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Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Posted by lavender_lass WA zone 4 (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 19, 10 at 13:22

Last winter, I had all these great plans for my gardens. I knew I was taking on a lot, so I decided to wait on the bigger veggie garden for next year. My two biggest projects this year have been the fairy garden and the kitchen garden.

Well, when I ordered my roses, I got a little carried away and it turned out I had to redo the front bed too...and those two little plum trees really needed something under them...it was getting too hard to mow in between them :)

So instead of two gardens, I ended up with four (five if you count redoing the little bed in front of the porch) and I'm paying for it now! LOL

Although I've managed to do pretty well with all the front beds and fairy garden (where I put all the roses) my kitchen garden has been a bit overrun with weeds. Happy to say, I'm finally starting to get that more under control...but I have to ask myself, What was I thinking????

Has anyone else taken on too many projects this summer? Do you find yourself with NO social life and seeing weeds when you close your eyes? I'm probably not alone, so please share your garden tales :)


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

It's a common affliction. I've been doing better since getting cured of my rose addiction and then my iris addiction.

Another factor has helped me limit my plans: limited energy. I'm 67, and in the past few years it's taken more and more effort to accomplish anything in the garden.

This year my mantra was focus. I gave up struggling with numerous vegetables and focused on a few, mostly beans. I vowed not to acquire any new perennials this year, but to focus more on zinnias, gloriosa daisies, sunflowers, and nicotiana. With the zinnias and sunflowers, I can pull them up in the fall and cover their area with cardboard for the winter. Goodbye, weeds. Cardboard is my friend. :-)

Here's my bean arch, accompanied by various non-beans. How cottagey can you get? LOL

Photobucket


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I have so much to do that I have to give my yard appointments.

Monday - mow
Tuesday - water and work/weed on North beds
etc. until all the yard is covered

and then work in time to plant all those little pots of plants that I did not go to buy, but that just "jumped" into my shopping cart at Lowes or Walmart

and then do cooking and house work which are low priority.

Just typing this made me tired.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

alisande, I feel just as you do. And this year I also cut back on the vegetable garden after many years of putting in as much as I could and then sometimes seeing it go to waste because I didn't have time to even eat it! This year, I just did lettuce and greens, a couple tomato plants, green peppers onions and beets. The green beans were strictly for show (blooms). Next year, no beets and no green beans at all.

I also stopped buying perennials, only got a couple this year, and will only replace my old ones if necessary. After nearly 28yrs. of tending my garden, I'm ready to just scale down to mowing, edging, weeding and trimming boxwood. Still sounds like alot of work! :)


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

LL, you just brought up a subject that has been really bothering me this year! I will be 71 in September and I don't have the energy to do all I do. I am thinking of streamlining all the flower beds to where I can just mow some of them down! When I can't care for them and they look crappy, it makes me so irritable.....

In a fit of pique this morning, I told my husband I was ready to sell the farm;I was getting sick of constantly being behind and nothing ever quite up to par.
He just looked at me and said nobody is making you do all this..........and I realized he was absolutely right.

I will spend the winter re-thinking my lifestyle. I want to begin enjoying my "senior" years a little more. I know I still want to grow our food. I am a fanatic about good, healthy food.

I really believe it is the 10 or 12 large flower beds that are depressing me.

Some serious planning will be happening this winter for sure.

I am glad you brought this up. I was feeling pretty depressed. Sharing these thoughts is a very good thing!
Thank you.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Oh boy, I am right with you! I turned 60 this spring, and am finding that doing it all just is not happening this year. Depressed because not everything is looking like it "should". We added way more flower gardens than was the original plan. I work full time and our family lives some distance away. It seems that it must be a shorter distance for us to travel to see them than it is for them to travel to see us. :-) They do get down to visit once or twice a year, but seems like we end up going to visit at least once a month between all 4 families and grandkid's birthdays, etc. DH is a long-haul trucker and not always home on weekends so all the work around the house falls to me too.

We own an older home and are working on trying to get everything done before we retire. At least the big $$ things. This year we want to finish painting the house, we started that last year after we finished painting the garage we built last year.

Guess it is time to admit that I am not as young as I used to be?


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

While I took on too much this year, I still have two gardens I want to add. Some shrubs/roses in front of my lilac hedge and a veggie garden for all the big things (pumpkins, potatoes, squash, corn) that don't fit my kitchen garden area. Then, that's it for gardens...unless I ever remodel the old farmhouse...and then I might have to add some roses around the front LOL.

Gldno- You bring up a very good point. I think too many of us get carried away and have too much garden to keep up with and it can be frustrating. My mom is retired and she loves to garden. That being said, she's steamlining some of her spaces, too. It's just so much maintenance! I keep telling her, not every side of the house and fence needs to have a flower bed! LOL

She is switching over to more shrubs and edibles, with a few flowers in front (and some roses) and a butterfly garden around the back fence. Once this is in, it should be less work, since the weeds will mostly blend in with everything else :)

Remember, if you're not having fun and enjoying the garden...why are we doing all this? Especially if it's not for food...or maybe a few old fashioned roses...


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Yes, we're in the same place as many others and did take on too much starting last year but that's normal. Last year we both agreed that enlarging the house yard on our acreage and building a garden house was a good idea. So we built the garden house to close-up with only a bit of paid help, did some of the fencing, and made 2 large new perennial beds.

This year we've made another 3 new large beds (from scratch in hard clay soil), changed 2 paths, revised our compost area, worked on the garden house more, bought a lot of plants, kept all the plants alive and well, and are currently working on finishing the fencing. I should mention we are confirmed DIY'ers who seldom have help with anything and are past 65. We have geared back on some of our plans as it would have required a crew to get it all done.

Yesterday I spent a couple of hours potting up my late seeded perennial 'babies' from flats to 4" pots. So will have another 22 perennials to plant in the ground in another month or so. I could make my life easier by only seeding directly and I think that's what I may do more in the future. Works for Ma Nature.

I agree with Alisande about cardboard being my friend.

I do enjoy the garden immensely and DH does as well especially when sitting with a glass of wine and looking at it from the deck - he said recently that he likes my 'wild garden' that I let self-seed and never weed. Might do more of that as I want less, not more grass to mow, and less weeding. I have put in more shrubs this year which, in time, will take more space. We will eventually sell and I'm sure most people don't want a labor intensive garden.

OK, must go... I'm off to build a compost pile... and move the sprinkler... and stain more fence boards. Frequent question around here (with tongue in cheek) is "are we having fun yet?". LOL


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I always take on too much.I love to work in the garden and plan to work at the hospital no more than 3 and no less than 1 more year so it will quit interfering with my gardening.

I have decided that I won't put in any more beds. (of course I added a new iris bed and a new butterfly bed this year. And I am adding a area of new roses. But I may not steal any more lawn. As long as I use Preen on the soil no more than once a year, and mulch, I have little weeding to do.

Deadheading has been more work than I expected this year, but I love the blooms, so they make it worth while. I think.

Take a look at one day's deadheaded blossoms during daylily bloom season --- I wondered how it would look if I put rather than just tossed blooms in the wheelbarrow as I did my daily deadheading, I did the deadheading late in the evening instead of earyy morning and here 'tis.

Barow of Blooms

Only an idiot would take this much time..That's me, first in the idiot line..
kay


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

nope, not an idiot! I deadhead my daylilies too! :-) I wish I could retire in 3 years. I'm looking at working full time for 6 maybe 7 more years. I dream of the day I can just putz around in the gardens in the early mornings before it gets hot and not have to try to squeeze it all into the evenings and weekends.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

First of all, hello to all my old friends. I have been gone for a couple years but I do recognize a couple names.

Me, take on too much? LOL

Just built our retirement home on 2 acres of undeveloped land. Have been clearing decades of forest litter and berry bushes from our woodlands, digging rocks out of clay soil and using to create beds, amending soil, taking care of 50 rose bushes in pots and a green house full of plants that I potted and moved when I sold my house three years ago. I finally started sticking things in the ground just to get them out of pots. I work all day every day because the window of opportunity here in the PNW is short. I hurt everywhere I have a place to hurt but am determined to get ur done. Good to be back. Ill be 62 in September.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I think I did a little better on things this year. Early in spring I put in new beds in front of my shed and expanded all my backyard gardens. Granted, it's a lot to keep up with, but for some reason I feel like I'm able to just sit back and enjoy a little more this year. I'm only in my 30s, but I work full time and have no help with the gardens, so I am making myself sit back and enjoy them.

Plus, besides mowing the lawn, I couldn't care less about the grass. Weeds... bare spots... just don't care. I weedwack it all and go back to looking at the flowers. That takes a lot of worry out of the summer. :-)


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I look at all those daylilies and I think FOOD! WOW, there is a ton of food in that wheelbarrow!

My garden is due to hugely expand. I work in it a lot already, a few hours every day - some morning, some evening right now. I love it. Arthritis has kicked in this year and my elbows, back and feet just kill me. But I love it!


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I had a year like that last year. I had too many things going on in the garden, too many unfinished projects and projects that didn't work out the way I wanted them. It was discouraging and unrewarding but still a lot of work.

This year I feel like I am just humming along. We finished a couple of projects last Fall, when we got about 6 weeks of unusually comfortable working weather. We started renovating the entire garden 5 years ago. This year it is finally starting to look more like a garden and everyone in the family is enjoying it more. I've had more energy then usual this year and that is so odd, considering how hot it has been. I really pushed myself early in the season and spent a lot more time than usual out there and was exhausted every time I came in the house, but I finally got on top of things and I've finally gotten some stamina built up.

I am focusing on trying to keep things low maintenance. I have planted a lot of shrubs. Cardboard and mulch do help. So far, maintenance has not been the issue, but rather all the projects and renovations have been a lot to do. I am hoping that once all the projects are done, we will not have too much maintenance. I don't know when that will be though. I suppose by the time I finish, it will be time to start redoing the finished projects. [g]


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer??? 2

I forgot to say, that last year when I was feeling particularly discouraged, I had to adopt the attitude that the garden was never going to be exactly the way I wanted it or 'finished' and I better learn to enjoy it in spite of that. And I really can enjoy anything that is growing well. I enjoy the planning and the projects, but I enjoy just the growing too. I also decided to focus on small areas and finish them, then move on to the next area, so I wouldn't have too many half finished projects. It is much more enjoyable when you have at least one finished area that pleases you, while you are working on the rest.

LavenderLass, sometimes you have to push to get things where you want them, but maybe next year, you will sail right through. :-)


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I am really listening to you guys..and it makes me even more comfortable in my "new plan". I decided this winter, to look down the road...I am 51 this year, and while I love my gardens and do decently in keeping them up still, (if you dont count the maple seedlings and rose of sharons seedlings ) I know I wont always be able to..and I don't want to totally give it up..so I am looking down the road. I decided to hydrangea it up...nice size..big flower impact..relatively low work and years and years of rewards with no dividing, weeding..ect... I know for the real beauty it takes a few years for size...so this year, I dug up some beds..took most things out of them except for a bit here and there until the drangeas get bigger and began adding drangeas. My goal is to keep adding each and every year until I have a yard full of hostas and drangeas. Low work...big impact..and not as much work as some other things. Listening to everyone talk as the move down the road in years makes me more comfortable in my choices.

It is so easy on this forum, to read, and see beautiful pictures and then yank up ALL your grass or most and flower it up...but the reality of it is that is a heck of a lot of weekly work load. And it doesn't wait until you have time without looking terrible or reseeding. my advice to all new gardeners..beware...don't get bitten....plant slowly so you KNOW the workload...those beautiful pictures you see are the result of lots of work and tons of money...keep it all in perspective...especially available time/vs work load...
I love my gardens...but they are a good deal of work....just trying to look down the road to the years I can't but still want beauty. I have about 30 knockouts now and about a dozen drangeas. Just that alone still gives me punch..without as much deadheading..ect..I loved reading this post...good lessons for all of us....the voice of experience...nothing beats that! Thanks guys!


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

It is those darn sales-I have more than a couple of plants that still need to be planted. AND it is those weeds in the lower part of the yard-five contactor bags full and haven't made a dent. Looked out yesterday and suddenly, right in the middle, there is one that is about six feet tall! Jeez. Oh well, it was all bamboo and ivy when we moved in, so I guess I am making a little progress. Of course, it has taken 13 years to get most of it cleared. I am feeling like a young'un here at 58, but I certainly understand those aches and pains and the lack of endurance. Why is it that the dogs dig up the good stuff and never go to work on the weeds? I'll need to have a talk with them.

I'm with you prairie-it will never be perfect, so I try to keep my focus small when I am looking around the yard-only look at one plant at a time-teehee.


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Besides, I think this is the time of year when we all start to get a little tired and wonder "Where did the season go? I only got to sit and enjoy everything two or three times!" It happens every time, but then when Spring comes again we are ready for another round.

My goal is to start concentrating on the actual cottage, now that my garden is pretty much where I want it (after all these years). :)


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Reading all this made me smile. For several years I have been cutting down. Only last year I completely did over a daylily bed. This year we finally decided to add a dining room to this house(after 43 years here).The kids are all gone, but we have MANY grands, and great grands coming to visit. This project was started the day after Easter, and is just now coming to a close. My husband was in the hospital for most of June, with pneumonia and a bad heart, but much better now. Consequently I didn't get much done in my flower gardens, but managed to to keep up the vege garden. Now it is so hot and humid, I have to get up at daybreak to work outside.
I am now planning a small flower bed on the end of my new addition. It just looks too bare there with only grass. I'll be 77 in Oct. ,but think I can manage a few shrubs and flowers there.
My Dad used to say a gardener should always plant something new in the fall so he would have something to look forward to in the spring.So no matter how old you are, plant something, even if it's only a few bulbs. My advice for the day. ha


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Flowergirl- Good advice! I plan to put some bulbs in this fall, since they were so nice this past spring. We've always had daffodils, but the purple hyacinths were so pretty and the bumblebees just loved them :)


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I feel like i have alot of projects going, but thats how i like it. It keeps my mind busy and off of other things. Ive been dying to move and my dh dosnt seem to think its nessasary, so i keep digging around to keep my mind off it. I think ill eventually love it so much i wont want to leave, i hope! I do love my garden, but id LOVE to live by the ocean and thats what occupies my mind. So the projects keep me busy, till winter, when ill start whining again. :) Kinda like therapy.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Roses are one plant I stayed away from for years. Somehow I got pulled into buying a couple. They are trouble, even the 'disease free'. I ordered 4 bareroot in the spring and the jury is still out on whether they will work out, but they have potential. One trick I thought I might pass along. The second year I had planted my first roses, they had one good flush of bloom and then had foliage problems and insect problems, and I was so disgusted I was going to dig them up. I just cut them back to stubs, with no leaves, until I could get my son to dig them out for me. They surprised me by coming back with clean healthy foliage and later in the summer a small flush of new blooms. I ended up doing that again this year. I planted perennials around the rose bushes that fill in and bloom in the mid to late summer to hide the hole in the bed and enjoy the roses when they look good and get rid of them when they don't. [g] It is a whole lot less trouble to me.

I did dig out most of my Iris this year, though. They were definitely more trouble than I was willing to put up with for the couple of weeks they bloom. It's too bad, I really like them. I kept my variegated iris that look good all season and smell like grape jelly and a few of the short bearded that have been trouble free for me.

We have a lot of hydrangea and I hadn't thought of how low maintenance they are. I have room to add more too. I love them. If I were in a zone or two warmer I would really love to have more varieties. You're right keesha, they do give a big bang for your buck.

I love boxwood too. One that I rarely have to prune is Buxus sempervirens. I swear it is almost the same size that I bought it 10 years ago. [g] I prune out holes in the center for air circulation a little once in awhile and that's it.

cyn427, I get in trouble with the sales too. I haven't done too badly this year. I only have three pots left to plant. I am running out of room so that has kept my buying to a minimum.

schoolhouse, every year I try to aim for getting the garden 'ready' by Memorial Day so I can just enjoy it the rest of the season until the Fall. Never happens. [g] I barely sit in the garden. I find myself wanting to get up and go deadhead or something. I think I enjoy the garden working it rather than sitting looking at it for the most part. We need to concentrate on the cottage too.

I've been adding bulbs in the fall the last two years and decided I want to keep adding at least some every fall. I have enough daffodils so now I am adding small bulbs and bulbs into the lawn. We love hyacinths too. Bulbs are so low maintenance and always look great as long as you plant in such a way that the dying foliage is disguised. I'm still working on that.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Lilyfinch- Where by the ocean? Any particular place?

The ocean is very nice, but I've always liked the mountains. I don't live in the mountains, but near them...you can see them from the top of the hill. I do love all the pine trees and aspens we have here, but still open grassy spaces, too :)


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

OK, this seems to be the right place for me - I'm 67, I got on a roll in March and have been a weed-pulling fool - enlarging flower beds when I can hardly take care of what I've got!! A couple here have a plant sale twice a year to raise money for their missionary daughter/son-in-law - who can resist?? Great plants at reasonable prices for a good cause and many types you can't buy in other places. Since I live alone, most of the work I do myself, a couple of boys come over and clean up behind me and my son comes every two weeks and mows the grass and trims - and fusses about the extended flower beds - but he smiles while he fusses.! I have great plans for the fall.....mmmmmm what can I plant over there??


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

LL, my dh and i vacation in emerald isle n.c. and outer banks, and id love to live near there someday. Id be happy to be an hour from the ocean... I think this will be the only battle we have! lol hes very happy here. Pa has lots of mountains, tho not beautiful colorado style mountains. Someday! Till then ill keep removing his precious lawn for my plants!


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

First of all, Pat, it is so could to "see" you again!

Ironically, just this morning I told Diane I was getting rid of anything that was not easy, or self caring.

We are both 66 and have had multiple back surgeries.
She left here and went to VA to visit her grandson and his wife. She will be back tomorrow.
I certainly discovered that I, alone, can't take care of the yard or the house by myself.

I think her son and mine will get some plants for their new homes.

K


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I have been pondering this overwhelmed-ness all year. I adore my gardens but I wish I had half as much of them. It is just infinitely more fun for me when they are "under control" and I'm primping instead of major renovating.

I worked in Ohio for 7 years with a condo there and flew back and forth on weekends. All things considered with giving my gardens almost no care at all during that time, it's a wonder they survived and with a year's care are at least generally 'back'.

I am fighting urges to get back into roses - they are gorgeous and I adore them but they are very high maintenance here even the easy care ones do better with fertilizing and the japanese beetles just make mincemeat of them. I am going to add more bulbs this fall.

I had that one big bed by our pond and it was horribly overgrown and weedy but once I cleared it out - the show of deep blue larkspur with the weigela and flag iris was lovely this spring and right now it is full of zinnias and sunflowers and I am liking it a lot. It is really easy at this point.

We have that ridiculously huge vegetable garden and I keep fighting with my husband to make it smaller.

I announced that I'd sell the place and move to a townhouse in Charleston, SC and my husband nearly fainted. He loves it out here in the country and while I love it, too - my years of traveling and living in a small place with a small garden taught me I find a lot of pleasure in that lifestyle as well and I am generally calmer and more satisfied without the overwhelm factor.

I guess you take it a day at a time. I'll be 57 in a few weeks - I don't know if it's really an energy issue, I have tons of it generally - but it is more about the mental ambition and where you want to spend it. I'm still working full time (I'm home based now) but I plan to retire by somewhere around the end of next year. I will have more time then, but the question is where do I want to spend it. I am going to enroll and take the Master Gardener classes this winter - I figure it will teach me about the things I don't know much about and let me meet a lot of garden people.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

  • Posted by natal Louisiana 8b (My Page) on
    Wed, Jul 21, 10 at 10:55

Cindy, we're the same age. I would be completely overwhelmed with your situation. ;)

We live in the city on a 1/4 acre lot. Even though the front yard is pretty much maintenance free, I have a lot going on in the side and back yards. As much as I would miss what I have now I think I could be very content with something on a smaller scale. Hubby & I start contemplating that every year about this time ... a result of the constant oppressive heat, humidity, and threat of hurricanes. Retirement is still years away, but we may start taking short trips to explore other areas of the country.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I turned 57 in May. Retired 7yrs. ago this month (July 30th) after 30yrs.with the State. I'm busier now than when I worked full time. How did I take care of everything back then??? I guess when you have a vision, you'll work hard to achieve it.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Not for my yard, but yes I did when I was conscripted to design, and make my cousins front and backyard garden. That job isn't done yet. I find it fun when I'm planting and when I'm shopping for plants. But it is not so much fun when I have to do the job of building large beds from scratch, plus having to deal with someone else's budget.

And then on a visit of a friends place, she asked me for plants which I ended up planting in her newly prepared garden bed because she didn't know how to plant.

I should stop being everyone else's gardener.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Marylu,just because you retire doesn't mean you'll have more time for the garden!! Ask me how i know....LOL

I'm 72 and i spent almost 5 hours out in the garden today digging out 1 bed and prepping it for succulents and a few cacti,that i removed from another garden 2 days ago.We had them in the front,but between the neighborhood kids and their balls and all those that let their dogs and cats run loose,a lot was getting broken,and it was starting to look terrible,so i am moving them all to the backyard.

Thank goodness it wasn't too hot today,nor was the sun out.We had our may grey,june gloom and now this year we are having july sigh.It's ok with me though,i don't like the heat.

I just got out of the shower a little while ago and my legs and feet still hurt.

This gettin' old,ain't for sissies!!!!!
Kathi


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Kathi, please don't say that! I have always worked full time, even when my kids were little. So what I look forward to is being able to do what I want, when I want to do it. Not just squeeze it in between all the other demands of working and caring for a home. Gardening being one of the major things and spending more time with the grandkids the other.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Now remember, be kind to your elders :), I think I'm the oldest one here I'll be 73 in September.
Did I take on too much this summer? Of course I did, I always do, but so far it seems to have worked itself out.
Pat_tea welcome back, there's 3 of us here that share the same birthday if not the same age LOL.

I'm still plugging along doing what I love, more weeds then I used to have, I've been trying to cut back but so far it's not working. I have cut way down on the number of pots and containers, but haven't had much success cutting back on much else. I have managed to whittle my Fuchsia and Begonia collections down to a reasonable number but the Shasta Daisy and Echinacea varieties seem to be growing by leaps and bounds. Should I mention Iris, I love them too, just finished planting 19 beautiful varieties given to me by a very generous friend.
I just bought a beautiful salmon colored Agastache at the local supermarket today, Hmmmmm, now where to put it. I think when I finally hit the dust it will be with pot and trowel in hand, at least that's what I'm hoping.

I am slowing down darn it, but I still love to be out in the garden, even if some days it's just puttering around.

Annette


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I am 78 years old and love to garden,mainly flowers. I got sick in March thinking that I was allergic to something. Never had an outdoor allergy before. Suppose to see and allergist and still waiting. I am doing better. I take my Clariton and wear a mask when out and that seems to help. I am finally catching up with the weeds if not the Frost will get the rest. I hope.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Finchlover, I've think you've just dethroned me LOL. Way to go girl, if I can still get out and enjoy my garden when or if I make it to 78 I'll be a happy camper.
I know about the allergy thing it's a real pain, they can't figure out what triggers mine, several times a year I get a devil of a cough, it hits out of the blue something in the air triggers it but we haven't figured out what it is that gets me going.

Annette


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Marylu,no,no,no i didn't mean it that way.You will get to do a lot more in your gardens and whatever hobbies you like.Dh and i do what we want whenever we want and it works out well,since there is just the 2 of us the house doesn't need all the work it used to,and we clean up as we go.I vacuum just once a week now,as we have no animals either,and dusting is the same.DH does the dinner cooking and the rest of the day we eat whatever and clean up for ourselves.

He's an early bird so he's out in the gardens at daybreak,and gets a lot done.I like to sleep in,so i almost never get out there before 10:00.But i also like to go back out late afternoon after it cools down.

Lilyfinch,i do live by the ocean and it was a fluke we do as we were young and stupid when we bought this house.We were military and he was going to be deployed again and for 2 years of sea duty(he was a marine) so i said find me a house and i don't care what it looks like as long as it has 4 walls and a roof,because i'm not moving again!! We're still here 43 years later.We have an ocean view from the backyard,and can get to the beach in about 3 minutes.

It's nice having that ocean breeze coming across the canyon.and that's another plus,we have a canyon behind us so don't have to worry about neighbors in the back,and it's enviromentally protected.Guess i could say we have the great old Pacific at the tip of our toes.
Kathi


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

"Only an idiot would take this much time... "
Not at all organic kitten. Actually, only an idiot would have that many flowers and NOT find some perfectly legitimate gardening excuse to get outside and enjoy them everyday.

"And I really can enjoy anything that is growing well."
prairiemoon, I feel the same way about my yard; right now, there are huge thickets of native sunflowers, purple perilla and goldenrod that are so healthy and lush, that even though they completely cover all the "Domestic ornamentals" I've carefully planted there, it would be a sin to pull them out. "Why, those aren't weeds, they're spontaneous cultivars".

Of course, the most glorious patch of "volunteers" is the Johnson Grass. Every year I *think* I've got them all dug out, and by June, they have managed to fill in a 6 by 10 foot section of what's supposed to be a flowerbed. Right now, they're at least 6 feet tall, and it's not likely I'll be out there trying to remove them any time before say, November. I just call it a "theme garden". (in this case, the African Savannah) I figure, if ornamental grass is good enough for Piet Oudolf , it's good enough for me.


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

I go back and forth on all this - I will be 66 end of the week. I just got through 2 years of intensive careing for my mother who was bedridden and living with us. The gardens got a lick and a promise - hubby did most of the work tho. Mom passed in February so I thought now it is my time to devote 24/7 in the gardens - started out great then we hit this 50+ days of Heat Indexes of 100-110 and no end in sight. I found I really can't take the heat like I use to so the gardens suffer again.

I will always have flowers and always have more than I can handle but that being said yes I am going to scale back some - add more shrubs (hydrangeas, viburnums, camellias, ect) and go for lower maintenance. I love starting my annuals from seed and taking note of what is doing good in this oppressive heat - I have some real standouts - blackeyes susans, megellan zinnias, vinca, caladiums and coleus. Fussy plants are getting the heave-ho.

This has been a great thread - I had no idea there were so many of us 'seniors'. It was very theraputic reading other gardeners responses because I was thinking I was losing interest because I wanted to scale back and was feeling bad about 'old age' setting in -. I was feeling that life was passing me by. In the last 10 years I retired, moved to a different state, lost a husband of 38 yrs, moved my mother in with me, met and married a wonderful man - now it is time to garden :) thanks for listening ......

Lynne


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Am bringing this forward, thought it was a good thread, we're all getting there!!


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RE: Did anyone else take on too much this summer???

Thank you for bringing this thread up. I just got rid of most of my front lawn and I now have my eye on the parking strip...but...how do you go on vacation and leave all your plants? just moved to water meters in my town-how expensive is this going to be?
appreciate the fact that others have been down this road and are willing to share their journey,


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