Five weeks since I was here last; hard to believe. But the weeds are evidence. The winter weeds are filling the gardens in patches and scatterings: dandelion, bittercress, vetch, buttercup. I worked for a couple of hours at hand-weeding, with a break while I trimmed down what was left of the summer flower stems. We did a pretty thorough job over the past year in controlling the winter weeds, so this crop has to be coming from seeds in the soil from prior years when the gardens were neglected. Garden maintenance is much easier if consistently weeded. It would also help, a lot, if there was a robust green ground cover to smother the weed seedlings. Ground covers, though, have a couple of drawbacks: they can make the beds look untidy, or they can fail due to deer browsing. I've included photos here of one of the patches of weeds and of two potential ground covers. We have a patch of yarrow starting to spread as a ground cover, and we have many violets which could be a nice ground cover except the deer keep it trimmed almost to the ground.
We started clearing the district office landscape beds in April. I think we got the new plants in and the mulch spread by the end of June. Since then I have been periodically weeding out the liriope which was missed. Today I found more liriope, but also now we are in the fall seed-sprouting season. The seeds of a weedy vetch, along with other seeds, are still in the soil from previous summers and they have sprouted copiously. I expect these to be a problem for several years, as they are still showing up in other beds that we have had under control for at least a couple of years. It took about two hours of hoeing, raking and mulching to clean the beds once more.
The baldcypress in front of the building is changing to an attractive mottled green-and-gold.
Thoughts on the park, its residents and how to preserve its natural beauty.