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Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's Clean Up

We were blessed with absolutely gorgeous weather this weekend so I made the most of it and spent time outside, planting daffodil bulbs and doing some general clean up.

I haven't grown daffodils in 20-something years, when I stuck some in the ground at the first house I lived in when I moved to Texas. Those did.. okay... and that's about all you could say, so I just didn't bother again.  But I've always like daffodils, they're such sunny, happy flowers, so when I saw some supposedly especially for warm climate gardens in WalMart, of all places, I grabbed a couple of bags of bulbs.

We'll see how they do and I can take solace in the fact that, at $5 for 12 bulbs, at least I didn't spend a fortune if they fizzle. 

I planted them in the relatively new bed I created in September, as well as in around the trees in the front garden.

As I was planting them, I was able to use some of my very own Black Gold -- compost!!

Since I only started composting in October, I was thrilled to find I actually had some usable compost!

After I planted the bulbs, I got on with some clean up -- which involved trimming back the dead sweet potato vine, as well as several other plants that had died back in the freeze.

It was exciting to see signs of new growth already...

At the base of most of the milkweed, there was a flush of new green leaves. Most of them I just trimmed back to make the front look tidy, but a couple I had to pull out because they were growing in inconvenient places.

Underneath the seemingly dead chrysanthemums was healthy new growth waiting to be uncovered.

Behind the utility boxes, the hollyhock that I had to cut back to the ground last summer because of rust seems to have made it through the winter frosts with no problem.

I didn't think these were perennials and wasn't expecting it to come back at all after it bloomed its second year.  Does anyone know if it will bloom again this year or will I have to wait till next year to see it bloom again?

And finally, this chrysanthemum was blooming, even underneath all it's dead stalks from last year.  I took this photo as I was part-way through trimming it back, I was so amazed to see flowers!

Several times throughout the morning, I found myself smiling at the thought of, "Where else would I be planting and weeding on New Year's weekend with the sun on my back and a glass of ice tea in my hand?  Only in Texas!"

Happy New Year everyone.

Words and photographs by Jayne Wilson, Green and Serene, Jayne's Country Garden.


meemsnyc said...

I love daffodils, they definitely are pretty happy flowers. I planted some bulbs also and can't wait until they start growing! Ooh, black gold, your compost looks awesome.

Rosie@leavesnbloom said...

I planted lots of daffodils in the autumn - I hope the ones you've planted can cope with your warm temperatures. There's nothing quite like a yellow trumpet in a spring garden!

Happy New Year to you to Jayne

Jayne said...

Thanks Rosie, Happy New Year to you too. It will certainly be interesting to see how they do. I'll keep you posted.
meemsnyc - yes I was thrilled with the compost too. The stuff on the top still needs to breakdown some more and I gave it a good mix and watering at the weekend, so hopefully that will help it.