Saturday, October 29, 2005


That gazebo that you see in the picture below has been needing concrete pads under the legs since we put it up for graduation in the spring. Well, we finally got it done today since it was such a nice afternoon. For concrete, you should have a hammer drill. It goes in like butter! Luckily I bought one a few years ago for another project I was working on. It was $25 to rent it and about $100 to buy it. I wasn't sure how long I'd need it so it just seemed like a reasonable thing to just go ahead and buy the drill. I was so glad that I did. It took us about an hour to get the whole thing done.

We have been putting that off for so long and it ended up being so easy that I feel silly I usually do after getting something done that I have been avoiding for too long. Especially when it ends up being not such a big deal after all.

Oh, well. Now I'm off to avoid the rest of my garden chores!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Fall Garden

Even though it means that I am nearing the end of my gardening season. I have a lot of chores to do. As usual, I probably will put off many clean-up jobs until next spring. Did I mention that I am a lazy gardener?

I like to leave some plants up for winter interest: Autumn Joy sedum, garlic chives, echinacea, Goldsturm blackeyed susans, various grasses, and even the tall garden asters. The birds have a great time picking at them during the winter months and they look so pretty with the snow covering them.

This is the first year since I have live in this house that I haven't planted any bulbs. I thought that I would feel lost, but I don't even really feel a desire to plant them. What is wrong with me? I have this feeling that I will have an overwhelming urge to plant a couple hundred at the end of October- like when all the stores try to get rid of the bulbs they have left and I just can't pass up such fantastic deals!! Then I'll be out there in the cold scrambling to get them in the ground. I'm sure some of you know what I am talking about.

I bought some isulated covers for a few plants: my two rose bushes (this time, I will NOT kill them!!), the Plum Crazy hibiscus, and the experimental Astilboides tabularis. I have been debating covering my rhododendron since it is the first year and I have had bad luck keeping them alive. Any of you cold-weather gardeners have any suggestions?

Monday, October 10, 2005

The Glory of Bagging Mowers

This spring I got a new mower since SSB insisted that the old one was broke. I didn't argue too much since I had been dying to get a bagging mower to replace that mulching piece of...Well, let's just say that I really don't like having to clean up after a mower!

This picture shows exactly why I was so hot to get a bagger- the green, grassy area used to be just as leaf covered as the other areas, until I mowed that is! NO MORE RAKING!!! I thought that it couldn't get any better than just not having to rake up the grass after mowing, but the added bonus of no leaf raking has me forever sold on bagging mowers!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Beware the Gift of Fruit!

I had a friend over in July for a sewing get-together. We had snacks of chevre and Triscuits as well as some apples and caramel. She had brought, as her contribution to the goodies, a couple of pears. We ate one, and I kept the other in the fruit bowl to use up later.

Well, it wasn't two days later my house became infested with fruit flies! There were dozens of them flying by the kitchen sink, in the bathroom, and attacking my other fruit. I threw the pear away and proceeded to kill every one of the little buggers that I could.

Fruit flies are so tiny that the very act of trying to swat them blows them out of reach of your weapon of choice. I'm pretty accurate at clapping them to death, and I can even manage a good one-handed catch-n-squash every now and then. But it is now October, and I am STILL battling an army of them!

My dogs think that I'm trying to correct them for naughty things as I clap away, yelling and cussing. They are very concerned and nervous. As I'm typing this in the living room, I have had at least three of them fly right up to my face. This is ridiculous!

Help! I promise to never keep gift fruit again, but what can I do to get rid of these pesky little bastards?

Monday, October 03, 2005

Fabulous Freaks

This echinacea started itself this year. I almost pulled it up because it was in a place that I didn't want it and I had so many other echinacea already growing. Once again, something stopped me. I am glad that I left it because I almost bought an echinachea that had this horizontal petal feature, and now I don't have to! The flowers keep their petals horizontal to the very end too. It is even better than the ones that I almost bought since the flowers are over twice the size of normal echinachea as well. They are HUGE!