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Here comes the sun … for now

March 31, 2013

We’ve hit a little bump on the kitchen project … Eric is recovering from abdominal surgery and won’t be back in renovation form for a few weeks. He’ll be able to creep up on lightweight tasks as he recovers, but hauling wood and cabinets up and down the stairs is out for the time being.

Having Eric out of commission has made me appreciate how much he really does around here every day. Suddenly I have to work at keeping the house running (oh, poor me). And that includes the outdoor chores, as well, which I’ve been ignoring as I obsess about the kitchen.

After a warmish, snowless winter, spring arrived this weekend with summer-like intensity. Of course, being the Pacific Northwest, it’ll be back to endless rain in a few days, but sun and pushin’ 70° is making the plants really excited. Including the weeds. Especially the weeds. So this morning I slathered my pasty white Seattle winter skin with SPF 50 sunblock and set out to tame the wild yard.

long grass and dandelion

First, I pruned the roses—long overdue. The previous owner used to live a few blocks away, and always admired this house’s roses as he walked into town. When the house came up for sale, he jumped at the chance … in 1945. I’m not a big rose aficionado, but I love that story, so I’ve maintained these old roses in his memory since I bought the house in 1984.  I’ll show you the rose garden when it’s in bloom … and after I eradicate the damned moles and weeds. It’s not ready for its close-up quite yet.

The grass had grown to ridiculous lengths. Luckily, the lawn mower started, but the grass was so long I couldn’t use the self-propel feature. I actually had to PUSH the beast through the jungle.

Shaggy grass in front yard

Checkers played possum when I suggested he help dig up all those dandelions.

Cat lying on pavers

The work was hard, but signs of spring were all around me. I watched the leaves on this Japanese maple unfurl as the day progressed.

Small Japanese maple in the sun

The Chinese windmill palm has several new fronds.

Chinese windmill palm with shaodw pattern

The sun shone through a curtain of weeping birch catkins …

Sunlights through weeping birch catkinss

and made the Mt Fuji cherry tree glow.

Mt. Fuji cherry tree in bloom

The euphorbia gets bigger every year. The flower clusters hang their heads down until they are ready to straighten up and bloom. They last all summer.

Euphorbia in bloom

Chex hung out with me all day. He’s a good garden buddy. Here he shows off the tulips, which are just about to open.

Black and white cat with tulip buds

Fred, though, is ambivalent about gardening.

Tuxedo cat next to garden clogs on steps

Had Fred known about this little guy (only about 1.5 inches long!), who narrowly escaped being frappéd by the lawnmower, he might have shown more interest.

Tree frog in moss

So here’s the fruit of my labor … neither edged nor weeded, but lots of dandelions temporarily lost their heads. Plenty more shine in the gardens. At least it looks like whoever lives here cares a little bit. As Eric would say, it’s a start.

Front yard with mowed lawn

If only I didn’t have to go to work this week, I’d have this place whipped into shape! The weatherman is already warning of rain, but it’s been a glorious Easter weekend. No complaints!

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From → Garden

9 Comments
  1. The plants are amazing! And mowing the lawn definitely is a good start…..

  2. Lazy Checkers! I am impressed with your success for one day’s work and cannot wait until I can get out in the garden. I hope Eric convalesces quickly!

    • I almost feel guilty posting this because I know so much of the country is still dealing with snow, but I also know the rain will return here and it will feel like winter again. I have to enjoy it while it lasts!

  3. Judy permalink

    Good job on the lawn. Your flowers and trees are beautiful. Wish they could survive our hot, hot climate.

    • I think designing a xeriscape garden would be fun–and challenging! If our climate keeps changing, maybe I’ll get the chance! Last summer we lost one of our loveliest trees to the drought… made me so sad.

  4. I went out in my yard today and spread some weed and feed. I raked some leaves I never got rid of from the fall and found a snake ewwwl. I was looking at the weeds in my flower beds and decided to throw some of the weed and feed on it also. I probably will have to go out there and pull them myself. hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. So many things to do so little time!!

    • Thanks for stopping by, Ms. Jay! I just checked out your blog, and your little house is SWEET! I’m looking forward to reading more of your posts. Happy gardening!

  5. “frappéd by the lawnmower” – LMAO!!! i’m glad the little guy escaped that fate.

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