April 24, 2021

I spent a few hours yesterday afternoon walking through the Consumnes River Preserve. The outer loops are worth the effort, ending in a gentle walk through the forest down along the river edge. This trip was a reconnaissance for the fall when the sandhill cranes are expected to come to the marshlands.

I pulled a four hour shift today with the gas powered and hand held grass trimmer that I borrowed from Mike. He uses titanium line as the only feasible answer to the dense overgrowth around this property and down the hill. He also suggested that mowing more often would allow for less difficulty. I swear that the grass and weeds grew overnight.

I cleared the wilderness border along the tree edge of the Front Slope Garden. In the process I released the photinia from its jungle grass dungeon. I also mowed the entire back slope around the curve of the retaining wall, even if I did not clear all the way down to the Fire Lane. The cleared grass will hopefully give the matilija poppies room to grow and spread seeds. Matilda is showing more buds. I finished the shift by digging out thistle and clearing the view below the gazebo.

The sweet pea is fulfilling its promise by the first ever strawberry pink blooms on the vines climbing up to the roof of the gazebo. The companion jasmine is also in bloom and received supplemental water. The heucheras in the Large Planter Box has a splendid array of shafts of tiny scarlet flowers. I trimmed the suckers off the base of the large crape myrtle to not divert energy from the main branches. The electric pink and cherry red ice plant is in full bloom on the downward back slope.

The weeding project today was around the white lantana in the Back Border Garden. The tricolor sedum has become a daily joy showing signs of ongoing new growth and spread. I trimmed the artemisia again and will need to understand its growth pattern. Perhaps I will try a more drastic pruning next fall.

High winds this afternoon as I worked, with an incoming cold front that promises rain tomorrow.

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