Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Deer Bed Update

I went out to check on my deer bed. Remember, these perennials were half dead and anything I got would've been gravy considering what they've been thru.
The first thing that I noticed was the entire bed is full of weeds. Weed seeds from thousands of years waited for us to rototill and expose them to the sunlight, so they might germinate and make me angry. I got out the hoe, of all things, and scraped and chopped. I am hoping it will be enough. I need to get some mulch out there.
I yanked 2 red twigged dogwoods out of the mixed border. They are not good neighbors and were shading everything out. I also discovered the ground squirrels have eaten away at my peonies. Sick, sick, sick.
After hoeing for an hour and a half, my right arm fell off so I took a break and got my camera. These perennials are so grateful to be in the ground, they decided to flower!
Autumn Joy, almost in flower!

Purple Rain Salvia

Vera Jamieson Sedum seems especially happy here in deer land. 
I did see deer tracks. I couldn't tell if they'd eaten anything, though.

I see bloggers' zinnias and I love them! My girlfriend, RoseM has fabulous tall ones that are lush and colorful. This is an anemic variety, Purple Prince. 
I am just not feeling this guy. I made the decision to grow it because it is an heirloom, so I thought it would be a big showy one. I will keep trying with zinnias. I just see so many pretty ones. 
I ordered pansy seed from Jung's. I stuck them in the fridge and will throw them on the ground and see what happens!
I also ordered 'Double Click Cranberry' Cosmos. It sounds good enough to eat!
Jung's says "amazing flower production". Maybe they mean for me, too!
RoseM has a bed with Cosmic Yellow cosmos with tall verbena and I fell in love with it. 
I think I would like to add a cutting border. I don't want to work too hard on this, I will just scalp the lawn in late October in a long narrow path. As the first snow flies, I will throw some poppy seeds, larkspur and tall cornflower. In the spring, I will throw Cut and Come Again Zinnias, the Cosmic Cosmos, the Cranberry Double Click, and the verbena. The combination sounds awesome to me. We'll have to see how sowing in situ goes for me. 

They look all the world like cippolini onions, but they are tomatillos. I roasted them with some garlic today, ready to make salsa verde. 
I cannot tell you how fabulous the house smells right now....



  1. Weeds do cause aggravation and lots of hard work that is for sure.

    You've got some sweet flowers blooming.

    I've never had tomatillos before.

    Have a great week ~ FlowerLady

  2. You have been one very busy lady. Atleast some of the new things are blooming. That's saying lot considering the condition they were in.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  3. The struggles of a new garden are so dire. But in another year, maybe in two, your space will wow you! I grow Cut and Come Again zinnias every year and they are reliable and get big and beautiful (not dinner plate blooms,very refined pom poms, but robust plants in the happiest colors).

    Those tomatillos look delicious. Had them for the first time ever at Missouri Botanical Garden cafe. I could grow them I think. Yours do look like onions!

  4. You seem to have been real busy.
    I wish I could smell the roasting tomatillos---must be awesome!!

  5. Sissy-the first year is always the worst with a new bed. You'll be happy with it soon enough.
    I didn't grow zinnias this year and sure do miss them. Hope you find ones that you like. Last year I had some gorgeous ones-I'll have to look up where I got them from and let you know.
    Have a good week. And hope you kept track of where you lost your right arm--you might need it sometime!

  6. If you ever feel you need to weed come here to my 1/3 acre wildweed (flower) field. I have to go out and cut a bunch of stuff by hand so it doesn't seed when mowed. LIke sticking your finger in a dike to hold back the water!

    Love zinnias! Wish they would reseed better.

  7. Sissy, I think you will find that the deer don't eat the Sedum AJ. I have dozens of them and no animal has ever eaten them.

    Your cutting garden sounds like a winner. I love the idea of just tossing seeds and seeing what happens.

  8. Oh Sissy, I feel for you! I have hoed weeds till I thought my arm had fallen off, too. It seems like whenever I start a new bed, I have to fight grassy weeds for a few years until I can finally get them under control. Your new plants look pretty perky; they must be happy in their new home. As for the zinnias, I have a few anemic looking ones, too, but I usually buy or order the tall ones with the giant blooms, and I've been happy with them so far.

  9. Dear Sissy,
    I have to say that reading your blog is pure entertainment for me...this cracked me up...."After hoeing for an hour and a half, my right arm fell off". We grow sedum for a living. Even writing that still shocks me (year three). I weed until my arms fall off. Then I have to make dinner. (-:
    Your garden should be beautiful next year...how does the saying go, the first year they sleep, the next year they creep, the 3rd year they leap!


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