Back to early spring temperatures this morning after two very hot days. This has been a most unusual spring weather-wise, but there’s something to be said for a respite like this before the brutally hot days yet to come (if any, cause who knows?). It’ll be a good day to get out and tie up all the branches I pruned from the honeysuckles and cedars out front. I have an enormous pile to sort out, cut up and bundle up. Doing the actual pruning is kind of fun, but I dislike the clean-up; that would be the most appealing part of paying someone else to do this job. Oh well, the honeysuckles look much improved, at least. I’m pretty sure those shrubs have been here since the house was built, they’re so old and woody. I cut out a ton of dead wood so with any luck they will actually flower properly next year.
The two 20-foot cedars haven’t been properly pruned since we’ve owned the house (15 years!) so they’re ratty and overgrown. Didn’t do much to them except trim some branches to open a path to the water and power outlets. The job of properly pruning them might have to go to a professional; the problem is finding one that I trust. I hired a company (after an internet search) to trim the cedar hedge and Japanese willow in the back garden and they didn’t do a fantastic job. In fact, my neighbour commented, “You paid for someone to do that??” It hardly looked like they made a dent. Somewhat embarrassing given this neighbour is a total do-it-yourselfer. At least I didn’t have to clean up after them.
I recently found a single stem of a rose that I’d given up for dead poking its head through the crowded bee balm, perennial geranium and coneflower and decided that if it were going to have a chance of survival I would have to find it a better home. I had just dug an extension to my long windy central garden bed (mentioned in my last post) so I gave it a place of honour there, right next to the bird bath. I’m excited that it survived the upheaval and may yet give me some of the wonderful white roses I couldn’t resist when I bought it. My mission to eventually go grass-free in the Tranquil Garden has made steps (about 5) and now I have to lift the mower over a flower bed in order to do the whole yard. It would be lovely to just have paths running through everywhere instead of the lawn that keeps getting overgrown and ugly because I hate mowing it.
Talking about mowing (we were, weren’t we?), I pulled out my ancient electric mower yesterday after leaving it under the deck (under the winter tires and other junk) for two years. It looked even rustier than ever but I gave it some oil and it started up no problem. I can even adjust the height still! It did a great job on the foot-tall dandelions I call a front lawn. If you have a GE mower, circa 1980’s, don’t ditch it! I have no idea how old it is because I got it second-hand from somewhere when we bought our first house in 1993. No joke!
Music, anyone? Here’s a gem that my husband, Dave, dug up from somewhere: “Y’a d’la joie!” sung by Maurice Chevalier. Assez charmant!