These cooler October days are great for physical labor, so I’ve been digging. Actually I’ve been double digging, adding another foot to the Cutting Garden’s west edge. A foot may not sound like much, but since the Cutting Garden is over 72′ long, that’s another 72 sq. ft. of growing space available for next year. I decided to double dig it, because this area has never had its dense layer of hardpan penetrated. It’s heavy clay, so I was able to add some compost that will hopefully make next year’s flowers very happy. Most of the color has been harvested so the Cutting Garden is looking a little drab. There are some zinnias and blue salvia at the far end, but they don’t show in the photo. All of the verbena bonariensis will be coming out yet this weekend, because I don’t want it to drop seed. It’s a lovely plant, and the butterflies love it, but it’s just not a good cutting flower in terms of vase life, so out it comes. Some will be moved to the bottom of the Deck Garden, and others will be potted for the garden club plant sale next May.
And then I double dug what will be the front half of the former Berry Row. Funny I didn’t notice how crooked my row was until I was taking the photo. Guess I should have set a stake and string. Trust me, it will get straightened! The dug part is the east half, where 300 daffodils will go. Actually beginning at the very far (south) end, about 80 daffodils have already been planted. You can see that it looks a bit tidier. The others have yet to arrive, and are still vacationing on a ship somewhere in the Atlantic. If the weather remains good, I’ll dig the east half yet this fall, so it will be ready for rudbeckias, yarrows, mountain mint and a progression of sunflowers. And, if I’m really ambitious, Berry Row 2 can be dug as well. It will be home to lots of new dahlias, the overwintered dahlia tubers that I’ll divide in early spring, and gladiolas since deer don’t seem to like them. More sunflowers, possibly some zinnias and celosia over-flow from the Cutting Garden will go in the back half of that row. There are LOTS of seeds coming, and they will all need space to grow!
We’ve had rain, sometimes hard rain for two days now, so no digging for a while and I can use the break. When it stops, the potager could certainly use some attention and tidying. There are more melon and tomato vines to remove, beans and peas to pick, and peppers to harvest. We still haven’t had a frost, which is very unusual, but I think I’ll begin moving the tender potted plants to the patio just in case. Have a great week, everyone!