Friday, November 27, 2009

Wildflowers Expected To Shoot Up

By obtaining the names on the packages here's a photo list of what is being planted...scattered. Top going left to right.

Butterflyweed- also known as chigger weed. I already have this growing.
Prairie Aster
Farewell To Spring
Mountain Garland
Lance Coreopsis
Plains Coreopsis
Purple Cone flower
California Poppy
Blanket flower
Indian Blanket
Globe Gillia
Birds Eye(a)
Blue Flax(p)
Perennial Lupine(p)
Arroyo Lupine(a)
Missouri primrose
White evening primrose
California Bluebell(a)
California Bluebell(a)
Annual Phlox(a)
Black-eyed Susan(a)
Scarlet Sage(a&p)
Bachelor Button
Spurred Snapdragon

...and three or four that didn't make the photo gallery.

Corn Poppy
Gloriosa Daisy
Nodding Catchfly

A few months ago I bought (8) 2 gram packets of these. Offered by Ferry-Morse called Natures Rainbow Mixture and American Native Mixture, or enough to cover about 200 square feet. The area is now running at about 300 so I needed more. Now Lowes has easy shaker wildflower seed and more selections are added to what's above. And much lower in cost.

Bring on Cool Color Mix by Burpee...

Chinese Forget Me Not
Bachelor Button
Annual Baby's Breath
Virginia Stock- not sure about this one
Clarkia elegans

...and another bag to cover 1,000 square feet. Damned place! Now what am I going to do? Get some seed up on that other bank (opposite) that get's a lot of sun as well? This one is called Flagrant Wildflower Mix. Guaranteed To Grow!

The list...

White Yarrow
Sweet Sultan
Siberian Wallflower
Chinese forget me not
Sweet William- have already
Birds Eye Gilia
Candy tuff Amara
Sweet Pea lathyrus
Sweet alyssum
Evening Scented Stock
Four o'clock
Lemon Mint
Nicotina Alata- smells like cigs?
Evening Primrose

Good thing I don't have more full sun areas around here. This place would keep me busy!! Too busy.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wildflower Gardens

Or at least that's what this area will be eventually. Wildflower area is planned to run around the corner, or about the fifth fence post. After starting yesterday, I thought the area in front of the fence would be an ideal place for the rest of the flower bulbs. Finally! I actually got tired of looking at them. Lost count of how many. Count 'em for yourself. The final tally below doesn't include the ones near the pressure treated wall.

And I said I got bored with the west side of the house, but dangit those bulbs laying around were annoying me. So there's something like 100 in that area. More crocus had to be planted as well, along the fence by the lawn. Should be an interesting spring...wondering how many will come up. Oh, the paperwaites are beginning to sprout (warm weather)

And the Dianthus is dropping seeds.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Muskogee Crepe Myrtle

I've been thinking for awhile about what to do up the driveway, Something that will stand out and grow fast. At first I had considered Hollyhocks then came across the Crepe Myrtle. Wow! Stunning I think, and the darned things grow 4-5 feet each year reaching 15-25 feet. What's more is they bloom for about four months. Definitely lot's of color in your face making the turn in the bend of the driveway.



Expensive? Yes, larger ones, but I'm trying to get my hands on some 3 gal sizes, maybe in the $20 each range. I figure ten along the fence line. Seems there are some growers about an hour south of Atlanta that I may look into.

More information about the tree here.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Finally. Steps Off The Driveway

Forget that other idea of creating rail road tie steps. That project would have taken forever amongst a weave of roots and who knows what else. Not to mention the slope being extreme. With the chainsaw being out today and the blade/chain getting duller and duller I thought about putting it to rest by cutting some railroad ties. That usually puts them into the can't use again department. I'm not good at sharpening them anyway.

So, another project complete. It didn't take as long as I had thought either. I did think I would encounter some large rocks but it wasn't so bad. A few finishing touches needed but finally...steps up to the old logging road! Good place for the 30 or so daffodil bulbs left.

A view from above...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Raised Flower Beds

That's what they call 'em eh?

I mentioned I was bored with the west side of the cabin, but realized if I'm gonna have all these 'lil plants come mid to late April they gotta go somewhere. I suspect by the reading I've been doing I can have six to eight inch tall plants that can go in the ground about then...maybe later.

Last frost date is the key. What the heck, plant some about April 15 hope there's no frost after. If it doesn't work bring in the extra backup plants that are still protected. I should have oodles.

Ellijay dates since 1997- year/date/temp

2009 /Apr 22 /30.9
2008 /Apr 30 /31.6
2007 / Apr 13 /31.6
2006 /Mar 27 /22.9
2005 /Apr 25 /27.7
2004 /May 4 /30.2
2003 /Apr 1 / 28.3
2002 /Apr 6 /28.8
2001 /Apr 19/ 24.9
2000 /Apr 27 / 30.8
1999 /Apr 19 /27.4
1998 /Apr 12 /29.7
1997 /May 11 /31.1

So I spent a few hours preparing. I expect to see the horse poop supplier guy this weekend...

Checking the sun shade situation it looks like half gets full sun from 10AM until about 3 PM in summer. Here's a pic from August 1 this year at 11 AM. 3 PM pictures are very similar except stump area gets full sun. At 4 PM "dappled" shade. 5 PM no direct sun.

The plan...

Lottsa horse dooey to spread around the next few days including the east side of the house up on the hill bank.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Ida Rainfall North Georgia

With as loose as the soil has been, today could be a good day hunting for fallen trees and firewood. Power did go out around 3 AM as two battery backups woke me with their annoying beeping sounds. No power...grrr. If it's local I thought I wouldn't have it back on until later in the day as I'm sure other trees in the area toppled over. Nope. Power restored within two hours.

Big gully washers up near the Smokies in South Eastern Tennessee, as shown in the precipitation map above. I'm located within the white circle right side of the image(click for larger view). I never noticed this Wunderground rainfall total function until recent, but it's pretty darned accurate. My baking pan rain gauge shows 4.25 inches since yesterday morning. Naturally I have to dump it from time to time and make some guesstimate recalculations because it's not square from top to bottom.

Here are the local the Wunderground totals in the Ellijay area...

Yes, the creek is running strong. It's been healthy all summer compared to last years drought. Daffodils bulbs are planted about 18 inches above the water line. They're safe.

Upon closer inspection it appears I'll have to tame this water retention area. Hope the Daffodil bulbs don't rot(orange flags). Rainfall totals were more than mentioned previous. Probably over five inches.

And a pic of my neighbors home that burnt down about ten days ago. Everyone is fine.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Choices For The New Garden Area

Or should I say really rough draft. Click the image to enlarge.

Must be able to tolerate shade.

To Do:

More research on what works where. Or will they grow up here in mountain country? Dave's Garden and the gardenweb are very good sources for folks that usually wonder why this plant died or turned brown etc. One I've been looking into are Astilbes as they like moist, wet soil with shade. That would probably work well where the driveway rainwater runoff now lays. Most of it falls off the hill (picture below) and sits in a gully. It remains moist during dry times as well.

Still unsure how that was created. Maybe years ago when that large dam up the creek failed. Who knows how much water rushed through here then. I would venture a guess this cabin would have been under water if it was here.

Judging by pictures over the years, the sun shade mix looks something like this between May and July. After that the shade increases.

Updated pressure treated garden layout. It looks kind of stupid in the illustration, but the way I look at it, it will be colorful. Wondering if the Tulips will be around when the others make an appearance?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

More Garden Ideas

I got tired of the garden on the west side of the cabin. It's not visible anyway. After loosening up more soil along the fence going up the driveway, I realized I had been building a nice rock wall next to the two tiered pressure treated (PT) garden without knowing it. More rocks and wallah. Unfortunately to be seen you have to stand in the woods.

Let's clear that out too.

Slope some of the soil around the PT and maybe, just maybe, I'll have some spring flowers growing with small in front and larger in back. I only wish I had some in the 10-12 inch range. More on that at a later date with winter sowing ideas.

Nicely amended soil...hmmmn. I almost made it to Lowes this past week without spending money. Almost...

Wall areas from the woods...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Save The Tulip Bulbs From Critters

I keep hearing folks all over message boards crying about losing tulip bulbs from critters that dig, burrow, or steal. Maybe they're in the suburbs where animals are less concerned with people walking about. Around here I still see little wildlife. Cranking up the chainsaw every now and then along with the lawnmower may keep them deeper into the woods? I did however see a few doe on the hill across the creek the other day.

To the tulips. I finally cut the rain barrel in half after I thought placing them next to the steps would look good. I think I can stuff about twenty in each one and cover it with chicken wire in case the critters get near the house looking for a snack.

I hear mice like them too...hmmm. I've also heard about mothballs as being a deterrent along with cayenne pepper, but the mothballs...I wondered how that would affect the soil. In conclusion, chicken wire until the spring sounds best. Here's a smaller barrel with mesh on top.

Tulip bulbs planted? 45 in the wall garden along with 100 or so Crocus and 45 of those blue things that grow about 6-8 inches...Muscari.

EDIT: November 10- No critters yet!