Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Adventures of weeding and mulch

It's that time of year! Time to be in the garden and/or flower beds sprucing things up and helping to give new life to a 'winter drab' landscape. I wish I had the talents to make my beds interesting year round - I don't. Each year I try to learn something new or add a plant that has interest at a time of year different from what is already there. But, this year I start over. Sort of. I am simply taking over a job that was started in 1951. Unfortunately, not much has been done over the past several years. So, now the hard work begins.

Weeds. Sooooo many weeds.

Can you see? On the right, the area I have weeded. On the left, what I started with! I have discovered I REALLY need to get myself a metal claw. I have been using the kid plastic ones for the past couple of years. I know, I think I am old enough to graduate to a metal one. The next trip to the lawn/garden center and I will be getting myself one - along with a pair of gloves as mine are MIA.

Thanks to my MIL, I have transplanted 7 violets from the 'lawn'. Here is one of the plants. I do love FREE plants! 


She also gave me a new tip. When without garden gloves, BEFORE you start digging in the dirt - fill your fingernails with soap. Use a bar of soap and run your fingernails over it until they are filled with soap. This prevents them from getting filled with dirt and adds a little strength so they are less likely to break. GENIUS! This is something she used to do years ago. A bar of soap is getting added to my gardening tools for those time I don't have or can't successfully use my gloves.


Now, I have about 60' of beds around the house. That's a guess, but they are on 3 sides of the house. All of which have been taken over by weeds. Since, it will take me a while to get through all that, I decided I needed to get some mulch and cover the beds as I go. Otherwise, by the time I finish, I would have to go back and start over again. 

So, off to the dump I went to get some mulch. Here in NC, we get '3 cubic yards' (really more like 5) for $25. Love that! Unfortunately, the truck got a flat tire on the way home. So, after about 3.5 hours I was home again ready to unload the truck. Our unexpected delay was actually not bad and gave me the opportunity to meet some wonderful people. Luckily, I was child free at the time. PHEW. And when I got home, my oldest wanted to unload. OK!!!

I have gotten through about 15' so far. There are a few things I left behind because I really don't know what they are. If they don't do anything over the next year, they will be removed. There are several plants that probably need to be moved and trimmed. But, since I have my hands full with the weeding all the other aspects will wait a year. 

And yes, Ibuprofen in my friend.

Have you started your landscape beds yet? 
What is your favorite plant in your garden? 
Is there a plant you wish you had?


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