May 15, 2019

Rain is forecast for the next seven days, an unseasonable late spring rain. I usually expect the dry season to begin on May 1.  Not that I am complaining.

I had an early run to Jackson Tire to check on a rogue tire pressure indicator.  From there I went on to Lowe’s for mulch and a review of their stock in edibles.  I found two varieties of cherry tomatoes, mint and tomatillos.  MJ’s tomatillo salsa is a fond memory.  For extra measure I picked up a dianthus is an unusual deep crimson purple.  The dianthus will fill the spot where the Marguerite daisy blew away last winter.  The pale cream-colored marigold will be in the container on the mezzanine level, cozying up to the water spigot.  I use that spigot once a week to draw irrigation water for the indoor plants, and while I am at it I can keep the marigold moist.

I planted in the rain later this morning, what the Irish call a soft rain.  I understand that a soft rain is one that does not penetrate a woolen coat.  I tucked in the aptenia and daisies, adding soil amendment and Plant Starter to avoid transplant shock.  The pots with succulents will come later, when the dry season may eventually come.  I also applied mulch around the Japanese euonymus, bulbine and daisies.

The carpet roses in border boxes are showing buds but also prior dead growth.  I need to investigate how to clear that growth on a low-lying rose.

The weather cleared in the afternoon, as I was watching from the office.  I removed the terminal camellia from the pot and discovered that its roots were deeply bound.  I will try to the save the ivy that Judy planted in the pot around the late camellia.  I added new potting soil and a generous dose of a new commercial plant starter with vitamin B-1.   I hoping to benefit from the rain forecast for the next week to establish the April Remembered camellia.

I planted the tomatoes, tomatillos and mint in the water trough turned herb garden.  For right now I have long stakes to support the tomatoes as they hopefully grow, secured by gardening twine.  I also trimmed the Saint Francis rock rose but kept it shoulder high, to give the birds the option of not roosting on his head.

Late in the afternoon I weeded the back slope below the summer house.  The weeds are back but could be pulled out by hand.   I need to watch the overperforming sprinkler head by the rock rose that seems to be sending water over the retaining wall and down the slope.  I was pleased to see that Mattie, the Matilija poppy, is now well established and growing.

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