Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Clean Slate

Last Friday was our workday on the property.  Here is an update on what we've done around the place.

With a pic and an ax, all the stumps were removed from the planters saving us a lot of time in Spring. One of the hardest things about these projects is clearing out older established plants and starting over from a clean slate.  However, it actually looks really nice and open now for me to paint my magic.  Ten stumps were removed and the planters are now ready to be dug out.   In March, when the danger of Jack Frost has left the area, I will begin the renovation of the gardens.  Working from a clean slate allows you, the gardener, to work objectively.  I made a mistake 2 years ago by not taking all the plants out when I had the planters removed along my side of the building.  I kept a ficus tree because I didn't want to take it out.  Today it's an eyesore and something I'll have to remove next year.  My bamboo forest took over most of the area and looks lovely, but this eyesore still reminds me to remove everything from an area and start over. It's harder than you think. Live and learn:)
Every year, I have this California Palm trimmed.  It grows about 2 feet and it will soon quickly rise above the roof away from the resident's window.  I love this plant skinned and raised.  If you like a nice thick trunky palm in the desert, I recommend this variety.

Check out the massive amounts of fronds!!!

Of course, we can't forget about the pool which froze over.  As we emptied the water out, the ice shattered with an earth cracking sound.  This was the day after our freeze.

While this has been the most costly of projects at over a thousand dollars, it has been worthwhile.  In Spring, the area will be ready for a makeover that will change the feel of the Eastern garden.  No longer will residents have to look at ratty bushes or trees.  I can't change the garden overnight, but I am working on different projects based on yearly phases.  This one was one of the biggies and I hope the residents get a feel for what they are going to see around their homes.
Winter here has been devastating. A lot of plants were killed and are still dying.  I have a post called Plan B coming up that will discuss emergency issues when it comes to a lot of plants around a complex dying. There are ways to deal with this and I look at it as the "emergency fund".  I think it's a great post on being smart and savvy in the garden with a back up plan. You hopefully have a saving's plan, so why not have one for your garden? So much more coming up...... Las Aventuras is just gearing up for a fun year in 2011.

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