Thursday, November 4, 2010

Planting new things

Almost two weeks ago Allie and I planted my garden.  I still don't know what half of the plants are called.

I met Allie at the gardening center near her house where we stocked up on animal fertilizer, soil improver (which really looked just like good-quality soil), spray stuff to keep in moisture, and mulch.  So many steps to just make the soil habitable here.  Then we went to Allie's house and I got a lot of cuttings from various plants in her garden.

Side note: Gardens here aren't like most gardens I've encountered in the mid-west.  Growing up my dad's garden always seemed to be specifically designed.  There were a lot of plants, and they were in multiple places, but it always seemed to be ruled by order, not chaos.  Here English Cottage gardens seem to be the norm, with people planting a WIDE variety of things, and seeing what happens.  Then, after a decade or so, you have a garden that is absolutely breathtaking, but entirely random.

Mentally, I planned my garden to contain just a few species of plants, as it is really small, and I wanted it to be low-maintenance and easy for the next tenants to take it over.  The only thing I really knew was that I wanted Impatiens.  When I arrived at Allie's house, and she started taking me around her garden, my mental plan went right out the window.  She offered about twenty different species, hardly any of which fit into my "plan".  It was entirely overwhelming.  In the end I took almost everything offered, and we dug up parts of plants that Allie's garden was sure not to miss, put them in pots with some dirt, and hauled them back to my house.

That was all before lunch.

After a break, we prepared the soil as best as possible to receive the new plants, and got to planting.  It's now, I'd say, a combination of my original plan and chaos.  I was able to pick up some Impatiens, so those are scattered throughout, as well as a couple different kinds of Daises, Geraniums, long leafy things that look very similar to the ones I pulled out of my garden in the first place, and several other types that I do not recall the names of.  But let me just show you pictures.

It still looks a little sparse, but hopefully in the next few weeks things will get over the shock of being transplanted, and start to grow.  I had some extra Impatiens so we planted them around my little tree and in the spare planter where I dumped all the potting soil from my failed Impatiens experiment.

I could never have done this much work in one day on my own.  As it was we worked for about nine hours.  I hope things will take to my soil, Allie warned that some of them may not, and I've never been responsible for a garden before, much less one in less than ideal soil.  Though the process was overwhelming, I'm so glad I had Allie's help.  And in the end I only bought the Impatiens, (plus the fertilizer and stuff) and those cost less than $10.  Definitely worth it.

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