Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Pretty-Ugly-Pretty!

Pretty....






The first photo is a super macro(what else is new?) of a very common flower. But I think it looks so different when viewed this close. Any ideas?? It is yarrow- Apple Blossom, a pass along from Rose. When she told me it would spread easily, I had no idea just how easily and fast that meant! :) I love it though and am happy it is happy in my garden.
The 2nd photo is my new coneflower-Sunset. Isn't it gorgeous?! Sadly, it has not found a home yet and is still in it's pot. :( Surely one day soon I will decide on the perfect spot for it.
The last photo is Martha Stewart's Heritage Rose. I know I have shown this before, but it's beauty grabs me from every corner of the garden. I look up and there is that brilliant red calling to me to come take it's picture.

No, we are not to the Ugly yet, but we are getting close. If you have been reading my posts of late, you know how much I have been complaining about weeds. The fact is the weeds were taking over because we have not mulched in a few years. No amount of pulling is keeping up with their rate of growth. I talked my hubby into borrowing a grain truck and on Sat. we went to the recycling place in Urbana and got MULCH!



Hooray! The bed lifts and we don't have to shovel it off.




Wow! That looks like a lot of mulch. Actually it is 8 cu. yds. So I am thinking we will have more than enough to do what we want.

UGLY....
Warning! These next photos may make you physically ill!



This is my most neglected bed. It is out by the driveway to the garage and even though we have a little patio out there, we rarely use it now. I suppose one reason is because it is so weedy.



Another view. Oh, it's disgusting!!



Using a roll of end newsprint paper, I covered the bed after cutting down the weeds. The spots you see on the paper are sprinkles of rain that never amounted to much.



Using the roll of paper worked very well. I started at one end and rolled it out. Much easier than unfolding dozens of newspapers. :)



Pretty....




Now, doesn't that look much better? I am going to get some landscaping stones or bricks to edge it with to help hold in the mulch. And since this picture was taken, I have added a couple of containers of pink impatiens.



We also did the front beds. While they weren't weedy like the other bed, they were starting to show landscape fabric in places. And I didn't put the paper down in these beds. Even though I have blooming containers on the front steps and one on the table and another in the old birdbath, I think a couple more containers set in the mulch would look nice. This area looks pretty in the spring with tulips and daffodils in bloom, but I have little planted for summer interest.
Well, there you have it. The Pretty-Ugly-Pretty of at least part of my garden beds. Now all I have to do is the rest of the gardens. But those beds have lots of plants in them and are going to take a lot of 'hand' mulching. At least with the mulch being here, I can work on it a little at a time. Oh, and thank you hubby for all the effort and help! You are such a sweetheart to put up with my wants for the garden.
Hope your gardens are doing well and I know you don't let yours get as weedy as mine!
Happy gardening. :)

31 comments:

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Now that is a "load" of mulch Beckie. I would be intimidated by that much mulch. That Hubby of yours sure is a sweetie. I hope he survived the long sleepless haul. I can see how well the newspaper worked for you. I didn't know that a person could get it on a roll like that. Did they charge you for it??

Janet said...

How nice to be able to have end rolls of newspaper...I just use yesterday's paper. A nicely dressed bed looks so much nicer than one with weeds, we ALL can see that is our yards..I know I can. Love the macro shot of the Achillea.

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

LOL, all my beds look about that weedy given all the rain we've had. I don't have access to endroll newsprint, but it IS a great idea! I also love your new Sunset coneflower and all the mulch, of course.

Gail said...

Beckie, Clever post and clever use of rolled newspaper. Unfolding newspapers sure is more work and messy, too! The garden really looks good mulched. Your pretties are pretty, btw! I so need to do this! gail

Dee/reddirtramblings said...

It looks really wonderful and sometimes you've got to get through the ugly to let your garden shine. Great information about the newspaper roll & mulch on top. Sometimes, I think people don't know how to do that.~~Dee

Rose said...

Beckie, I am so impressed! Everything really looks beautiful. Hubby deserves a big hug for all his hard work. Had you asked me first, I would have given you all the newspapers you needed, but I can see the rolls of newsprint would have been much easier to work with.

I LOVE that new coneflower! And I'm amazed by the supermacro of the Achillia--I can never get a decent close-up of mine with just a macro.

With all the rain we're having right now, you are really going to appreciate having those beds mulched. I shudder to think what the weeds in my vegetable garden are doing right now.

Susie said...

Oh what a difference a little (or should I say alot) of mulch makes. I'm definitely a big fan of it.

Truthfully Beckie you'd be surprised at how many weeds I have. I just walk out there and think, yuck! Then of course I turn away and don't think about it again! hehe!

tina said...

Great job! I think 8 yards will surely fix all your gardens for like years to come. The gardens look wonderful, and not so ugly, it is natural and a fact of life, even weeds are plants. I do like it better after though:) Glad you used newsprint.

Roses and Lilacs said...

Hi Beckie, that should make your life much easier;) How lucky that your husband could borrow that cool truck.

I added two new yarrows this year. So far I love them. One is a brick red color and the other is the palest lavender. They don't spread in my garden, wish they did.
Marnie

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

You make it look so easy. A grain truck seems made for the job of getting a load of mulch.

Kathleen said...

I love the color of that salmon yarrow Beckie! It's a beauty. and your sunset echinacea is pretty too. Maybe now that you've mulched and gotten everything beautiful, you'll find a good home for it! Getting all that mulch must have kept you busy (like you weren't already busy enough, right?!!) but it looks great.

Wendy said...

Ah, weeds, they're o.k. Better than snow anyhow. But I must say that your mulch has really really made it look better.

I also didn't know about newspaper rolls, nor about putting down newspaper before mulching. Must try that sometime.

Your macro shots are really really good! Nice and clear. I love them all! The colours are so fresh looking.

Do you believe that summer is almost here? Officially, I mean? I love this time of year! Happy gardening!

Morning Glories in Round Rock said...

My, what lovely mulch you have, Beckie! There is nothing that will make me excited as the thought of all that lovely mulch to spread around unless it is bags of leaves--more mulch! LOL!

Your coneflower is gorgeous. And that Apple Blossom yarrow is very nice. I would love to have some like that. I am like you when it comes to roses, I never tire of taking pictures of them. Your Martha Stewart is a beauty!

Grammy said...

Oh I love your yarrow- Apple Blossom. I have a white one I love too. When I saw your mulch truck I was so excited. When we lived in St. Louis. I had a tree trimmer bring me a number of truck loads. Here I was afraid of bringing in ticks. But I so miss free mulch. Or even buying it like you did. Have a great week.

MrBrownThumb said...

You do make it seem so easy.

btw, I didn't know I was on your blog list. I just noticed my blog there while scrolling down. I'll have to add you to the roll of local bloggers on mine.

joey said...

Wow good job, Beckie! Good luck with your gorgeous coneflower-Sunset. I once was the happy owner of 3 that are now nowhere to be seen :( Happy weekend gardening!

Mountain Mama said...

I just had to smile when I read about your rose calling to you to 'come take it's picture.' I have a few like that too and I sure understand how easy it is to be drawn to them.
Your's is a beauty and I don't blame you one little bit for showing it again.

See ing how beautifu; your gardens l;ook with mulch make sme want to hurry and get my yard done so I can do that too. I have beauty bark around most of the gardens in front of the house but they need more now.
I used newspaper and grass clippings in my veggie garden and it is working great to keep the weeds down.

I didn't know what your mystery flower was till you told. It really is pretty.

beckie said...

Lisa, hubby can be such a sweetie at times. :) I went to the local newspaper(a small one) and they had these end rolls ofr sale at $3.00 a piece. I bought 2 but one is going to be enough to do my gardens many times over.

Janet, thanks. I don't take the paper anymore-I read it on line. Now, I just need to get the rest of the beds done.

beckie said...

Monica, I am sure your beds don't look like mine! When I found the new coneflower it was such a great price-half what we pay around here. Why didn't I get more!!

Gail, thank you! The roll did make it much easier to lay out. Just roll and go. :)

beckie said...

Dee, with all the weeds it was hard to see any of the plants. In some of the other beds, the weeds are about to outgrow the plants-need to keep at it!

Rose, the yarrow looks so different when you can see the individual flowers. I should have thought to get more coneflowers at that price and shared. :(

Mulch is such a gardener's friend. I love the way it is working in your veggie garden.

beckie said...

Susie, I tend to be like you with some of the beds-just turn and walk away. The weeds get to be overwhelming at times. Hopefully the mulch and the newsprint will give me the 'umph' to get all the gardens done soon. Of course it has to quit raining long enough to do it. :)

Tina, you are right of course that weeds are plants, but why do they chose our gardens to grow in? :) I learned about newsprint from reading garden blogs!

beckie said...

Marnie, hubby knows all the farmers around here so the truck was really no problem. It was just getting things in motion. :) Rose gave me this yarrow and I love the ferny look. I would love to have more colors-will look for the red. I can't imagine yours not spreading though. Maybe it's the type. Hopefully your new ones will.

MMD, well not easy. :) But the truck load was just what we needed. Buying by the bag would have been much more expensive and certainly a lot more work.

beckie said...

Thanks Kathleen. Still no home for the coneflower. :( But it has been so rainy I haven't had much chance to do anything more in the gardens. I'm not complaining too much as it means I don't haveto water!

Wendy, yes weeds are a little better than snow. :) I learned about the newspaper under mulch here on the garden blogs. I have always said you learn the neatest things reading blogs.
You know how I am with those macro shots-just can't resist. Summer is here for sure-have had some 90's this week and high humidity. UGH!

beckie said...

MG, if you want some of this yarrow, I'd be happy to send you some. Just send me an email. A pretty rose just begs to have it's picture taken doesn't it?!

Grammy, thanks for visiting! There are tree rimmers around where you can get free mulch-but they are few and far between. Next year, I am going to add some different colors of the yarrow. I really like the airy look of the foliage.

beckie said...

Hi, MBT. Thought it would be fun to keep track of some of the great people I met at Spring Fling. What a wonderful time we had!

Joey, I have heard that the newer colors of coneflowers don't over winter as well as the purple ones. Will just have to see I guess. Maybe try to put it in a protected area.

beckie said...

Bev, I knew others would understand about the rose. :)What is beauty bark? That's a new term to me. Newspapers and grass clippings sounds like a great way to keep down weeds in the veggie garden. The yarrow blooms really look different when you see them so close. When I down loaded my pictures, I had to double check to see jsut what I'd taken a picture of. :)

Cheryl said...

Hi Beckie.....a job worth doing. It looks great, it really does. Mulching is so necessary if you want to keep the work down. It will help you no end, as you have so little time. I like the roll of paper technique....great idea.......
When our logs are delivered in the autumn they come in a huge truck....when he tips them out my heart sinks, as I know they have to be moved and put under the log store. It is not my most favourite job....Mr P and I do it together and usually have some fun while we do it.....

Hope you have had a lovely weekend with your lovely girls......

Cheryl said...

Me again....forgot to say I love the blooms, especially that coneflower.....mine have not done too well ....perhaps they do not like my soil.....

perennialgardener said...

What a great way to make a not so pretty space lovely again. :)

garden girl said...

Hi Beckie! Your blooms are beautiful.

We haven't seen any JB yet, but if they've reached you I'm sure it won't be long before they make it here. :(

That looks like a lot of work, but the results are worth the effort. Your newly-mulched beds look great.

Sue said...

I enjoyed your photos, and wish I would have thought to use paper or even newspaper under the mulch at my garden across the street. It was left to do its own thing for a number of years, and there are all kinds of weeds coming up after every weeding, and trees trying to re-sprout.

Your place is shaping up nicely!