2018 Fall Planting

I haven’t posted in a while; more on that at the bottom of this post.

After  observing my small prairie garden and the rest of my yard during this wet summer, I noticed the tall grass and goldenrods were falling over. More of this weird grass had sprouted up as well. I showed this picture to the person at NCBG’s grass area during their fall sale, and with his ID, suddenly it all clicked.

Wool grass, Scirpus cyperinus

Wool grass is a carex species that grows in wet meadows, swamps, and marshes, in full to part sun. Prairie plants tend to flop when they either don’t have enough sun or are in wet soil. I have some type of broad-leaf, short, bright-green carex growing everywhere, willow tree saplings sprouting everywhere, and common rush (Juncus effusus) and I believe path rush (Juncus tenuis) all over the hill above the “prairie”. Duh! I have a wet meadow!
So, after much sorrow, I gave a bunch of my seedlings to my friend Kurt who is growing a native garden in full sun and poor ground, and created a list of part-sun, moisture-loving plants.

I scored at Niche Gardening‘s fall sale with their native azaleas, which will give a lot of color to the meadow. It was really hard to pick, but I came home with:

  • Rhododendron flammeum ‘Red Inferno’, Ernest Koone selection of Oconee Azalea,
    Zones: 6-8
  • Rhododendron prunifolium, Plumleaf Azalea
    Blooms of brilliant orange-red in late summer
    Zones: 6-9
  • Rhododendron prunifolium x arborescens, Plum-Sweet Azalea
    Fragrant summer blooms of rose pink
    Zones: 6-9
  • Rhododendron austrinum, Florida Azalea
    Large native shrub with fragrant yellow blooms
    Zones: 6-9

I planted all but the Red Inferno 21-Oct in the meadow inside the fence, and will pull up some forsythia by the deck to plant the Inferno.

Events over the summer…

I haven’t posted for the entire summer. My mother was unexpectedly scheduled for surgery to replace an atrial heart valve in June, and also needed cataract surgery, so that has taken most  of my time. The requisite family drama also had to happen around Mom’s care, which has shaken me more than it should.

Mom has fully recovered and is doing better than before, but her aunt (more like a sister in age and time spent together) passed just before Labor Day at 93, and that woman’s daughter, who has been chronically ill for years, died the following Saturday. We were close to both of these fine ladies, and they will be sorely missed.

I also had a position change at work, resulting in a lot more work hours. I was allowed time off and flex-time while Mom recovered, but since then I’ve worked 50+ hours for several weeks now.

I’m trying to rebalance everything again, but I feel like I’ve taken a huge step backwards much like my garden with its massive growth of stilt grass. Sigh.

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