Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

what to do? what to do?

I'm having a hard time deciding what to do with all the bulbs I planted.

When in bloom they are beautiful to look at, but the Ixias are so tall and spindly, the stems don't stay upright under the weight of the blooms, I have them tied to the windmill with a piece of cloth tape.

The freesias and bluebells are completely flattened, with squashed blooms, by the cats that lie on them, or by people tramping over the patch to pick a bit of this or that. 
One of the larger jades was broken right through the middle. I dug up the broken section and replanted it at the other end of the garden.

The ranunculus are lovely, but only one colour seems to have survived. I could buy more, but where would I put them? Maybe in a pot and dig up the originals and put them in a pot also, but the space I had for bulbs pots in the beginning, is now taken up with different plants in pots.

There are still some freesias in pots, but they too are flattened and not blooming at all, the daffodils I had in the front corner were once again stripped of buds before they bloomed, so I've dug them up and distributed the bulbs in other pots with cuttings that I hope will grow. 
Anemones? A fair bit of greenery appeared, but only three blooms which didn't last long. 

The croton stems are probably going to die, they were half dead when I bought them at the supermarket for 1/3 the original price. I'll put them back in pots and feed them Seasol, maybe they'll come good.

The herbs I had in pots aren't doing so well either, the mint is lovely for now, but the sage is dying and the oregano is hidden by whatever bulb greenery is also in the pot. I was sure I'd gotten all the bulbs out of there, or maybe the oregano died and then I planted bulbs and now they are fighting for space....

Most of the succulents are surviving, but not thriving, maybe I could put some of those back in pots and fill the porch steps, since I also have a path and don't need to use the steps to get to the front porch. 

I think the one big problem is that garden bed is so full of tree roots from the plum trees, and any time I dig in there, the roots are disturbed and send up lots of new shoots that I don't want. 

It gets a lot of north and west exposure, so summers are very hot and dry there, keeping up the water is costly and time consuming, which is why I tried the succulents. 

Too many of the plants I tried, failed, which is disheartening. I simply don't know what to do next. 
Perhaps I should have just left the ugly, prickly grasses and sat inside reading books instead?




18 comments:

  1. I have no idea; I have a black thumb!!

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    1. fishducky; I don't think my green thumb has died, but I do think my garden bed just isn't suitable for most things that I like.

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  2. I couldn't tell you, you saw how most of my plants went this year. Sorry ...

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    1. S.J.Qualls; perhaps you're in the same boat as me, choosing and planting the wrong things?

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  3. I am so sorry. Bulbs don't do well in pots for more than one season. Perhaps if you have a look at gardens close by? If you find one that is thriving, check out what is in it. The bulb leaves do look messy after the blooms have gone. I put up with it, but they are not attractive.

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    1. Elephant's Child; most of the gardens near me have things in pots, or they're better situated weatherwise, and without competition from tree roots. I can put up with messy leaves after the blooms, but flattened by cats with few or no blooms is unacceptable. The ixias were mostly enclosed by the windmill frame so the cats couldn't get to them, but I had to tie them up to have them upright. I photograph the good bits for the Sunday selections, but really it's just quite messy. I've never had such a small space before either.
      A neighbour who moved in less than a year ago has a unit facing east, so no afternoon heat in summer and he now has a gazillion pots with gorgeous petunias, pansies, and other flowering colourful things. I'm green with envy.

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  4. I'm afraid I'm not much of a gardner. Maybe one of those dry riverbed thingies and some cactus?

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    1. No cactus! I took out the prickly grasses because i worried some of the elderly with their walkers might stumble and get badly scratched.
      I'll keep thinking.

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  5. This is awful, and I have no advice, except find some ground cover that will give the roots something to think about. I built the old garden by seeing what other people had, plus the extreme fortune of facing south. Now I have western exposure. I don't know what will happen. Some of what I transplanted was done for the season, like cone flowers and fox glove, so we'll see. Others, like the milkweed, and the balloon flowers seem intent on taking over. More power to them. I planted more wooly thyme for ground cover, and that has spread a bit in three months.Can you find a ground cover that can defy the roots, and start from there?

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    1. Joanne; I was hoping some of the succulents would spread and cover some ground, but that doesn't seem to be happening. Some of the echeveria might spread, but I don't want just one plot of nothing but hen-and-chickens, with the jades across the front. The jades are doing well still, in spite of one getting broken.

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  6. I have no concrete suggestions...on second thoughts, perhaps concrete is the way to go!

    Just kidding around...EC's suggestion is a good one...check around everywhere with those in similar positions etc. as to you...or do some in-depth research via computer. Some kind of hardy ground cover would help keep the moisture on, too.

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    1. Lee; concrete would kill the trees too and I quite enjoy the half dozen plums I get before the birds move in on them. I thought I was getting hardy ground cover with the succulents, but that doesn't seem to be the case.
      I still have the jades doing well and a couple of the kangaroo paws too. The coprosmas were supposed to be a meter and a half tall by now,and quite wide but they seem to be stuck at 50cm. They were to be a barrier, a fence, between my plot and the next which is still grasses.

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  7. I keep all my bulbs in pots as I lose them in my garden but not had a lot of success with them.
    Merle........

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    1. Merle; EC has mentioned bulbs don't do well in pots after the first year, that's why I put mine in the garden. Where the cats love to lie on the cool green leaves and flatten them (*~*)

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  8. Pots are the way to go, but it is a costly way to have a garden, but if in ground plants are not successful, what is the point. It must be quite disheartening for you.

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    1. Andrew; it is disheartening, and costly too having to buy pots, but I can get nice ones sometimes at Cheap as Chips, so I'll start with the idea of putting the succulents back in pots, one at a time, maybe move them all to the front, hottest corner and then re-plan.

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  9. Sadly I have to give up the garden soon or reduce it to the minimum.

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  10. Gardening can be so very frustrating. I don't know enough about your area to give advice but I often struggle with plants seasonally because of weather or conditions that work against me. Some years such as this year my succulents have thrived and spread while other years they died back and struggled.

    A lot of my plants got too tall and collapsed under the weight of the flowers this year. We had a lot of rain in the spring which caused the extreme growth. My irises were considerably taller this year than usual.

    I tend to have good years and bad years as far as my gardens go.

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