My most significant new venture involved the addition of 500 pounds (227 kilograms) of rock to my street-side succulent bed.
|Most of the new rock was added through the mid-section of the bed in an irregular pattern|
I used the rock to give the succulent bed more interest; to allow me to raise the soil level in sections, improving drainage; and to help hide the drip irrigation hose. I dug up and rearranged some succulents in the process.
|A closer look at selected segments of the bed|
I've debated using gravel mulch around the succulents. Heat already reflects off the street and I'm concerned that rock gravel may increase the reflected heat and also raise soil temperatures. In addition, after digging mountains of rocks out of my garden, I'm hesitant to add rock that will gradually sift down into the soil below. In the short term, I'm planning to add an organic mulch and rely more on groundcover succulents to fill in between plants.
The only areas of my garden getting virtually no attention are the back slope and the area I call the glen, which sits behind the street-side succulent bed. The slope isn't getting the water it needs and it looks awful. As to the glen, my husband and I have plans to haul in stone to extend the half-finished dry-stack wall but that project may be on hold until cooler weather returns.
The back garden still has some holes but it's looking fuller than it did earlier in the year.
|The clumps of Mexican feather grass (Stipa tenuissima) in the fountain bed got bad haircuts in June but the daylilies are at their peak|
|The grass path between the borders is gradually dying and is slated for removal in late September|
|The mimosa tree (Albizia julibrissin) is the star of the backyard garden right now, although its litter is already dropping everywhere|
The raccoons have returned to plague the side garden, no longer put off by the prickly magnolia flower cones I put down to thwart their digging.
|I spend time most mornings filling in the holes dug by the raccoons and skunks and replacing the plants they uprooted overnight|
|The Grevillea 'Bonfire' in the bed in the background on the right is dying, probably because I haven't given it enough water to get established in the dry soil in that area|
|This photo was taken as a tropical system passed through late Tuesday afternoon, producing thunder and lightening but just a few droplets of rain|
The front garden also still has some bare spots, although the area on the south side is filling in rapidly.
|The Magnolia is continuing to bloom and the Albizia can be seen poking above the roofline - the tropical weather conditions even prompted the Hong Kong orchid tree (Bauhinia x blakeana, on the left) to produce some flowers on mostly bare branches|
|The Agapanthus are fading throughout the garden - although you can still see some here and in the back garden, I cut down more than 120 scruffy stalks earlier this week|
|It's hard to believe this area was bare dirt just 9 months ago!|
The lawn in this area, behind the hedge bordering the street and the driveway, is slated for removal in late September, along with the remaining lawn in the backyard. We're planning to lay flagstone paths through both areas, surrounded by low groundcovers. In the meantime, we're making no effort to keep the grass alive.
|The green patches here are some kind of weed with tiny yellow flowers|
The dry garden is looking pretty good, although the critters have pilfered about half the grapes and persimmons are dropping unripened from the tree, probably also due to inadequate water.
|The guava trees also seem to be slow to set fruit this year|
The raised planters in the vegetable garden are filled with sunflower seedlings and dozen zinnia plants.
|I was late in getting the sunflower seeds planted and the raccoons have dug around in the raised planters too but I'm still hopeful I'll get a few sunflowers before summer's over|
That's it for this month's wide shots and monthly recap. Hopefully, summer will be kind to us and I'll have more than dried up plant husks to show in August.
All material © 2012-2015 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party