Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Garden Chores and Some Spring Firsts

I've been spending more time in the gardens lately, trying to make up for the neglect that accumulated while I recovered from my knee surgery and even managed to start the attack on the jungle that's sprung up in the backyard, until an urgent call for help came.  Seems one of my granddaughters had an appointment with the dentist today and both her parents were waylaid with a stomach ailment making the rounds in these parts, so I had to alter my plans and get cleaned up to take her to her appointment.  Afterwards, I used the trip home to check out a Home Depot and a Lowes that are a little further from home, looking for another basketball plant.  No success on that front, but I did by a new pair of grass clippers, as my old pair died this morning, literally falling apart as I trimmed in those tight spots where I don't dare risk using the electric line trimmer for fear of damaging delicate plants.  Despite cutting things short today, I still have managed to get some things done around here in the past few days, such as taking down the birdhouse I made last year and adding perches outside each entry hole in hopes it will make the birdhouse more attractive to potential residents.

Another major project was necessitated by the spur pruning method I used on the grapes. Since spur pruning produces more new canes than cane pruning does, the single wire I had to train the vines on wasn't going to suffice this year, so I added cross braces to each pole, with four holes drilled in each cross brace, through which I ran sturdy twine.  The canes now have more room, so the grape clusters shouldn't be crowded and the whole thing looks much tidier.

Notice the cluster in the middle-left of the picture; it's almost ready to bloom.

Yesterday I had to go to Home Depot to get more twine for the grapes and parts to extend the drip system to the new rose planters in the side yard, so I took the opportunity to look for another basketball plant.  I didn't find one, but I did find this Tiger Jaws, Faucaria tigrina, that I simply couldn't resist and it's now nestled safely in the wheelbarrow succulent garden.

I think they should change the name to "Shark Jaws".

Finally, here are some pictures that provide further evidence that spring has indeed come to Dove Manor.

The first Ein Shemer apples.

The first potato peeking out of the ground.

The first Blue Moon rose of Spring.

The first Climbing America rose of Spring

Black Oil sunflowers sown by the birds; these are right below the platform feeder.


  1. Love the "jaws" plant, do you think I could find it in Iowa ???

  2. Both HD and Lowes get an assortment of succulents, so if your local stores carry succulents, assuming there's one nearby, then try them first. Otherwise maybe you can search the local nurseries or the Internet.

  3. I have spring is late here this year..

  4. Our forecast is for 90 the next two days.