Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Planting Things

Last week, the meeting I hosted also happened to be plant exchange day for the club. Anyone who wants to brings a plant, and then gets to take another home, but I guess not everyone who brought one took one away with them, because there were quite a few of them left. They've been sitting on my porch, languishing since then, because I've been so busy with my holiday company.

Today though, my company has gone home, and it's not a freezing cold, rainy day, so I decided to get those poor things into the ground. My front landscaping now has the lovely additions of a variegated hosta, a dusty miller, and some of the plant that my mom calls "Live Forever" and my dad calls "Never Die". The Live-Forever-Never-Die is a plant that gets broad bunches of pink flowers on stalks that rise from succulent looking foliage.

I put a pink aster by the back deck and added pink yarrow to the herb bed. The only thing left is a cactus/succulent type in a pot that I don't recognize or know how to care for. I left it in it's pot next to my pot of hens and chicks for now, and we'll see how it does until I can ask my plant neighbor what to do with it.

While I was looking for places to plant things, I decided to weed out the tiny bed that I'd bordered with a plastic pound in border for some chocolate mint last year. I thought the mint was dead and figured I'd clean the grass out of that spot for the aster, but as I was weeding, I found my mint had come back. I actually smelled it before I saw it. I mulched it really well with some rotted chicken bedding, so I'm hoping that I can smother the weeds and grass and give that mint a chance.

While I was mulching, I mulched around the new aster really well too, to make sure that it gets a chance without the grass choking it. And I added a thick layer to the little catnip bed as well, to smother the grass that's been encroaching on it from the side.

I also started my seeds today. I've been waiting for Ben to do it with me, since the garden is mostly his thing, but he's been so busy with work lately, we figured I had to do it myself or it wouldn't get done at all, and we'd have to buy seedlings. I used some of those jiffy plant flats with the little pellets that puff up when they get wet that Ben's mom got him for his birthday. They each hold 25 pellets and there were four of them, so I started 100 plants. Hopefully. Lots of different kinds of peppers, some broccoli, loofa, watermelon, 35 opalka tomatoes, lots of tommy toe and currant tomatoes, some sunberry, and some herbs, like lavender, dill, and camomile. I'm not usually very successful at these sorts of things, but I figure that the best way to learn is to experiment a lot and just pick it up as I go. And that I can always buy seedlings at the farmer's market, if I have to!

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2 comments:

Captain's Wife - Jennifer said...

That plant exchange sounds really neat! And I am totally jealous that you are getting things in the ground! :) Too muddy here. Good luck with your seedlings! And you gave me a great idea of what to do with the dirty duckling bedding I cleaned out today...I was just going to throw it in the compost heap but using it as mulch sounds like a great idea!

Bethany said...

Jennifer, it's technically too muddy here too, but it was either put them in mud, or let them die, since most of them were just attached to clumps of dirt in plastic bags, and they were bordering dead. Good thing is, they've all perked right up since I got them in the ground and gave them lots of water yesterday.

I'm not sure if it's okay to use fresh bedding for compost or not... people always talk about "burning" plants. I don't pretend to know what that means, but it sounds bad. This bedding that I used has been piled and rotting for about six months. Which, with my luck, is probably still not long enough.

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