Monday, May 7, 2012

It's Spring at last!

    Still haven't cut the grass, though lots of our neighbours have done. Much progress has been made in the flower beds, including some splitting up and moving things.
Bush cherries: Back: Romeo, front left Juliet, right: Crimson Romance.

     I received the long-awaited package from Veseys last week, and put the cherry trees into pots in the greenhouse, but I foolishly decided to plant the hydrangeas into the shrub border right away. It's been quite cold at the nights, so I have had to cover them up. I should have hardened them off - but I was so excited, I didn't think of it. There were three - of the 'Hardy Hydrangea" variety. I planted the first, Hydrangea paniculata 'DVPpinky', on the east side of the central shrub bed, and the second, Hydrangea aborescens 'Abetwo' on the west side of the same bed. The third I put in front of the rugosa roses in the west bed. It is Hydrangea aborescens 'NCHAI', ppaf, cbraf. Common names in order, with sizes at maturity, are "Pinky Winky", 6 - 8 feet tall & wide; "Incrediball", 4-5 feet tall & wide, and "Invincibelle Spirit", 3-4 feet tall & wide. Hope they survive.
Blueberries, mulched with sawdust

      I took the truck up the Black Creek Road last week and dug up some lowbush blueberries - easy peasy, as the road machine had been and they were hanging out over the road, with almost no soil underneath them. I had started a bed for them, and when I got back with the plants I Googled and found what they need - basically, manure and sawdust to increase acidity, so that was easy to provide. I think it must be acidic there already, as I have put them near the ones that have been in our garden for years. After I got them planted, I mulched with more sawdust and watered well. I'm not expecting a lot of fruit this year, but I know they are a late and sweet variety because they performed well on the road last year. Apparently I am to let them fruit one year and cut them back the next - or maybe every three years. The pros do every two. The ones we have haven't ever been cut back, of course.

     In knitting news, I have started a spiral scarf using black Kroy and a long-repeat multicolour - Elann's Sock it to Me dankai. It's short-row wedges between black borders which really set off the colour changes well.  I had gotten a bit obsessed with the pattern after seeing it on Ravelry, and went to Owl's Hollow looking for a long-repeat colour. All they had was the Noro cotton-and nylon in a couple of truly ugly colours, so I bought the Kroy and came home, and ordered some Chroma from Knit Picks. And then I was looking for something else in my stash page on Ravelry, and saw the two skeins of dankai I'd bought some time ago, and I was off! TGFR!

       I have completed the linen closet (but for the doors), and today I dry-fitted the cradle for the bathtub. I have to wait for Fred to come home to help me lift the tub on to the cradle, and then probably take it all apart to nail it into place, and then together. The tub needs a bit of sawing to make the holes for the water attachments and I'll have to cut the cradle as well, just not sure where yet.This will have to come after the dry-fitting. And then it's the plumber again to fit the drains and attach the water supply, and we will have a bathtub again after - seven years?
     I painted the walls around the tub space, as I thought it would be easier without the tub in place. Of course I still haven't decided on a colour for the walls, but at least the gyproc is primed. 
       I have plans to tile the walls around the tub, just up 9 inches or so - as I am hoping the days of splashing in the tub are behind us. I am surprised how finished it looks, I think because I put a bit of pine along the front, rather than the rough 2 x 4s. I will probably put tile there as well - at least,  I do have the tile for it, and if it looks good I'll go for it.

     The end is in sight. Then I can spend ALL my time in the garden.

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