From the monthly archives:

September 2010

A Love Affair Comes to an End

by Lorraine on September 12, 2010

It occurred to me that having a garden (and that’s any kind of garden), is a bit like being in a love affair as it unfolds and embraces you in a relationship that you have no idea where is going to go or if it will end or continue blissfully into the infinite future!

I don’t think that when a person decides to start a garden, that they are thinking of the consequences of that decision and what will be expected of them from their plants.  They have to be looked after, maybe babied and sometimes need a little more attention that you thought you would have to give when you started your project.

My garden is 100% native plants and when I started it almost three years ago, I didn’t know too much about  native plants and  I relied on books and some advice as to what my plant selection could be.   I poured through the books, loved many plants that I saw and envisioned them in my garden.

However, you have to be realistic, not all of them are appropriate for your space and falling in love with some of them can be a bad decision.   Then you are forced to recognize that the relationship just isn’t working anymore and you’re loath to do anything about it , because you still “care”.

After much consideration, hand-wringing and how I can best initiate the breakup without too much pain, I’ve decided to remove the Canyon Prince Rye Grasses.   I still love them… a lot but you know?

It’s just not working for me anymore and it’s time to move on to the next chapter in my relationship with my garden.   I severely cut two of them back today….and yes.   And in about two months, the rest of them will get cut to the ground, too.

And then I will attempt to transplant them to my backyard but I’m not holding my breath on this.   They will probably be so shocked by the breakup, that they may die of broken hearts.


Canyon Prince Wild Rye

by Lorraine on September 7, 2010

Lolo, this sounds like it’s going to be a hot and racy post about some sort of Prince named “Canyon” but that’s hardly the case.  Actually its about a native plant or grass, whatever you want to call it, that I have in my garden.

I fell in love with it’s appearance the first time I saw it, plus it’s beautiful blue-gray color.   It’s a very architectural plant, stately and adds visual interest to a garden.   But, oh my goodness, I was clueless about how large they could grow.

My garden will be three years old in December ( I’m shocked at how quickly the time flew, really?) and during that time, these plants were relatively small but this year they took off.   Check out these pictures and you can see what I am talking about.   They have grown to be about 5 and half feet tall and probably about 7 feet wide.

Yes, they are gorgeous but they are taking over my garden and I will need to remove them this winter.   I hate doing it but it’s necessary.   And get this!  I will have to dig up six of them and attempt to transplant them to the backyard along a wall.

I do have some concerns about their potential to create more rhizomes that produce larger colonies of the grass & if I’m too late at this point to prevent them from spreading.

There are three of them in this picture & they are smothering a Woolly Blue Curl and shouldering out a Whirly Blue Sage.

My plan is that within about a month, I will cut them down to about a foot above the ground, soak them and go at it.   I’m wondering how large the root balls will be on the buggers and naturally I’m wondering how successful I will be at relocating them.

This will require ample preparation on my part, plenty of water, snacks, gloves, sunscreen and whatever paraphernalia I will need to accomplish my mission.   I had also better get a good night’s sleep the night before.

I already dug up one earlier this year and so far it’s managed to make it through the summer but I’m not so confident about the ones that still need to be moved.

Once they’re out of the garden, I will need to decide on what other plant I will replace them with.   I really love the color and would like to still have that in my garden but whatever it is, it can’t be too big.

So, so much for “Princes”….lolo, these are the only ones in my life and I’m breaking up with them.