Wednesday, July 11, 2007

More attempts at gardening

Sunday night I attempted some more gardening. I was inspired by Susan's comment that the gardening shop Molbak's over on the Dark Side (East of Lake Washington) is the biggest and the best so we went over there in the afternoon to shop around.
Unfortunately I learned that bigger is not always better - I was overwhelmed by their selection and didn't get much help from the staff (I think they would be more helpful if I had a specific question rather than "I need some pretty flowers"). I ended up buying some impatiens, which my Studly Hubby potted in a big pot to put in the backyard, and then I bought three things for the very sunny south-facing front yard:

Trailing Verbena hybrid (in Aztec pink)

Lantana hybrid (Patriot Firewagon)

and two kinds of Sedum: Sedum spathulifolium, which I'm pretty sure I had in my old lab (the one Uncle KT smashed all over the floor in a frothing mad rage one day), and Sedum ogori. I took pictures, but it was just before sunset (at 9:30 pm, sunset is getting earlier...!) so everything is getting dark.

The staff "helped" me by trying to get me to buy a $50 hardcover gardening book which they said didn't even have good pictures. Despite this hurdle, I managed to get some good stuff. Instead of buying the book I carried it around with me at the store and looked up everything that looked pretty until I found a few that were just right - hardy, likes sun, blooms all summer. Yay! I also bought a trowel and some gloves, and when I got home I planted them and watered them and three days later they are still alive. Yay!

At my book club tonight I was informed that it is not too late to plant veggies in Seattle, so that is my next plan. I'm going to buy some interesting seeds, clear out more of the garden, and throw the seeds in a hole and see what happens. My Studly Hubby also nabbed a free package of wildflowers from work and it is a mystery what that will grow so I'm going to put that somewhere too. This gardening thing is pretty fun, especially when things bloom and grow.


tom said...

I'm glad to hear it. I think my comment to you got under your skin. I actually liked that 'secret garden' area but also saw its potential the minute I got there. I think you'll have a good time! Good luck!

Eric said...

This is what my books say for your area.... I probably have the hardcover book your talking about but mine is soft bound.

It says your in trouble for warm season things, but with global warming you never know, you could get a few extra or a few less weeks. Things you could try though your just out of the range.: Beans, Cucumbers(I bet you can do these if you get some short season ones(labeled early)), Summer Squash.

Cool season Vegies: Beets(this is the perfect time for fall plantings), Cabbage, Kohlrabi, Lettuce. Peas, Potatoes, Radishes,

In august: Broccoli, Brussels sprouts(for harvest next year), Cauliflower, Spinach.

My guess is you will be more successful with cool season veggies, in the mild cool climates of Seattle. Without a scorching summer heat tomato's and peppers and corn have a hard time.

I would go to a local gardening shop, with a lot of veggie seeds and ask for a vegetable planting chart/calendar.

The interesting thing about gardening is that because of microclimates, it's always hard to guess what will or won't grow, in your specific yard.... Which leads to the fun experimentation.

Don't be afraid to fail....

I think your lawn may need a periodic watering though....

tom said...

i like the idea of wildflowers. your post inspired me to write one and then also notice that little patches of wildflowers were growing all over town...people are into them here, all of a sudden. but, just as was writing my post, as it turns out, i found out that lady bird johnson died. you might not know her, but she was wife of lyndon johnson, president around the time of nixon. she once told him she was sick of all the billboards in texas and that they should put wildflowers all along the roadsides. the heck of it is, they did. bluebonnets especially. texas- the state that it takes days to drive through (well i guess it takes days to drive through l.a. too) - anyway those days are a bit nicer with the kind of muted bluebonnet colors.

anyway good luck with whatever you plant- as w.c. fields said, "rutabaga, pomagranate, calabashes!"

J-Funk said...

Dad - I like your post! I could picture all those wildflowers. I think I'll plant ours right away and maybe some more.

Eric - Thank you so much! I now have a better idea of what veggies to try. I had never thought of microenvironments but that's a good point. Now if I have trouble with something I can blame it on the microenvironment. Thanks!

susan said...

The Dark Side? Huh!

I'm sorry you got a bum helper...usually they are very helpful.

The best part about Molbak's is that they have a one year guarantee on everything. Well maybe not the annuals or do I have that backwards??

Carol said...

Hello from a fellow Seattle-ite -- and resident of "Molbacktown" on the Dark Side. ;-)