March 7, 2020

I was up early and started work at 7.00 because rain is expected by 11.00.  The past six week drought period is a near record.

I clocked in a good three hours hauling in new topsoil and leveling out the new bed beside the flagstones. When filled, the slope is less steep than I envisioned, and I do not see the need to raise or supplement the retaining wall.  I planted the artemesia prominently, halfway between the white lantana creeping out of the buried pot and Myrtle of the Far East.  Even with new topsoil and organic mix, the planting hole still drains slowly.  Plant Starter may help.

I cut back the irrigation drip to 15 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes at night, front and back.  The beds are showing excessive water accumulation, even at the end of a prolonged dry spell.  The ground was soggy around the lantana and mimulus, and the stone border at the edge of the back lawn was an arroyo.

I laid Mike’s Mulch around the new lantana, mimulus and artemesia.  The mulch pile is mostly dry  at this point with partial rot underneath. The incoming rain should soak it in.

I filled in the hole where I dug out the sprinkler head, added topsoil up to the edge of the citrus planter box and scattered grass seed.  I noticed water accumulating around the sprinkler heads, most likely because of poor drainage.

The vinegar recipe went down heavily between the flagstones and in the warning track along the fence.  Hard to judge its effect because the weeds grow so fast.  I attached the new 2 gallon flag drippers at the end of the feeders to the lantana and mimulus, although I am not entirely sure how they work.

A long soaking rain begin nearly at 11.00.  I spent the afternoon reading The Luminaries in preparation for the New Zealand trip. There is much pattering in the gutters as I write tonight.


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