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Spring Project started today

18 years ago

It's cold and it's windy to say the least, but I finally started this spring's landscaping project today. Took the day off as the car went in for some maintenance and I finally engage muscle and sweat into that which I've mused and dreamed of this winter..

While I've recently purchased a digital camera I did not photograph the "before" pic.

For those of you who are interested, I will post pics later (of the finished product).

The project: Removing a row of 40 yo taxus that were planted in my back yard of of my ranch (of 8 years). The yews were planted in front of a slightly raised (2') deck that is 36' x 12'. There were 6 of them and today I used the lopers to cut down the tops (I've been trimming them up for privacy and to show the trunk). Then used the bow saw to cut back the trunk to nearly ground level.

Fun part will be excavating these babies (as I've done a few in my day).

It's amazing of the additional vertical space that's now apparent and which I visualized when I decided to tackle this. To say there's more room in the backyard is also an understatement as 40 yo yews had a diameter (from deck edge to front of the plant of nearly 8').

All of the cuttings have been piled up curbside, and I am lucky to live in a town where the Township comes by weekly (this time of year) with a front end loader to pick this up.

Plantings? Something old. Something new. Something borrowed. Something blue.....well, I don't know about that last one, but visualize if you can. The garden bed is already in place. I'll just need to rototill and edge what is there at this time. Plus there's 2 drums of compost that will be worked in along with the oakleaf litter that now predominates as mulch in this garden bed.

An ilex verticillata 'Winter Gold' will be planted off of the right of the steps as one enters the backyard (no fence) from the driveway. The slate walkway leads to the deck steps. Ilex will be to the right of the stairs and will have plenty of room to grow out with plenty of room in this site (as I have mature Winter Reds elsewhere on the property).

As one moves into the yard (and not up the steps of the deck), I will be planting 'something new' this case, I'm going to take advantage of the neighboring orange berries of Winter Gold by planting Hammelis, either 'Diane' (a purple) or 'Kohankie Red' (another purple) which Rare Finds is carrying and offering for sale this year. Moving along this segment of the bed (it is interrupted by a short stairway nearly in the middle of the deck as one would exit the sliding glass doors strait down the 2 step stairs into the yard).....I will be placing a transplant from elsewhere in the garden, in this case, an evergreen, viburnum 'judii', which will provide some late April fragrance. The final 'anchor plant' and one that will serve as sort of a left sentinel of the stairs will be aronia 'brilliantissima'. Another will be planted on the other side of the stairs.

After the stairway break (and the aforementioned 2nd aronia), I'll be planting (again moving plants from elsewhere on my property): fothergilla major 'Mt. Airy', calicarpa japonica (a 4' transplant) aka 'beautyberry' or viburnum 'burkwoodii' which would be another transplant from elsewhere in the garden and could stand to be moved to a more friendly microsite. With a Japaneese Maple in the 20' class at the right corner of the deck, I will not be planting any shrubs near it because of the rootsysten if acer. A friend has offered over a dozen penstemon 'Husker Red' which I'm going to plant and hope for the best.

There's some infilling for both bed segments. There's two dec. azaleas that I picked up last year (a white and a red, unanmed) which I'll interplant (the red near the judii for color contrast as I believe the red goes off the 1st week of may be Gallipoli Red...don't know).

Wish me luck. I'm just about done with the grunt end of it. And I look forward to planting as early as next week.

Pics to follow once I get the hang of being able to post them. earth live again.


This backyard site gets vg morning into early afternoon sun.

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