planning for august 25

stickgarden(z10 CA/ Sunset 21)June 20, 2007

Hello all-

I'm very much a beginner, just bought my first house about six months ago, and I've been working hard on my yard since the beginning of april- The house is small, but the land is huge and we have patios and terracing everywhere, so it's a lot of fun. I've gotten rid of a tiny bit of the neglect, put in some native grasses, a vegetable garden, some wildflowers, and a succulent garden, plus a small area of ferns and hydrangeas- built a compost bin, set up watering with soaker hoses, transplanted all the jasmine and bougainvilleas I had in containers at the old house (so far lot t, I think they might make it!) but there's still so much to do... And this is all on top of remodeling the house, opening a business, and working more than 50 hours a week.

So, given the time restraints, I'm a little concerned about our housewarming party, which is coming up at the end of August. Most of the partying will happen outside and I want it to live up to my vision- I guess I'll just put some mulch down wherever it looks neglected- but I'm looking for anything I can do now, easy and inexpensive, that will help- seeds I can plant, mainly, I guess. Also, I am trying to keep it organic, low water, mostly california natives- don't want to plant anything too invasive that I'll later regret. We have a lot of ivy and ice plant that I already have to deal with, don't want any more of that! I indulged myself with the ferns but I'm already a little bit sorry about it (doesn't stop me from putting more in there, I'm afraid).

Please help! I am a quick learner but there's so much information, and I just don't have the time!

Thanks so much everyone- I've already gotten so much knowledge from all of you-

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calpat(zone9ab No.Ca.)

Hi Stickgarden..well..after reading all that I think I'm ready for a nap! Take a deep breath, it's all going to be there when you get to it. If you were considering any small trees or shrubs in containers, this might be a good time to take a look at them. For the open house party, I would just be concerned with everything being clean and tidy & this can be done economically with mulches. It doesn't have to be all "designer" type. Bales of straw can be attractive especially if trimmed off with some type of dark bark mulch. Just relax, hang in there, you'll be getting so many ideas very soon. Seems like you've got a lot of projects all going at the same time, that's NOT a good thing. If you start a job on a time limit, make sure you spend 3/4 of that time planning/thinking it out and 1/4 doing! Be sure to make this an enjoyable project, have fun with it! I'm sure you'll find lots of friends here that are loaded with suggestions, advice, etc. Pat

    Bookmark   June 20, 2007 at 1:08PM
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I agree with Pat about the stress thing (as well as the mulch). Of course, I do everything I can to avoid stress. *looking around at the house that needs cleaned* :D

One thing to consider with natives is the best time to plant them, hands down, is fall, right before the rains come. As you know, natives don't need much, if any, water during the long, dry season, so planting them now would be more stressful on them. (Don't ask me how I know this. LOL)

Anyway, one thing Pat mentioned was containers, and for any party where you want neat, quick color and/or style, that's definitely the way to go. You can either pot up things that will be temporary and give you a lot of "oomph", or use things that you can later put in the ground - when you have much more time. However, pots equal $$, so you wouldn't want to go overboard with those.

As for seeds, the only ones I can think of which MIGHT bloom for you in time would be sunflowers. I just started some, and the tallest one is about 2 ft. But they really need water.

There are probably many more folks over in the Discussions area who would have more ideas for you, especially people from So. Cal.

I hope everything works out for you!


    Bookmark   June 21, 2007 at 9:32AM
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stickgarden(z10 CA/ Sunset 21)

don't even talk to me about naps! That's the holy grail to me. Luckily, I enjoy this labor and consider it my exercise, meditation, and creative expression all rolled into one- not to mention, the investment involved in home improvement.
Thanks for the ideas and I've reposted in the discussions area. Didn't realize I was in a different spot.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2007 at 2:34PM
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Hi there, if you have lots of room crepe myrtles will do well once established, they don't like a lot of water. Neither do butterfly bushes, apparently and they grow very fast and very large!

Good luck for your party:)

    Bookmark   June 22, 2007 at 12:16PM
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