Thursday, May 27, 2010

bugs are gone!

The ant/aphid infestation on my Rose of Sharon is completely gone. And since spraying my hollyhocks with Sevin I haven’t seen any more hollyhock sawfly larvae chomping away. They still haven’t bloomed, but I’m hopefully every day when I come home from work to catch a glimpse of color.

Last weekend I removed a portion of my Black-eyed Susan’s in the west side planting bed to make room for two more pepper plants and give my rosemary some more space. In addition to the new red and green bell peppers, I also planted an heirloom tomato in the driveway planting bed. I’m hoping it will get enough sun there, because I’m running out of space elsewhere.

Mr. Stripey, as he’s called, is an old-fashioned beefsteak that will have yellow and red stripes outside and mostly yellow coloring inside the fruit. It has tiny leaves and the flavor is supposed to be sweet and mild. We’ll see in approximately 56 days!

I think I initially underestimated the support my tomatoes would require. But now I regret skimping on the stake size, because my ‘big boy’ and ‘black cherry’ tomatoes have already grown almost to the top of their stakes. So, I will have to purchase taller/stronger stakes to support these veggies and re-tie all of the tomatoes. Bummer.

I also (finally) replaced the pansies in my pots by the front steps with a ‘lemon chiffon’ million bells (Calibrachoa) in each pot. I’m not usually one for monochromatic pot plantings, but my front door is hardly used and there’s enough going on in the nearby planting beds to warrant simple pots.

My oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) have started blooming on both sides of the front door and look really great behind my patch of catmint (Nepeta) to the right of the front door. To balance that, the Nepalese columbines I planted on the left side of the front door bloomed well and are slowly taking over one side of that planting bed.

The Hellebores are still blooming and look great next to the sensitive ferns (Onoclea sensiblis) out front. My Iris have finished blooming and I need to weed the bed by the mailbox to get it ready for the daylilies which will start to bloom soon.

The only other annual I have added this season is a ‘Mini Blue-Veined’ Supertunia. I added this to my blue pot with the Salvia and Spirea. The salvia has already started blooming and the Spirea will soon follow.

My herb pot is not looking so good. The cilantro started to bolt last week, so I cut off some of the flower buds. The basil, which has been looking ill ever since the floods, now looks awful. My parsley and thyme are the only things doing well. They seem to have had good drainage and decent sun where they are. I may have to start over with new cilantro and basil, maybe even from seed.

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