Gardeners Roll Call: Monday, January 23, 2017

Posted by on January 23, 2017


So beautiful, even without the sun. Wednesday was like the perfect spring day!


Saturday/Sunday 0.2 in.



Celebrating MLK, Jr. day!

Elizabeth Galecke and I walked 11,636 steps today!! Truth? We were both dragging. lol#LivingTheLifeOfRaleigh morning walk


Stopped by my buddy, John Buettner’s garden for bamboo. I scored. I took the side shoots to cover the chicken run, hiding my girls from the hawks and falcon.The long stalks will become a privacy hide. Now that I have the materials, I’ll work on that next weekend…b/c I start my new job tomorrow, she says with a sing-song voice.

Started pulling house hold items to put into a garage sale. Elizabeth thought she would have one in spring; I invited myself to sell with her <3

Tested my girls in the run, and they could walk right on out. Major rethinking for next weekend. Until then? They can stay inside their coop.


My first day as a gardener at Fearrington Village!! Greg Fitch, my boss, toured me around to meet people. We had our weekly Tuesday morning gardener staff meeting. The team is wonderful. All good. Then I got started at the Spa gardens. Loving it already!!!

Plus, these flowers were waiting for me on my new desk!

Welcome flowers from Fearrington


Donna, Julian, and I went to the warehouse to pick a chair for my desk. It was a mecca for everything I love. It was amazing…better than any antique shop I’ve ever visited!!!

Donna schooled me on watering the house plants in the interior rooms. Loved seeing these well-appointed spaces!!! Then Donna and I mulched the Spa area. We popped some of the mid-height mondo grass and spread it under a deciduous shrub. I forgot to see what shrub that was. lol. The greenery looks good there!


We all drove up to the Green and Growin show in Greensboro. I have already made lists of much needed ground covers.


Donna and I made a Lowe’s run for some incidentals. Another meeting with Greg…he wanted to see how I was doing. All this time, I’m itching to get back in the garden. I started the maintenance of the spa garden on Tuesday, but haven’t had a chance to finish. Looking good now, and I also started at the real estate  listings gardens. I’ll finish that on Monday. But I’m really dying to do is redesign the garden around the Goat. I see it in my head…now I need to get it on paper.

Elizabeth and I walked this morning, getting in over 11k steps. It was great to get back out there again.


This is what I woke up too. With the long dark of January, I’ve not seen the Mixed Border in the daylight. I’m glad too, b/c I didn’t see this slowly come into her own–I saw her in all her glory. Such a nice surprise!

Prunus mume 'Bridal Veil' in Helen's Haven


Here’s another view agains the Pinus ‘Hillside Winter Gold’.

Hillside Winter Gold in Helen's Haven

This working girl not had only today to run her errands, but I had to write a piece I owe to Triangle Gardener. That’s how it’s going to go down. I love it!

A piece I did for Country Gardens on Brie Author’s garden came out. It looked great.

An artist friend stopped by, Jayne Walther, to take vignette pics of the garden. Jayne’s gallery is doing a show called Inter Depend Dance with bees and pollinators, plus other wildlife. I’m super excited to be a part of her work.

Jayne flattered me to no end by saying once she finished for the day, ‘Helen your vignettes are a true work of art.’ She kept going on, with welcoming flattery, and finally, I had to break the news to her. Jayne, in full disclosure, “I’m a photo stylist?” There are some happy accidents, but mostly, these vignettes are staged. Then there it came:, Jayne said, “That explains everything!” She made me beam. If you rush through Helen’s Haven, you might miss the details. The artist in Jayne had her slow to take in the details. Jayne is hosting a show in her Cary gallery the end of April through May. I’ll share more details later.

While Jayne was over, my new 2014 Honda Civic Hybrid was delivered. It has been 15 years since my last new car. A lot has changed. I shopped through my AAA membership. I saved about $2,000 dollars doing so, and the connivence was the best part. I love my sporty little hybrid…that is, if you can say sporty and hybrid in the same sentence. 😉

My new car: a 2014 Honda Civic Hybrid

I did manage to get some gardening time. I’m still popping mid-sized mondo grass from the front edge of the right porch border to make it such there is one large mass of this look. Mixed in was more dwarf mondo, and I moved that stand to the back to the path between the porch and the Mixed Border. It will take a while, but it will one day look marvelous. I like the look of the dwarf best. In fact, a stand of it is one of my favorite looks. This takes an eternity to grow, but you have to start one day. I honestly can’t remember if I started  with the mid-size in the front, or if over the years it reverted. I should have paid more attention. At this point, I’m keeping the midsize in the front, since the scale works. But the path in the back will all be dwarf.


Yesterday I thought it was February 22, then I realized, life is going full speed, but life never hurries through January, so why?

This month is my only burden in life. That’s right, an entire month! It’s right about now that I see hope with the sun rising earlier and earlier. I need sunlight to function. Maybe I’m SAD. I have a candle burning now as I write this at 858 AM. I choose not to walk with Elizabeth this morning, so I can work on a few things around the house and a piece for Triangle Gardener. After the 31st, I’ll be home free for another 11 months.

Today, I reinforced the chicken run. I’m hoping this will keep my girls safe. Well, still not done, They can get out again! Will work on it more next weekend.

Have you ever done something so stupid, you actually have to look around and hope no one saw you do it? That happened to me when I changed the chain on the STIHL chainsaw. It was dull when I wanted to make more pallet logs. I changed it, added oil, and cleaned it up a bit. But once it was on, it still wouldn’t cut well. I wondered if there was something in the speed. I couldn’t for the life of me figure it out. Then it hit me: when I change the chain, I put the old one back on! Good thing I didn’t recycle the chain yet. All better now.

Went to Lowes to pick up wood for a Art of the Garden privacy project I was working on. The dimensions were decided based on the size of wood available. That is one of the best parts of using these M-braces. The bamboo private high rise will be four-feet by two-feet and 18-inches high. To do so, I bought two, four x six x eight foot long pieces of treated lumber. Lowe’s service cut each of these in half so that I could make two sides four foot by 18-inches high.

This was also my first all in a tiny trunk!

Wood for privacy
I also bought three, four x six x 10-foot long. These were cut into two-foot sections with an 18-inch height. I brought them inside to dry. I’m not sure what color I’ll paint them, but once the wood is dry, I can do so. Then the inside will be filled with bamboo. I’m not sure how much bamboo I’ll need, so I may be making a return visit to John Buettner’s bamboo field.

Finally hung the Helen’s Haven festive flags I picked up at PPA in MN.

Helen's Haven Flags

Cleaned out the coop.


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