Garden Report: September 24

This is pretty much the worst time of year to dig in our soil. The sand dries out over the summer and turns into something resembling concrete, but then when you dig it (hacking away with shovels and picks) it turns into soft, flowing sand and collapses into the hole.

Front walkway with bricks

So getting the rest of the front walkway bricks in place today took a bit longer than I expected. I was also digging out some thoroughly entrenched Bermuda grass, and I trimmed back the Aesclepias speciosa patch for the winter to make the front a little tidier.

(Normally I am opposed to pruning perennials back for the winter, but for the front a more decorative approach is called for.)

I planted a few more plants, these ones having arrived from High Country Gardens on Friday. I got a small group of ground covers: Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, Paronychia kapela ssp. serpyllifolia, and Veronica oltensis.

Tree spot

I planted the Paronychia kapela ssp. serpyllifolia under the street tree, to shore up the somewhat weak-looking Lantana already there.

Tomorrow is the Berkeley Botanical Garden fall plant sale, and I'll be picking up some more plants for the front and the swatch of space between our house and the neighbors'. I'm sure I will also buy some plants that I don't have room for anywhere, because that's how I behave at plant sales.

Raccoon tracks on the steps

Speaking of the front of the house, it looks like our freshly painted steps have impressed one of our neighbors. I do wish the raccoons would wipe their feet before walking up the steps.

posted by ayse on 09/24/11