Friday, June 19, 2009

progress update: a little bit of everything

Hello, green blog. It appears I have been neglecting you something awful lately. It's not because nothing is happening in the garden -- it's because there's too much and when it's a choice between weeding or writing, I'll be weeding every time.

Today I'm trying to figure out how best to deal with the basket-of-gold (Alyssum saxatile) in the front garden. It's nearly done blooming and I know from experience that it looks like hell if I don't clean it up, but I don't want to damage the plant because it really does wonderfully. I don't know that I have any pictures of it blooming -- I'll have to get some next year -- but it's been absolutely spectacular every year, no matter the weather. Everything I've seen suggests pruning back hard after flowering -- cutting back 3 inches of growth -- so I think I'll try that this year and see how it goes. I do worry that though they seem to like the neglect, they might get sick of it after three years and up and die on me at any time now.

My other major garden task for today is compost maintenance. I tried to do it last week and it poured all day Thursday, so today looks good. The vermicomposter is going to be emptied entirely, and about 2/3 of the worms placed in new homes in the various compost piles. The rest will get new bedding in the vermicomposter, and "fresh" food from the veggie crisper in the fridge (yum!) and then hopefully they'll be good for another year. The castings I'm going to use in some of the house plants, but most of it will go into the composter to enrich the compost there. Castings dry out into extremely hard pellets, so they don't make great mulch. I don't think.

The other composters need to be turned, and I'm hoping that some of the leaf mulch from the new yard waste bin is going to be ready for mulching the garlic bed, which will be another plan for today if it is ready. Um, and re-potting tomatoes into their big containers. If I can find the soil. And transplanting the asters. And the pepper.

And since I've been saying I'll post photos of the square foot bed (which is really working very well so far):

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