Because my house is on a small hill, my priority for gardening is always this top area around it. However, I have a greenhouse and garden in the lower part of the yard and over the years I allowed it to turn into a helluva mess.
For the past few weeks Nicky, Margaret and I have been working on restoring the beds. I had Dean from Redline Bobcat, who’s a genius by the way, put in a gravel path to make it easier to access. Tomorrow a company’s coming to remove all foliage and then rototill so the entire area will be a sea of dust.
Alfalfa will begin to grow again next spring, and then I can buy a ride-on tractor mower and it’ll be all nice and flat and I can turn it into something lovely. But for now, my days are spent lugging grass-laden sod from beds via a shovel so we can plant vegies.
I’ve always alleged this yard’s gonna kill me one of these days. I’ve already dealt with the two trailers of mulch, and the other day when Juergen phoned to ask if I was ready for a third, I said absolutely not until I get the lower area into shape and then I can use more down in the vegetable beds.
But I don’t go to the gym anymore so the garden’s my way of getting worked out. It’s just too bad a lot of the workout leaves one so crippled that straightening up is a painful experience. I sure slept well last night after two solid hours of heavy, heavy shoveling.
Margaret participated and we were both happy when the ordeal had ended, and we could reward ourselves with a libation followed by dinner. And speaking of dinner, I had the Persnickety Women again the other evening and all the food was well-received.
When we do those happy hour events at each other’s homes we like to try out adorable little appies that women like to eat at that hour. I made a Jewish dish called knishes which none had eaten before and they all said they loved them. It’s a puff pastry filled with mashed potatoes and baked, so it’s a nice hot appetizer.
I also made little cocktail meatballs, deviled eggs, stuffed cherry tomatoes (with sour cream, cream cheese and dill) and skewers of kalamata olives, ham and sharp cheddar.
For dessert I made panna cotta which I’ve never tried before, and it was fine however a bit too stiff, so next time I think I’ll ace it.
I’ve taken a hard line with a lot of my plants as I removed all Russian sage because I just don’t like it. I had a pyracantha removed. Have you ever heard of it? The common name is Fire Thorn, and man, is that ever accurate. This plant can draw blood with its vicious big thorns.
I have about 18 dahlias in pots in the greenhouse ready to be planted so that’ll happen in the next week or so. Ditto with getting bedding plants for my pots around the house. What a joy May is, other than the body pain stuff of preparation.
I remember when we first moved here 29 years ago and a retired couple two doors down spent their days killing themselves in their yard and I thought wow, those people are nuts. And now I am the nut.
I’ve been planting my dahlia tubers also. I just found four packs of the Harlequin variety in a nursery. I was thrilled. These fringy sweethearts are harder to find than the plain variety. I’m hoping to press a few and see if they will keep those awesome colors.