Friday, January 2, 2015

Wide Shots - January 2015

The monthly wide shot meme was launched by Heather of Xericstyle in 2013 and I have joined in with photos from my garden since September of that year.  This month I thought I'd change things up a little and focus on two areas of my garden: my "new" front yard and an area I call the "glen," which I don't often show.

As anyone who has read my posts over the last few months knows, the front garden has undergone a major change.  We removed roughly 800 square feet of lawn surrounding our central walkway this fall and, after lots of work preparing the area, I began planting it in late November.  It's still a work in progress but it's coming along.

Usual view of the front of the house from the driveway

The area to the left (north side) of the front door walkway

The larger area to the right (south side) of the front door walkway

View of the same area, photographed from the south side garden


Although the front garden is far from finished, I've begun thinking about my next project, one that was originally on my mental list to tackle in 2014 but which dropped to the wayside when efforts shifted to the front garden and the street-side succulent bed last year.  I want to make the area I call the "glen" (for little reason other than I need to call it something) more usable.  The area sits inside a hedge (or what used to be a hedge) along the street on the southwest side of our property.  It's accessible by two separate dirt paths.  One path slopes down from the arbor in the south side garden and the other runs behind the Xylosma hedge on south side of the driveway entrance.  I've fiddled with the area off and on since we moved in but, since I mutilated the Pittosporum hedge that formerly hid it from view and planted a succulent bed along the street in front, I think I need to do more to transform the area, starting with building an extension to the existing dry-stacked wall.

This photo shows the path into the area from the upper level

The path leads toward the street, disappearing behind the Xylosma hedge that formerly connected to the Pittosporum hedge

For unknown reasons, the low dry stacked wall holding back the slope ends halfway through the space (roughly in the middle of this photo).  I added some rocks and rubble collected on-site to extend the wall our first year here but that isn't doing the job.

I've added succulent cuttings above the wall and, more recently, planted a small succulent cutting bed  at ground level (partially visible here in the right foreground)


I'll close with collages showing the seasonal progression of other areas of the garden I usually include in my wide shot posts.
Counterclockwise from the top left: The back garden in April, July, and October 2014 and, top right, in January 2015


Counterclockwise from top left: The southeast side garden in April, July, and October 2014 and, top right, in January 2015

Counterclockwise from top left: The dry garden in April, July, and October 2014 and, top right, in January 2015

Counterclockwise from top left: The back slope in April, July, and November 2014 and, top right, in January 2015


The first project of the year will be to address that hideous stump at the bottom of the slope.  The tree service that cut the Yucca elephantipes down to its current height of 4+ feet will be back in mid-January to try cutting it closer to flush with the surface of the soil.  We'll then do our best to expedite the stump's decay and construct a living or man-made screen to create privacy between us and our neighbors on the other side of the stump.  There's always something that needs doing in a garden.


All material © 2012-2015 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

24 comments:

  1. Your garden is ever so lush now Kris. You can really tell in the collage images.
    I can't believe it's that time of the month already - I got a bit of a jolt when I saw your post in my sidebar.
    Good luck with the forthcoming projects - I will watch with interest and envy!

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    1. After seeing your last post, Angie, I believe you have nothing whatsoever to envy!

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  2. It's always nice to see long shots of your garden Kris and seeing how they develop, as well as hearing your plans. Extra interested in what privacy solution you'll come up with now the Yucca is gone.

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    1. A lot will depend on how low the tree service can cut that Yucca stump - it they can really get it flush to the ground, maybe we can put groundcovers over it. I'd like to add one or more trees too (I've always wanted a Jacaranda!) but I'll need to work with the neighbor to select something she can also live with.

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  3. Dear Kris, I always love your wide shots posts! I am looking forward to seeing how you will develop your 'new front yard' and the 'glen' area in your garden. I personally think your front yard is wonderful as it is right now, the plants just have to grow in a bit more, so I am curious what needs of tweaking you are perceiving. The 'glen' on the other hand, well, I would consider that a challenge, but I am sure you are up to it :-)! Can't wait for the update next month, already.
    Just want to let you know that I answered to your comment on my blog with the question about a peach/apricot rose. I would wish that I could have been more helpful, but who knows maybe you like my recommendations. Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. The glen is indeed a challenge - shady much of the day with a short but fairly sharp slope above it. I hope to break up the slope and hold the soil with 2 tiers of rocks and I need to do something to screen the area from the street, preferably without eliminating too much of the light.

      Thanks for the recommendations on a rose. I'm on the hunt!

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  4. Your wide shots always make my jaw drop! You've done so much to your garden and it's incredibly beautiful. I love the glen space as it seems so private in your picture. I'm seeing a sea of succulents with a few agaves for punctuation.

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    1. It was private - until I mutilated that Pittosporum hedge. I think some or all of the remaining Pittosporum needs to come out, to be replaced with some other screening material. Decisions, decisions!

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  5. The wide shots are lovely! The front area is looking so restful now that the planting is done. It's amazing to see how lush and lively everything is despite the terrible drought you guys have had, Matt

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    1. The December rains were timed perfectly to help settle the new plantings in the front area but, unfortunately, they seem to have come to a halt with no new rainstorms in the forecast. The irrigation system is back on - if we didn't have that, you'd see only cactus Matt.

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  6. I love the series of shots from each season for the various areas you feature routinely. It is absolutely fascinating and has me vowing to do the same here over the year to come. There is also one shot along a back path that reveals a lovely butterfly chair. What a lovely spot to sit and appreciate close up some of the fruits of your labors.

    Those dry stack walls are great as well - we have a few here that I really appreciate as backdrops and for their utility as well. Will you extend yours personally or do you have a mason you use?

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    1. Too bad I almost never sit down to just enjoy the garden Deb! I did more of that when I used to take Ming, my ill cat, for a walk - he needed to frequent rest breaks so I got to sit too. Pipig, my remaining cat, isn't that accommodating (and I only let her out for very short periods under careful watch anyway).

      I think we'll try to add on to the dry stack walls ourselves, following the pattern set my whomever laid the original section. I hate to think what it would cost to bring a mason in - as I'd like natural stone to match the original, the cost is already a concern.

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  7. I love seeing how your garden progresses, Kris! Happy second blogger anniversary to you! To help you celebrate, I just nominated your blog for a Liebster award. If you accept, just answer the questions on my latest post, and go from there! Cheers!

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    1. Anna! What a surprise! I was taken aback when I saw your message this afternoon. I accept and hope to have the answers to your questions up in a post tomorrow. Thank you!

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  8. I love your wide shots, you have achieved so much this year. It is all looking wonderful.

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    1. Thanks Chloris. I'm looking for a way to change up my monthly wide shots, maybe by doing more comparisons of the type I made this month. I've been afraid the posts may be getting too repetitive. They're useful from a record keeping perspective, however.

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  9. I remember being confused by glimpses of the glen in the past - thanks for explaining that area in more detail. Your garden is looking fabulous Kris, so amazing to think of all the work you've done - especially in the middle of a drought.

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    1. It's a hard area to describe due to the abrupt level change on that end of the property. It's also a difficult area to photograph as there are deep shadows covering one or another portion of the area all day. The neighbor cut back the tree-high oleander along his driveway, which lightened the area up a bit, which made photo-taking a little easier.

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  10. There is not much difference between the different monthly images, as fine all the time.
    There is little difference with us.
    Now it's zero degrees here but last week it was -17 degrees.
    Have a good day
    Mariana

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    1. That is incredibly cold Mariana! Having spent my entire life in Southern California, I cannot even conceive of temperatures like that.

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  11. I LOVE your wide shots! They really give me a perspective of your overall garden, not to mention your wonderful views. I can imagine walking out into your garden each day fills you with joy and excitement. It would me! There are always new projects, new plants, new creative urges. Happy New Year, and congratulations on two years in the blogosphere!

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    1. Thanks Deb! Actually, rather than the view, I usually have my eyes to the ground each morning looking for evidence as to whether the raccoons or the skunks have paid me a nighttime visit. Maybe I should start my day by looking up and out instead of down!

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  12. You have done an amazing job in the expansion of your garden. It looks beautiful. You have a real flair for design.

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    1. Thanks sweetbay! It's still a work in progress - but then it probably always will be.

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