Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sounds Of The Night - Cicadas

Pic from this source.

I vaguely remember these things while growing up in Pennsylvania, but we always referred to them as locusts...didn't we? Seems they're confused often. However I don't remember them being so loud. So loud they drown out the creek noise. The below night video was taken about ten feet from the creek. If you compare to other creek videos you can get an idea how loud these critters are.

I've seen some laying on the ground in the morning but that's about it. Seems they live in wee little holes like this in the ground and love tree roots.

Btw, a few recipes for the critters if you like eating bugs...


video

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Another New Garden Ready

Finished this off yesterday before the rains. Hopefully the expert gardener (Mom) will have a chance to plan what to put where this fall providing she sees these pics. That would be up to my loveley neice Heather. Uncovered a tree stump that should give it some character, along with a rock drainage ditch that comes from the upper driveway. A few rocks too difficult to move are left to stay.

On to another challenge and still another garden area that gets quite a bit of shade. Thinking of spreading mulch around the level bottom area as there's oodles for free up the road. All sorts of leftover stuff to work with too. First pic rotates to the left to second pic giving an idea of the area.

And the area shown from the rear looking into the yard.




And YES it needs a drainage plan too...

Monday, July 27, 2009

Trim Azalea Bushes? Brown Thumb


Not sure about these critters either. See pics. Should I give 'em a haircut to let the flowers show? So much is happening under the foliage. I read through this article and still can't figure it out. What's the difference between pinching and pruning?

Exert: "Strong-growing new shoots should be pinched once or twice up to early August to encourage branching."

This whole pruning and cutting back thing is new to me. Do all plants accept it, or do some die? I keep hearing they will become bushier after awhile from cutting back.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Nice Mountain Weather!

The current weather is ideal but how long will it last? The entire month has been mild with no daytime temps over 85 degrees. The past few mornings around fifty and under. I'll take that over a muggy 78 at 8AM in South Florida this time of the year.

Not that I know much about Tomato plants, but this one is thriving, standing six feet high.

Petunias are getting out of control above the wall area. Time to thin them out. They don't want to fall over the wall, stopping at the edge?


A few more pics showing the progress of the gardens. Sprinkled some Miracle Grow on this one a few days ago. It looked like it needed it but check out these hanging baskets.



I forget the names of these thingies but mother calls it the "seed garden."

And I hear it all the time...don't plant grass in the summer time. Some areas have taken the new seed extremely well while others haven't. Being around all day to check moisture levels I now understand why some are doing well while others aren't. Some were left to dry out completely before the seeds germinated which takes about five days. Blame It on the afternoon nap. This area in in front of the garden in particular was almost void of grass four weeks ago. I think it came in great.

And another project that has been taking awhile to finish. Lot's of monster rocks and roots to move or remove. Once I get that done I can have a driveway again instead of a pile of stone.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Ph Control For A Healthy Lawn?


It sounds like a pretty darned good reason why I'm seeing what I am seeing. Once I find something that sounds like an answer; it isn't. I've been all over the internet and the Scott's site and could not find anything as compelling as this article on maintaining a proper Ph level. Makes sense why Scott's offers little if any mention on the subject. Guys/idiots like me would not be buying all this stuff they sell if I had a proper Ph level in the lawn?

We'll see after adding a lot of lime today, but apparently it takes quite awhile to work into the soil. Really didn't find any answer but depends on a number of factors. Let's see if anything improves over the next few months.

Apparently this fungus control may not work with the current Ph of the soil. Same with other stuff according to the article. Comments?

Average Current Lawn Ph-- 5.0 +

Thursday, July 16, 2009

A Picnic? Nope. Yard Soil Tests.

Kind of looks like a porch picnic doesn't it? I vfigured I'd do some soil testing to see what's going on with the lawn. Hey, it's doing fairly well but according to the tests taken room for improvement is out there. Area seeded in late April is doing quite well (below)

And other areas.... big grey spot back near walkway. I'm guessing brown patch. Actually the whole lawn (light patches here and there) is affected here and there. I just hope it doesn't spiral out of control, but it looks somewhat contained. Hoping Scott's Fungus Control does the trick. It says it's GUARANTEED! But only mentions controlling??




Four samples taken from the yard and all looks to be about the same except for very low PH in the large grey spot. The results aside of the Ph levels.

  • very low in nitrogen
  • mid range for phosphorous
  • very high in potassium


Now what to do? Stay tuned.

Follow the lawn progress from the beginning. Um, it's not shown from start to finish but backwards. It's just the way blogger works. Scroll to the bottom of the page for the first entries about 12 months ago.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Wildflowers Again

I'm trying to document these as they pop up from the ground. This wee little red one started about one week ago and it's all alone. The only one in the forest. Size of the flower is like that of a quarter, maybe smaller.

Here's one up the driveway that started about the same time or a week ago with two flowers. Seven days later it's grown to many. Grows on a vine. Once again all by it's lonesome...not a relative to be seen anywhere.

And this one showed today or yesterday, or at least I didn't notice it. I'll try and find some names later. The one below was growing near the above.