Wednesday, May 28, 2003
Planted fuschia, geraniums, torenia and caladium in a pot that I have in a really neat pot holder that goes on the wrought iron balusters on the south side of my front porch steps. Unfortunately I just have one of these since I have found it only at one store & I bought the only one they had. Right now that pot is at the top of the stairs where previously no pots could go since the wrought iron balustrade is at an angle and all other pot holders for wrought iron railings presume the top rail is parallel with the ground. This holder attaches to a single baluster so the angle of the railing is a non-issue. I hope to find more of these someplace, but it's possible it may be a discontinued item.
I also put the varigated red geraniums on the front porch steps into pots with some white sweet alyssum -- this way the pot will look less bare than if I just had the geraniums in the pots by themselves.
Thursday, May 22, 2003
Planted torenia (aka wishbone flower), pink polka dot plants and sweet alyssum in some planters. The torenia & alyssum are in shades of purple to color-coordinate with the design on the planter pots & the pink polka dot plants provide a bit of harmonious color contrast. Experience has shown me that they tend to get leggy as they grow, so they'll also provide a bit of vertical interest while the torenia will act as a flowering middle layer and the alyssum will provide a foundation of bloom to cover up any leggy stems.
Saturday, May 17, 2003
Didn't do too much today as it was both damp AND cold -- the weather this spring has been bad -- very cold, somewhat damp (which is good for the plants, as long as their roots don't rot) and much more like October/November than mid-May.
I filled some planters with earth on the front terrace -- I'll plant seeds there in the next few days. Also put out some fuschias in some pretty ceramic pots I'd bought as a set & placed on my corner shelves on either side of the chimney. I've also bought a set of ceramic half-pots I'll be putting up on the chimney wall where I'll be planting some of the afore-mentioned fuschias but I didn't do much more than bring everything out onto the front terrace -- I'll probably be putting the fuschias in the half-pots tomorrow, which is also when I'm most likely to be attaching the half-pots to the chimney. I'll be attaching them in an inverted triangle around my Green Man plaque -- I'd done that before with fuschias in plastic half-pots & it had looked very nice. Unfortunately, those pots disintegrated after a few years, which is why I'm now replacing them with ceramic ones. The ceramic ones also happen to be prettier too . . .
Some of my neighbors told me they like the solar lights I put up on the terrace -- they think they look very pretty. Hearing that sure put a big smile on my face!!
Thursday, May 15, 2003
Put up more solar lights on the front terrace at either end of each pot of lotuses I've made. I've arranged the lotus planter pots so that there is a smaller, regular-type planter between the larger, heavier pots of lotuses. This is so that after plants are growing in the smaller planters, the weight of the soil plus water in the lotus pots (which are jammed right up against the smaller planters) will hopefully anchor them if it's windy & prevent the smaller planters from falling off the terrace wall. I know from experience the lotus pots won't budge but I've had tip-over problems in the past with the other planters and I don't want them to fall overboard, since that would be rather dangerous. They'd just fall into the front (east) garden, not the street or my neighbor's property, but I or the kitties might get hit if we happened to be below at the wrong time and some of my plants would definitely get damaged by any planters that fell, so I'd rather try to prevent a problem if possible. I also plan on tying those planters to some cinderblocks I'll bring onto the terrace as an extra precaution.
The arrangement of the planter pots also serves to evenly space the solar lights I've put up. I still have a few more I plan to put up but I have to create a lotus pot to put them in & I haven't gotten around to going to the Korean supermarket yet. When I'm done, everything wil be evenly & symmetrically spaced on the front (east) wall of the front terrace.
I also put up a few more patriotic decoration for Memorial Day. The front door now has two large flag-patterned bows and I stuck a red-white-and-blue spray of mylar strips, stars & miniature flags into the middle of the planter of fuschia & pansies that's on top of the post at the bottom of my mini-front porch steps .
I'll probably leave all the patriotic decorations up until at least around Halloween, since they'll be good for the 4th of July and Veterans' Day as well as September 11th. Some people want to create a new holiday for that -- I've heard it being referred to already as "Patriot's Day" -- I certainly think it should be a recognized holiday/day of remembrance/call-it-what-you-will . . .
Wednesday, May 14, 2003
Finished planting lotuses in pots on the front terrace. I'd planted some about a week and a half ago in some large planter-type pots I already had that I'd used for some lotuses a few years ago. Those ones didn't survive a winter outside, even though lotuses are supposed to be hardy. They were rather expensive too -- "Mrs. Perry Slocum", "Momo Botan" & the American yellow lotus Nelumbo lutea -- costing from $25-50 a root -- ouch!!
So this time I'm trying some lotus roots I bought from the local Korean grocery store -- with luck, they'll grow and even if they don't grow, at least I'm not out so much money -- they only cost one or two dollars a pound. If they do grow and spread (lotuses are supposed to be invasive in earthen-bottomed ponds) I know I can chop up the extra roots to make chicken and lotus root soup. (I had that when I was in Singapore -- yum, yum!!) This is a plus since I try to do edible landscaping as much as possible. I wouldn't chop up the expensive lotus roots, but these ones from the Korean grocers? Into the pot they'll go!
My next water gardening project is to see if I can find fresh water chestnut tubers in some of the Asian food markets here in New York so I can try growing those too. I can always try to get some from the water gardening catalogues, but they'll be much more expensive -- about $5 for each plant & it'll take a few years before I'd be able to grow enough rootstock so that I can reliably grow them to eat.
I also started to put up some solar lights I'd bought last year on the front terrace. I stuck them in the mud at either end of the lotus pots I'd replanted. I have more to put out but it was getting a bit dark by the time I started to put out the solar lights, so I'll finish doing that tomorrow probably.
Wednesday, May 07, 2003
Planted the Red Anjou and Giant Korean pears today -- they were replacements for the ones I bought last year that didn't grow. I put them in the same spots as their predecessors -- hopefully they'll have better luck growing there . . .
Also put up two little American flags on the front porch for Memorial Day/4th of July -- I stuck them on either side of the front-facing half-pot at the top of the steps. I also made two little bows from some red-white-and-blue patriotic wired ribbon that I tied to the arbor at the front gate. The ribbons looked nice, so I may buy some more to put up on that same arbor.