's willing to give up the trees.


  1. Enjoyed your posts; we are now trying to vegetable/herb garden here in southeast Tennessee. We're transplants from the coast of Maine where we had much success with growing vegetables, herbs, flowers, etc. I miss the Old Country. We also spent a lot of time at Skillin's out on the Old Bath road. Looks like a wet spring for you folks? The terrible heat down here is our biggest challenge. Some kindly folks at Johnny's Seeds have been offering advice for our modest efforts this year. Happy gardening, best of luck in all of your agricultural pursuits!

  2. It sounds like you are still getting a lot of gardening accomplished in spite of the rain. I hope the small oak trees are not too difficult. It will be interesting to see what varieties of apples your tree will produce.