Fancy Pots

Part Two of Little Projects to Welcome Noel Home went in today. The front planters were looking really ragged and dead, so new flowers for the fall. I figured some mums and a few other things would look nice and quaint.

As I was driving down the street to the nursery, the weather report said there were reports of rain around the Bay Area, and there was a "chance of rain." It was cloudy and there was that wetness in the air that comes in before the rain, so I thought it might rain in the afternoon just to help me water in the plants.

It started raining as I walked out of the nursery with the plants. Oh, well.

Front planters before

There we have the before picture. The rain had eased up a tiny bit so I figured I'd go quick and get it done. I worked in a greenhouse in college and while I have not retained the physical conditioning I had then, I can still pot up plants in no time flat.

It took me ten minutes to cut down the dead plants in the planters, top them up with fresh potting soil, plant the new plants, and tidy up the trash. And spend half a minute trying to figure out some smart way to clean off my hands so I could take the picture before giving up and wiping them on my shirt.

I didn't do anything about the planter of irises. It always looks like hell at this time of year because it's a zero-water container, but they come back every year as long as I don't look at them too funny. When I stopped watering them I thought they would die, but they actually got healthier because the lack of water made snails stay away.

New plants in the planters

Lots of people don't like mums, but I find them charming. A lot of the plants that are considered cliches are just cliches because they are used a lot, and they're used a lot because they look good and hold up under pressure. I mixed mums, fancy pansies, and snapdragons in pink and yellow.

Right side planter

Left side planters

The short planter looks kind of funky because I got to the end of the bag of potting soil and just kind of dumped it over the plants. Usually I'd immediately wash it off while watering in the plants, but it's raining, so I'll leave it until it stops raining and reduce my work. Until then, muddy plants. I put a few perennials in that planter, too, thinking that maybe this winter I will get around to removing the rose irrigation and installing drippers in these pots. I'm such a perfectionist that I've been killing myself trying to find some unobtrusive fittings for the drip system to use for pots, and in the meantime killing plants willy nilly.

Hidden snapdragon

We usually enter the house from the driveway, so I put this dark pink snapdragon back there, so the arrangement looks nice from both sides.

It's still raining, so my plans to cut back that dead Bermuda grass (waddaya know, Roundup every four weeks has been working) and tidy up the front a bit are on hold. I think I'll vacuum the front door.

posted by ayse on 10/17/10