Happy Spring, Rocky Mt gardeners! #2

b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)May 18, 2013

Project 2!

That aspen tree in the corner is the same tree in both photos. This is the northeast corner of my lot. So that part of the yard, right in front of the river rock, gets full, hot sun from south and west for most of the summer. Grass just doesn't seem to grow there. Bindweed grows great! So I'm wondering now about sedum varieties!

They are sun tolerant, right? Heat tolerant , right? They are succulents, right? Hens and chicks? I recall Skybird had some gorgeous varieties at her house, but I don't recall the names. Any favorites?

There's another whole feng shui piece to this as well. For my home, the NE location is my prosperity, abundance, wealth center. Inside, it is my kitchen sink. Outside would be the sedum corner. Over my sink, I have jade plants. (That's what the book said to do.) The leaves are round and cushy, which is a good thing , from what I gather. So it seems that sedum varieties would be just right. :)

So the little map shown in the link talks about different areas of your home. Who knows? The black square at the bottom is the front door entrance to your home. As I move through my house, the room in the back on the left is the kitchen, and in the very corner is the sink. I'm a messy housekeeper by nature, and I prefer to leave dirty dishes in the sink, soaking in soapy water. I had dead plants hanging up high because I couldn't reach it with the pitcher.
Well, these are very bad things in the feng shui world, and I don't see how this could have anything to do with poor financial health. But I read about "Kitchen Abundance Center", and fixed it. Maybe things are connected in ways we don't see. But since then, my work load has tripled.

Here is a link that might be useful: feng shui home arrangement map

This post was edited by b2alicia on Sun, Jun 2, 13 at 11:01

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highalttransplant(z 5 Western CO)

I don't know anything about the feng shui stuff, but the Lupine are lovely : )

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 9:00PM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Thank you!

I like the Lupine too, but for some reason, I haven't seen them sprouting this year...

** glances over at the big standard poodle**

I still haven't figured out how to keep Percy completely out of the perennial bed, and the Lupine may have been a casualty!

    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 12:52AM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Here are a few better pictures of the area where I'm thinking of putting the sedum collection.

a better close-up

You notice the mess along the fence and around the trunk of the aspen. That's courtesy of Mr Percy the standard poodle. We're still working on the issue of him throwing himself at the fence when people walk by on the sidewalk outside.

This is how that spot looks when it's tidy.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 8:16PM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Sedum are in, fence is up.

Several small cuttings of Dragon's Blood , um, and I don't have the other labels nearby.

So far, Percy has not tried to crash through the little chicken wire fence...

Should I do anything else around the little plants? I have a few choices for mulch. What would you recommend?

    Bookmark   June 1, 2013 at 11:27AM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Hi B2,

I'm still getting caught up from being gone 2 1/2 weeks! Just noticed your wonderings about sedum and hen & chicks!

What you've done looks great and with ground cover sedums they'll spread fairly quickly and you won't really need mulch in there. If you want something while they're growing I'd recommend a thin layer of small bark mulch. With that you can easily pull it back as they spread, and they'll grow over whatever happens to get left and it'll eventually decompose.

But the grass right next to them will keep sending rhizomes into the sedum which will be very hard to get out of the middle of the plants so I highly recommend putting some sort of edging/barrier between the grass and the sedum area. It won't stop it completely, but it'll sure help!

For that little strip you have you might want to consider eventually replacing the sedums with hen & chicks. No round leaves but there would be other advantages! They spread more slowly so they'd take longer to completely fill in the area but when they do they'll be VERY dense and they do a pretty good job of keeping out most weed seedlings (still need to keep the grass out of there!) They also have less upkeep. The sedums need to be cut down once or twice a year to keep them compact and good looking, especially after they're done blooming--and it takes a while for them to come back after you cut them down. No cutting down with the hen & chicks! Every year a few of them will bloom and you just pull them out or cut those few off at the base and you're good to go! So, less upkeep and they grow denser than the sedums. The only downside is that you don't get the flowers of the sedums! But you could put a mix of different varieties in there and let them all grow together so you'd have some "variety", especially in spring/early summer when they're at the height of their color!

If you have enough sun in that corner you could also plant a few of the upright sedums thru the rock mulch--varieties with dark leaves would be pretty against the white rock!

Your yard always looks so neat and well-kept!!!


    Bookmark   June 1, 2013 at 11:58AM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Thank you, skybird! Such good info!

Question...is hen and chicks considered to be in the cactus family? Or just a cousin of sedum? The feng shui stuff says to avoid cactus, unless you need something specifically for protection.

I looked at some pictures of different hen and chicks, and it seems like there are lots of varieties, and some do not look too prickly.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2013 at 7:28PM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Not cactus at all, B2! Just succulents the same as sedum! I'm not into feng shui at all, so I'll need to take your word for what it is you're looking for!

There are hundreds and hundreds of varieties of hen & chicks! I have probably close to a couple dozen by now! If you want to get some idea of the possibilities, I'll link my old Hen & Chicks Addiction thread below, and I don't have time right now to live-link them but I'll include a couple copy/paste links to sites that sell them. On the first site, on the right side, click Semps - A, Semps - B, etc. On the second site you need to just go thru them page by page, but there are also separate pages for Semps - jumbo size and Semps arachnoideum in the left menu.



Have fun looking,

Here is a link that might be useful: Hen & Chicks Addiction!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2013 at 11:21PM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Thank you, skybird!
Wow, you're right...there are zillions of them!

Someone mentioned that squirrels like them though??

I have a family of them that run back and forth along the fence.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pretty one that I like

    Bookmark   June 2, 2013 at 12:22AM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Well, I turned my back for a few days, and that sweet little sedum bed is now overrun with bindweed and this other weed... I think it's purslane.

I got most of it cleaned out today, but I should take a picture of this second weed, just to make sure of its ID.

I'm also trying something with the bindweed..I'll put it the next reply.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 11:27PM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

I read something over in the WEEDS forum about a good experiment to try for bindweed. I started it a few days ago.

Scroll down to the last reply, and that's what I did. Bry84 did a great job with his description, and I'm trying to follow his steps.

Here is a link that might be useful: My fight against bindweed.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 11:50PM
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Yes, that is purslane, b2Alicia. Remove. I once set a nice purslane plant on a concrete block in full sun. Upside down! In 3 weeks it was not only still alive, but it was blooming! Burying kills them quickly.

In the RMG story on bindweed, that went on for years/a lot of years/more years, there is talk about putting the above-ground part of the plant in bottles of weedkiller.

What is interesting is that the guy in England used a little more water to dilute it. Apparently, he was hoping that it wouldn't kill the plant too fast so that more of chemical would reach the distant roots.


    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 1:36PM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Thanks, Steve!

I'll get rid of it. As I was reading about it, some articles said to put it in salads, that it was full of great nutrients, etc. I think I'll just throw it out....

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 11:44PM
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Kenny said that he had the best luck controlling bindweed by spraying it in the fall.

I had a mess of the stuff this spring along a south facing wall - I sprayed it with roundup, it didn't seem to do anything for 3 full weeks. Then it all died.

I am having pretty good luck controlling it with a very heavy mulch of grass clippings. The vines eventually wind their way through, but then I pull it out along with some convoluted foot-long root that developed as it pushed through the mulch - which must seriously weaken the plant. All in all, its a whole lot less than without the mulch.

The contrast between the heavily mulched veggie garden and the not-mulched flower beds ..... yesterday evening, when the front, main flower bed was in the shade, I cajoled my daughter to help and we picked a 5 gallon bucket of flowering bind weed in about 5 minutes......

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 10:51AM
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b2alicia(zone 5 Westminster)

Good job, David!
A friend of mine said the same thing last week (cajoled daughter into helping with weeds), but she had to pay her $10!


    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 1:56PM
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