First, I brought out all my plants into the sunshine and checked everything that I had already planted.
Next, I went to work in the front. Jamie is anxious to get the mulch down, but I wanted to prune all the azalea bushes, hollies, and Japanese barberry bushes first. I pruned them as far back as I could. Every year we mulch first, but then after I prune the bushes, I feel like I'm scooping up all the mulch when I pick up the branches.
I also did a lot of weeding up front. I still need to fertilize all the bushes up front, but I can do this after the mulch is laid. The front is now ready for mulch.
The front took most of the day, but after I fertilize and mulch, I won't have to think about it again until next year. And it looks so pretty! Michael finished painting the rose trellises, so I'll put those in place tomorrow or Wednesday. And I planted the Snowball marigolds that I grew by the Midnight salvia and roses. It should look lovely when they bloom (although I think the salvia will be spent).
Then I worked a little bit on the perennial garden. I planted the Baptisia plant I bought at the plant sale, as well as the two Rose Campion plants. I weeded a little bit and cut some dead canes off the climbing rose, and had to prune back a butterfly bush the a deer pushed over. Grrrr.
I planted all of my French marigolds, too - some at the edge of the perennial garden, some along the edge of my bean garden, and the rest along the edge of my vegetable garden.
Actually, before I planted the marigolds, I started to rake and shovel the vegetable garden. It was impossible! It was all hard and lumpy, and now I feel really bad that I put my seedlings into such unprepared soil!
When I realized that it would take me all day to prepare the soil, and that I already had an aching back, I worked up the courage to pull the rototiller out. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to start it up, since I'm not really good with machinery. Well, it started up (after a prayer!). In no time, the vegetable garden, James' pumpkin patch and my bean garden were in perfect condition for planting!
So, moving right along! Tomorrow, I plan on putting in the rest of my seedlings, all of my seeds, and my dahlias. I plan on setting up some fences and the rose trellises, doing some fertilizing and setting out some mulch. Another busy day!
A couple of concerns. The deer and rabbits. And the fact that a few of the plants are struggling (see plant on left. Yikes!).