this year I tried to get as much as possible covered with a mulch as I weeded and cleared areas to help keep the weeds and tough grass down, I bought a new garden toy, err I mean tool ;o) a small electric saw that could be used for cutting small tree branches, I would never attempt any large branches or major tree surgery, the saw has enabled me to get under the pine trees and so collect pine mulch and as I am finding lower down pine compost, I am making the most of what is available to me on island and even better in my garden, I also use cardboard and newspaper as mulches.
when I dug out the pampas grass earlier this year and added the divisions to the border around the damp meadow I mulched one side, (I had hoped to do 2 but the second is still waiting), the line of pebbles is because I put newspaper under the pine mulch to help kill off the grass here, ideally …. I would like to do this across the damp meadow, one day, one day, these first 7 photos have been taken over the last couple of months,
the willows that are still alive are just starting to recover after the winds in May 2011 killed off all the foliage for that year, I had put a good mulch down when they were planted 11 years ago but that finally deteriorated and I had not got a good mulch on since and … the weeds and grass were getting out of hand sooo I cut them down well gave the willows some slow release fertilizer and mulched with thick cardboard,
the blackthorn and ash planted in autumn 2011 are growing well and just needed a top up of mulch,
I did get the dogwood border mulched, I’d wanted to last year but failed to, I’ve been adding evergreen shrubs between the dogwoods which I am hoping will in time create a nice backdrop to the coloured stems in winter, the foreground has newspaper under the mulch and needs some thought as to planting as it is empty of plants at present, the shrub you can just see to the left is an ornamental quince (sorry I can’t remember the latin name),
I thought I’d show a couple of photos of where this mulch is coming from, under the pines and bags collected ready for use,
further in under the pines, this is an area I’ve only peered into previously as the branches criss crossed blocking the way, as I go deeper into the pine mulch I am finding bits of plastic bag and silver paper several inches down reminding me that that was once the surface,
the green manure has been growing well,
the next group of photos were taken today (Monday), I finally got the amelanchiers mulched and some of the bare soil, this is the instant garden by the birch trees I planted early this year, I’m glad I moved the foxgloves here they look better flowering together and they can seed here happily,
I stopped using grass as a mulch as the birds chuck it all over the place looking for bugs and as they had not touched the pine mulch I thought I was safe, never a good idea when gardening, just over a week ago they started chucking the pine mulch around, one part of me thinks ‘ungrateful little blighters’ (I try to make my garden bird friendly and this is my payback), another part of me thinks ‘I hope they are eating the bad bugs and slugs’, I put the blue line to indicate where the path runs on the left side, all the mulch on the path is courtesy of the birds!
but where I had newspaper under the pine mulch it is much worse! the stones might keep the paper down from the wind but not after the birds have ripped it!
the green manure, rye, vetch, tetraploid Italian rye grass and forage pea,
as it is today, ready for cutting and digging in, we have some wet weather just now but it should be dry by the end of the week, so the first dry day and I will cut and dig it in, I’ll dig out the free potatoes growing from ones I missed last year, I’ve already had some as I thought I’d take these before those I planted this year,
putting down the mulches has made those areas much easier to manage this year, one weed the mulch does not suppress is horsetail it pushes up but is easier to see and pull out,
last Wednesday as I was up early and had planned going to town I got the early bus at 8am as the bus went up the hill I saw that white bobtail so well known ….. rabbit alert! this moved me to action in the afternoon when I was back home, most veggies have wind proof around them but some peas planted in the protection of the alders were exposed to rabbits, not any more, a few willow sticks and a bit of chicken wire, the bare ground has recently been planted with French bean seeds,
a note, last week when I tried commenting on other wordpress blogs my comments were not appearing, one blogger told me she found my comment in her spam folder, I don’t know why wordpress is spamming my comments but I’m real, I really am, anyway tonight I left comments on 3 blogs and 2 didn’t show only one blog showed the comment I left, so if you find me in your spam folder please save me, thanks, I have occasionally found comments from real people in my spam folder as well, so it’s good to check it sometimes, x
update, I left a message for wordpress support last night and found a couple of replies this morning, apparently I’m not alone, it is an akismet (spam programme) problem and they are looking into it,
Embarrassed, very, very embarrassed, because of akismet sending my comments into the spam folder of blogs I decided to copy my comments into a word doc and try later, so a little while ago I tried the 2 blogs where my comments had failed last night, one of them posted, ya! Err nooooo, I had posted the comment for other blog, the wrong comment!!!
Isn’t it typical that that comment posted!!, then when I tried to leave an explanation, you’ve guess the comment would not post, I’m feeling so fed up and it’s ruining my pleasure of reading blogs, I’ve noticed of the comments I have left that akismet had put in the spam folder only one has appeared on a blog, so only one person checked their spam folder, I have found legitimate comments in my spam folder occasionally and so always check it, I’m surprised so few others do,
It the light of this I will only be able to ‘like’ wordpress blogs, my ability to comment on google/blogger blogs has decreased dramatically this year as most no longer allow people to comment with the ‘name/url’ option, thank heaven I can still comment on squarespace blogs, peace and joy to all x
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