The Knitting Nurse

Rambles and Travels

Welcome to My Garden-The Front yard

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Last summer I posted gardening pics, at my rental home, sharing the process from fledgling to full grown. This year, I’ve been so busy (sigh…) I missed out on sharing the fledgling pics.

A few days of much needed rain have plumped up and greened the garden.  It’s been a bone dry summer.  We skipped spring, prompting us to think about putting into place water catchment systems before the winter rains start. How I hope they do.

Anyone have any experience with this? I’m thinking beyond the rain barrel and about digging in tanks for rain water and maybe even grey water.

This is my first home. My first owned home.  And I have to share with you just how happy, giddy really, and proud I feel each time I step out into the yard. It was a blank slate, barren, lifeless upon receipt last September.  I can’t find a ‘before’ pic anywhere. Huh.

After countless wheelbarrows of moved soil (sand-capped clay, quite useless to plant in) the amendment began. We had 8 yards of compost enriched soil delivered.   Pete’s an animal. He loves to dig and move dirt around.  Without his help this would be a very slooooooow project. Creating a beautiful space together is fulfilling in many ways.

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On to the photos – starting with the front yard. A walk now leads from the sidewalk to the front steps.  Those front steps are getting an overhaul at the end of the month, becoming wider and more gracious (and safe – man are they narrow). I’ve painted the front door the closest color to the Golden Gate Bridge I can find, something I’ve dreamed of since first seeing its spans. The color is called Fireweed by Benjamin Moore. I have no idea why as it isn’t even close to fireweeds’ true color (magenta pink).  The porch ceiling I just painted sky blue.  More on that next time.  Again…another product of a repressed homeowner gathering ideas for nest-feathering over the years.

Pete made beautiful window boxes we hung under the front and side windows. They really spruce up a plain facade and are lovely to look at from the inside.

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As you can see, I have a thing for bright, primary colored plants – reds, oranges, purple and blue especially.  And nasturtiums…the more the better. I’m collecting the seeds to plant next year from several varieties.

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Three bare root fruit trees went in in Feb.  There’s a Gravenstein apple tree, a grafted multi-vatiety tree (with wee honeycrisps growing) and a Frost Peach. I unfortunately didn’t notice the deer grazing the apple trees. Temporary deer fencing now guards them.  How lovely it will be when those trees begin to mature and leaf out providing some privacy and a pretty view from the indoors.

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I’ve discovered fuschias, thanks to the help of Stephanie and Doyle at Egg and I Fuschias in Chimacum. That is a really fun place to visit, the number of varieties of fuschia (and some native plants) is staggering. Stepping into the greenhouse is like entering a magical world. Do see them if you are in this neck of the woods.  With Stephanies help, I brought home “Lena,” that’s her name…and the varieties name…to grace the front porch. She’s hardy and good for a fuschia newby such as I.

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Three varieties I have in pots, maturing, to be transplanted into the ground.

This one is called Surprise and has loads of smaller blooms.

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This one is called Army Nurse and has HUGE blooms.  She’s destined to be planted on the street side of the house.

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I’ve interspersed herbs, chard, annuals and perinnials by the front the door. I really like having all mixed up together. In true rookie style I’ve over-planted and will need to transplant eventually.

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Here’s bee balm in the brightest fuschia:

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A purple basil that smells and tastes great:

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A fiery red ecchniacea: DSCF5508

Most plants up front attract bees and butterflies, something I consider very important.

On to the back yard in the next post.

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