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Tired again, and that is what I am.  Bright and early this morning, Jim left to ride to Charlottesville avoiding the Interstates to meet our youngest son and his family who drove there from Virginia Beach.  The ride took him more than 3 hours, but he got to have lunch and a visit with them prior to starting his ride back on a different route, still avoiding the Interstates.  I drove his monster SUV into town and had breakfast with him then we went our separate ways for the day.  My first stop of the day was to Lowes to stock up on a few plants and a lot of bags of mulch, though not nearly enough.  Three years ago, once the final grading was completed at our house, we set about to landscape.  One of our shrub purchases was one that we later found out, should not even be sold in this planting zone and it did not survive the first winter.  The others were Pygmy Barberry and Dwarf Nandina and they did fine the first winter.  To do this landscaping, I first had to move all of the grape iris that I had been given in a trade and the English Daisies that I bought from a local friend and had planted on the front of the house.  They had multiplied and were divided into beds on the east side of the garage and in the bed created by the east side of the house and west side of the garage, bounded on the south by the breezeway.  That bed has been planted with shade loving perennials  toward the breezeway and daylilies, iris, and daisies toward the front where they get more light.  When we did the landscaping, we put down weed mat and heavily mulched that area, but the ground cherries, plantain, dandelions, wild geranium and chickweed thrive in there.

This past winter after a cool wet summer last year, nearly did the Nandinas in.  I was ready to dig them all up when I noticed that though they really look scraggly, they are putting out new growth.  The dead shrubs were well spaced to add 3 new Pygmy Barberry shrubs.  When I got home with the car full of goodies, the short handled digging tool was brought out and I sat down and inched my way across the full front of the house, weeding and digging out all of the misplaced wildflowers, planting the three new shrubs, and mulching the entire bed.


With potted flowers at each end of the two beds, a fresh hanging plant on the shepherds crook, the spider plants hanging from the porch, the front looks presentable again.  Though some weeding was done in the breezeway bed, it was sprayed with a vinegar/Epsom Salt/Dawn detergent mixture to hopefully kill back the tender weeds then more mulch will be added to that bed as well.

The tomatoes and some of the peppers finally made it into the garden today.  While I was at Lowe’s, I picked up a few heirloom peppers that already had some size on them to get things going.  Some of the exotic heirlooms that are starts will be added as soon as they are more than an inch tall.  A row of heirloom Tomatillos was also planted and the entire veggie garden was soaked down with the sprinkler since we aren’t getting rain for a few more days.


After a late lunch, the same treatment was given to the east side of the garage bed, and a shrub was divided and planted on the front corner of the garage.  I hope it survives the move.  Tomorrow, more mulch will be purchased and that bed will be given a new layer as well.  It appears that the Iris need to be divided again.  I don’t like to throw them away, but everyone up here has beds and beds of them in their  yards.


My final task for the day was to put the American Flag on the banner pole between the garage doors.  It seems only fitting since it is Memorial Day.  After a dinner prep of a slow cooking pot roast with vegetables, a long hot shower and scrub, I’m sitting on the porch with a glass of iced tea, resting and waiting for the wayward traveler to get home and see my efforts from the past two days.  I love it when my labors show and everything is neat and tidy.