fenwillow
member
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Fraser Valley, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

11 Aug '15 6:34 am
I'm so impressed with your squash, gourds and watermelon! I've tried muskmelon (like cantaloupe) here with no success, but am wondering if I would have succeeded in the heat this year. You'll get the heat reliably there, but this summer MAY have been an exception. I guess time will tell.

My oakleaf hydrangea flowers are now an even darker pink and it put on quite a bit of new growth in the last cooler, damper period so I'm really happy with it. I agree with MacFlax that picking the right plant can be frustrating, but it's so wonderful when it does work out. I bought three identical plants last fall and planted two in the clay soil and one in a pot with light soil. The only survivor was the one in the pot so I think it's safe to say that the overly wet soil killed the other two, not the actual cold temperature. They may have had a better chance if I'd amended the soil more and planted them earlier, but at least I have one left to admire. I just bought three Maltese Cross plants on sale for $1.49 each... they'll be going in a raised bed to overwinter and into pots with light soil in the meantime. :wink:

It's cool here now, so I better get out there and pot them up.
FenWillow,
Fraser Valley, British Columbia
Canada

gordonf
Happy Collector
User avatar
Lillooet, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

23 Aug '15 9:03 am
August 22 already! The seasons are shifting, with cooler evenings and days with lots of grasshoppers jumping around. The sun goes behind the mountains now around 6:30 and it's dark by 8:00.

The cooler weather certainly agrees with many of my plants, especially the tuberous begonias, which seem to be experiencing a reawakening, with richer coloured blooms than in high summer. I've eaten my first Striped Russian melons (like mild canteloupes but with thin skins and white flesh), lots of tomatoes, cucumbers and ground cherries. Recently seeded a fall crop of Bok Choi and Chinese Cabbages. They've all come up and been sprayed with rhubarb tea to protect them against earwigs. In a week or so they should be ready for transplanting and mulching with straw.

Here are the latest pix.
Aug 15, 2015- 1.jpg
This small hydrangea is very low to the ground, with weak, almost vine-like stems but it's not a climbing hydrangea. Does anyone have an idea what variety it could be? It just appeared in the garden!
Aug 15, 2015- 2.jpg
One of the red begonias with its very dark leaves and rich red flowers.
Aug 20, 2015- 7.jpg
The inside of a Striped Russian melon. This one was only about 3 inches long, but was very sweet.
Aug 20, 2015- 6.jpg
The new rubber tiled patio that leads to and from the garden shed and the new back door to the garage. I'm very happy with it!
Aug 20, 2015- 5.jpg
One end of the new little patio, showing the garage on the left and the garden shed on the right. At the end is a yellow trumpet vine, a Japanese forest grass, "Evergold", and a golden Creeping Jenny.
Aug 20, 2015- 4.jpg
From the same spot, this view shows the second yellow Trumpet Vine, another Hydrangea and various others in front of the garden shed entrance.
Aug 20, 2015- 10.jpg
The Hugelbed, taken from the tiled patio; quite a jungle, eh?
Aug 20, 2015- 1.jpg
This is a panoramic view of the main yard taken from the front of the garden. Eventually, most of this will be surfaced with crushed limestone with an L-shaped grape arbour at the left rear where the fence (covered with gourds now) around the Hugelbed is. It's hard to describe what I want in words, but since I have to draw it out for my builder, I'll post the plan when it's done. I already have the grapes planted, underneath all those gourds, so next year the grapevines should fill out that area, providing some shade for the flowerbed outside the Hugelbed.
Aug 20, 2015- 3.jpg
One last pic of the tiled patio.

MacFlax
member
Canberra, Australia

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

23 Aug '15 3:57 pm
Gordon, I am in awe of what you achieve.

gordonf
Happy Collector
User avatar
Lillooet, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

23 Aug '15 5:04 pm
Thanks, MacFlax! I hope nobody thinks I'm bragging. I just really like sharing with others who know what I'm talking about. Also, it's nice to discuss plans with others who may have tried them and can keep me from making mistakes!

MacFlax
member
Canberra, Australia

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

23 Aug '15 9:37 pm
I don't see it as bragging, I really enjoy your enthusiasm.

gordonf
Happy Collector
User avatar
Lillooet, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

24 Aug '15 11:52 am
Thanks! Here's the quick sketch of part of the design for the proposed new grape arbour scheduled for the Spring. I hope it makes sense. I want everything to be suspended from guy wires from the tops of a line of posts that will form an L-shape around the front of the Hugelbed. the vines will be able to climb up the fence that keeps Willy out of the bed, then over the suspended "roof" of wide lattice. There will be a shaded flower bed underneath, which is why I only want one row of supports.
Grape Arbour Sketch1.jpg
This is obviously not to scale (couldn't find my ruler!) but should give a pretty good idea of the basic consteruction.

MacFlax
member
Canberra, Australia

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

24 Aug '15 7:51 pm
Ooh, I like that!

gordonf
Happy Collector
User avatar
Lillooet, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

25 Aug '15 5:24 am
Thanks again! So the sketch is clear enough, then? My reason for designing it that way is that since the Hugelbed is relatively small and gets full sun, I didnT want any more shade there. That's why the arbour doesn't overhang the bed but just provides the fence to keep Willy out. All of the overhang is on the outside, about 3 feet or so, for the grapes, and to provide shade during the hottest part of the day for the flowerbed below.

From the house one will see the flowers with a green wall from the grapes behind.

fenwillow
member
User avatar
Fraser Valley, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

25 Aug '15 6:09 am
I like the arbour design! Good thinking Gordon. I don't think you're bragging when you share your garden pics and talk about the changes. I also like to share with others, and what better place to share gardening ideas than with other gardeners. I also have a grape arbour, but due to my somewhat dubious planning skills, it doesn't really get as much sun as it should anymore. My love of trees has allowed a few weeping willows to invade... luckily I have lots of room, but the grape arbour does suffer, as does the greenhouse. This is one of the reasons I admire your planning so much. I've noticed that I'm much less likely to make big garden mistakes now, but it's taken me years of practice to get here. You're definitely not bragging... just benefiting from contemplation, planning and experience. I applaud your enthusiasm, your planning and your persistence!
FenWillow,
Fraser Valley, British Columbia
Canada

gordonf
Happy Collector
User avatar
Lillooet, BC, Canada

Re: Gordon's Garden Diary

25 Aug '15 10:13 am
Hi, Fenwillow; Thanks to you, too! In my previous garden, I, too, planted too many trees in too small a space and eventually shaded most veggies out. Hopefully, I won't repeat that mistake here!

The other day, a photographer friend made a video of me explaining my garden and some of the principles behind it. I think it turned out pretty well except that I look and walk like such an old man!!

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