Humble Pie, and Other Delicacies

So, remember how last week I swore up and down that I NEVER planted anything in July anymore, because “Ho, ho, aren’t I so smart now?” or something along those lines… Yeah, well, maybe it’s good for us every so often to make such definite statements—gives our guardian angels a great laugh. So, here I am this week—yup, it’s still July folks—planting my fool head off! How does this happen?! I’ll tell you.

A certain friendly neighbor of mine, who happens to love gardening and plants as well, offered to share a bunch of starts with me. Starts = baby plants! I can’t turn down free plants! It’s not in my DNA. Plus, she had some plants that I’ve been wanting—feverfew! lady’s mantle!—plus several more that I am happy to have. It was a short contest between conflicting core values: never plant in the heat of July vs. here, take some free plants! There was a clear winner. I filled up every pot I had brought along with me, and then some.

Okay, okay. I will give you a list of everything I brought home, because I can tell you are DYING to know. (HA! Yeah right. Just humor me, alright?)

Lady’s mantle: the leaves are as beautiful as the flowers! (Not sure why these have different color veins.)

Lady’s mantle: the leaves are as beautiful as the flowers! (Not sure why these have different color veins.)

Feverfew (as mentioned) x 12

Lady’s mantle x 3

White irises x 3—big and beautiful; these things are at least 3 feet tall;

White perennial phlox x 10

Heuchera—one long, ungainly stalk that I split into 2 pieces

Purple salvia x 1

Wednesday I planted half of the feverfew, all 3 lady’s mantle, the salvia, one phlox start, and the heuchera. I have been under some pressure to get the rest done. You see, we are leaving on a trip tomorrow morning—Saturday. In this hot weather, I had my doubts that these starts would live through our absence, unless I could get them into the ground.

There they are. Yum!

There they are. Yum!

Thursday was going to be Round 2 of planting. Best laid plans often go awry, and all of that, because instead we ended canning apricots. My awesome in-laws brought up several boxes of apricots and even stayed to help us can them. 36 jars of apricots and 18 jars of jam later, we got that taken care of. I’m happy that we did it—we love apricots! However, it didn’t leave much time for more planting. I got a little bit more planting in during the 45 minute window after I put kids to bed and before dark. I also acquired approximately 53 more mosquito bites during that same time frame.

Today, though. It had to happen! I got up and walked out the door to sprinkling rain! What?! In July? I was LOVING it! Perfect transplanting weather, for the win! It stayed cool and rained on and off all day. I was so happy!

This was my Planting Priority Plan (or PPP for short!):

  1. Last 3 feverfew: these were in the smaller 6” pots and I didn’t think they would make it while we’re gone unless they’re in the ground. The only setback was that I wasn’t 100% sure where I wanted to put them. I ended up planting them in the back corner flowerbed, around the birdbath.

  2. Phlox: these would have been #1, because they kept wilting on me, but the place I wanted to plant them was very dry (side task: replace the sprinkler head there!). So, I needed to put the water on that area. The rain helped me out there, but I did add a little extra water prior to planting just to soften up the under layers of dirt. Some of these also went into that back corner flowerbed— I think planted 3 different groups there—then I put one right in the middle of my front oval bed. Oh, and a few over by the honeysuckle bush.

  3. Irises: of all my precious pass-along plants (PPP for short—again), these got the vote of “Most Likely to Survive While We’re Gone.” So they were my last priority for planting, and I actually didn’t get to them today. Not stressing about it.

As usual, it took a long time to get all these plants in the ground, because I was pulling out bindweed for 20-30 minutes first in every location. Sigh. An Abomination of Bindweed.

I’m very excited to add all these plants to my flowerbeds! The white will be especially useful in making arrangements, because it goes with all the other colors. Yes, they are all going into my flowerbeds at this point. I want to get set up with raised beds that are full of perennials just for cutting, but I have not made that happen just yet. I think when I take out that dead cherry tree out back, I want to put a raised bed in its place and fill it up with coneflowers and daisies of different varieties. #goals

That rain today was such a blessing! I was able to get all my outside chores done, then come in and put together flower arrangements for my 2 business subscribers, get packed, get my baby’s clothes packed, and still make it down to my niece’s rehearsal dinner down in Provo (1.5 hour drive.) Busy day!

My husband brought me home a new hose, sprinkler, and timer for the garden, so that it will get watered while we’re gone, bless him. I still need to figure out drip irrigation, but I haven’t taken the time to sit down and do it. Our sprinkler from last year—and our best hose—both sprung big leaks this summer, so that has been an issue.

We’re off! I’ll see you next week—maybe I’ll have some fabulous wildlife pictures to share. :)