Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Wednesday* Workday - The Cutting Garden

Seeds from Stokes and Renee's Gardens and marker stakes.
Thanks to the lovely Belinda (Wild Acre) and her series on how to make a cutting garden, I have set that as my number one project for this fall.

I've identified an area that needs to be cleaned out and re-purposed as a cutting garden, but decided that maybe it's too small for the seeds I want to plant, so laid out a second area in the "bowling alley" - that long, straight side yard with which we have never been particularly excited.  It gets lots of morning sun, but water will be a problem.  The area I laid out is bounded by the camellia and a small Japanese maple tree - about 25 feet long and four feet wide.  If I do get flowers the color will be seen from the street, but not the detail.  It will add a layer of color to the side yard.

Using the instructions from Belinda's friend Ben, I set out this afternoon to plant the hardy annuals I bought ...  Nigella (Love in the Mist) in pink
Grass killed, dug out, raked with plant food and humus added.
'Mulberry Rose', blue 'Persian Violet' and white 'Bridal Veil', poppies 'French Flounce' and 'Shirley', stock (multi-colored) and larkspur ('French Alouette', 'Earl Grey', 'Cannes Rose Stripe' and 'Cannes Deep Blue'). 

In fairness I should say that Belinda did not recommend growing larkspur, but it's one of those flowers that I have wanted to grow since I was a teenager.  I think I first met it in a Nancy Drew mystery, something like "The Mystery on Larkspur Lane".  Have bought seeds several times, but always discovered too late that they should have been planted in the fall - not this time!

I followed Ben's directions: watered first, marked the rows with sand, and then watered it all again.  Ben didn't tell me to put in tags, but I did it anyway!

Rows marked with sand and labeled.
I can hardly wait to see what comes up!

While I only used about 2/3 of the seeds, I am not sure where I will find enough space to plant the rest of what I already have.  In addition to these, I have plenty of seeds for spring - scabiosa, cosmos, cornflowers, and sweet peas, plus astrantia and zinnias that are ordered, but have not yet arrived.  Had planned to do a second planting in a couple of weeks, but now I am thinking of waiting until spring and just mixing all of the leftover seed together and broadcasing it - but I don't have a clue where!

So, now we wait.  I'll let them come up in a couple of weeks and get started, then they follow Persephone to Hades and sleep for the winter, to re-emerge in March ... hopefully with flowers!  This is so much fun!

*I know it's only Tuesday, but couldn't wait until tomorrow! 


  1. Having a garden with veggies is good for the body, but flowers are good for the soul. Sounds like it will be lovely, come Spring. I am looking forward to pictures.

  2. Webb - I love your green thumb. and you of course.

    Got your message. Please don't worry about the recent tone of my posts. Declan died last year and was a part of my extended family. Anna's son Jake passed away last week, and I will grieve the loss of his life - but did not know him the same way. There have been other deaths this past year as well and I just believe that is life.

    I love the garden and the hope you always grow. You are a soulful person on every level. Thank you :-) I am good. Miss you guys - but i am just fine - if not a bit behind ;-)

  3. All soooo exciting Webb! About the netting, in the Uk this only needs to be put in place in spring, when the plants start to romp away. Over winter my seedlings just look like little weeds, only an inch or two high. Your cornflowers would do even better from an autumn seeding, they really get a good headstart and are tough little blighters! Really hope it all works out brilliantly, I feel vaguely responsible in some small way!!:) Gardening is such a learning curve I find, and the only way to really learn what will grow well in your particular location and soil, is to get the dirt under your fingernails! x

  4. OMG I almost missed this.

    I'm jealous of your planning and plotting, so to speak.

    As ever I haven't done a single thing except weed.

    But I still have time and you are inspiring....

    xo Jane

  5. I can't wait to see it when it sprouts! :-)

  6. I too have been inspired by Belindas post and instead of my usual spring sowing, as I can't wait :), am doing it now, the idea being stronger plants, good luck with yours x

  7. Thanks for the encouragement, everyone! Have done only perennials for years, so this is going to be a fun experience and may rock my world. Hang with me!

    Kiren, thanks for checking in. Glad all is well.