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interests / rec.gardens / Re: (Wild)flower Garden

SubjectAuthor
* (Wild)flower GardenDan Purgert
+- Re: (Wild)flower Gardensongbird
+* Re: (Wild)flower Gardensongbird
|`* Re: (Wild)flower GardenDan Purgert
| +- Re: (Wild)flower Gardensongbird
| `* Re: (Wild)flower Gardensongbird
|  `* Re: (Wild)flower GardenDan Purgert
|   `* Re: (Wild)flower Gardensongbird
|    `- Re: (Wild)flower GardenDan Purgert
`* Re: (Wild)flower Gardenazigni
 `- Re: (Wild)flower Gardensongbird

1
(Wild)flower Garden

<slrnuji8do.2f4.dan@djph.net>

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From: dan...@djph.net (Dan Purgert)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Wed, 25 Oct 2023 14:08:33 -0000 (UTC)
Organization: A noiseless patient Spider
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 by: Dan Purgert - Wed, 25 Oct 2023 14:08 UTC

Can't remember if I'd mentioned at some point in the past that I was
planting (mostly state-native) wildflowers in a few places around the
yard.

I obviously did (lots of) something(s) wrong, as not a whole lot came
up, in terms of variety (and have a few entirely bare patches too).

In the front, about the only thing that came up well were the Cosmos,
with maybe 1 or 2 Zinnia or Coreopsis plants that also came up to fill
in the lower spots (and basically none of the "early season" flowers
came up at all).

Think for next year, I need to keep a better eye on keeping the garden
watered (especially in the spring/summer til things get established).
Maybe some additional fertilizer, or a mulch or something to protect the
seeds from birds as well.

--
|_|O|_|
|_|_|O| Github: https://github.com/dpurgert
|O|O|O| PGP: DDAB 23FB 19FA 7D85 1CC1 E067 6D65 70E5 4CE7 2860

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<ucmn0k-m8b.ln1@anthive.com>

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From: songb...@anthive.com (songbird)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Wed, 25 Oct 2023 10:47:26 -0400
Organization: the little wild kingdom
Lines: 55
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 by: songbird - Wed, 25 Oct 2023 14:47 UTC

Dan Purgert wrote:
> Can't remember if I'd mentioned at some point in the past that I was
> planting (mostly state-native) wildflowers in a few places around the
> yard.
>
> I obviously did (lots of) something(s) wrong, as not a whole lot came
> up, in terms of variety (and have a few entirely bare patches too).
>
> In the front, about the only thing that came up well were the Cosmos,
> with maybe 1 or 2 Zinnia or Coreopsis plants that also came up to fill
> in the lower spots (and basically none of the "early season" flowers
> came up at all).
>
> Think for next year, I need to keep a better eye on keeping the garden
> watered (especially in the spring/summer til things get established).
> Maybe some additional fertilizer, or a mulch or something to protect the
> seeds from birds as well.

when planting wild flowers it is often easier to start
them in pots so you can keep an eye on them and get them
established well before planting them out. this works
even better for perennials.

with the hot and dry weather we had a lot of starts
did not do great until the rains finally came along
later in the season. by then if you had put down
seeds some of those would have gotten eaten by animals
or failed.

other aspects of starting a wildflower patch is to
remember that wildflowers are often opportunistic and
will do better with some disturbed poor soil and not
much other competition. if you're trying to get them
going in regular garden soil or more fertile areas they
can be crowded out by the faster growing grasses or
other weed species so you have to keep an eye out for
their seedlings and then keep some space around them
clear enough that they can grow.

and then to complicate matters even further, some
species will do better when interplanted with some
kind of nursery crop. each species can be different.

in general i do not recommend ever planting a mix
of wildflowers because i've been severely burned by
those an had them introducing really persistent ones
that are pests - had to waste a lot of hours weeding
that i'd otherwise would have avoided.

three i'd be glad to have never introduced,
speedwells (small blue flowers), forget me nots
and mouse-eared-chickweed.

songbird

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

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From: songb...@anthive.com (songbird)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Wed, 25 Oct 2023 11:03:35 -0400
Organization: the little wild kingdom
Lines: 18
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 by: songbird - Wed, 25 Oct 2023 15:03 UTC

Dan Purgert wrote:
....
> Think for next year, I need to keep a better eye on keeping the garden
> watered (especially in the spring/summer til things get established).
> Maybe some additional fertilizer, or a mulch or something to protect the
> seeds from birds as well.

as a post script, cosmos are an annual and do well but
they also are best planted into some disturbed soil where
you want them as compared to letting them try to come up
willy nilly. they are great bee fodder for later in the
summer and into the fall until the frosts take them out.
it's a great way to do a census on your native bee
populations to have a patch of them and to stand there
and watch to see which bees visit.

songbird

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<slrnujisuc.2f4.dan@djph.net>

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From: dan...@djph.net (Dan Purgert)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Wed, 25 Oct 2023 19:58:46 -0000 (UTC)
Organization: A noiseless patient Spider
Lines: 37
Message-ID: <slrnujisuc.2f4.dan@djph.net>
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 by: Dan Purgert - Wed, 25 Oct 2023 19:58 UTC

On 2023-10-25, songbird wrote:
> Dan Purgert wrote:
> ...
>> Think for next year, I need to keep a better eye on keeping the garden
>> watered (especially in the spring/summer til things get established).
>> Maybe some additional fertilizer, or a mulch or something to protect the
>> seeds from birds as well.
>
> as a post script, cosmos are an annual and do well but
> they also are best planted into some disturbed soil where
> you want them as compared to letting them try to come up
> willy nilly. they are great bee fodder for later in the
> summer and into the fall until the frosts take them out.
> it's a great way to do a census on your native bee
> populations to have a patch of them and to stand there
> and watch to see which bees visit.

I (visually) caught a few bumblebees in the flowers this year, as well
as what looked like possibly some wild honeybees. So hooray there.
Especially considering most (all) of the houses here are otherwise
barren wastelands of "suburbia gardens".

None of the flowers are / should be perennial (well at least over here
in Zone 5 ... but then again, winters have been getting pretty mild,
which is bad) -- but with that being said, they should be able to
self-seed as well (if they've not all already become bird food :) ).

I'm not too worried about them migrating, when I looked up the mix of
seeds I bought, none of them were said to creep or have wind-blown
seeds. That being said, I fully expect animals or other insects may
carry them about, but more power to the native plants!

--
|_|O|_|
|_|_|O| Github: https://github.com/dpurgert
|O|O|O| PGP: DDAB 23FB 19FA 7D85 1CC1 E067 6D65 70E5 4CE7 2860

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

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From: azi...@yahoo.com (azigni)
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
References: <slrnuji8do.2f4.dan@djph.net>
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 by: azigni - Wed, 25 Oct 2023 22:26 UTC

On Wed, 25 Oct 2023 14:08:33 -0000 (UTC), Dan Purgert wrote:

> Can't remember if I'd mentioned...snipped...Maybe some additional
>fertilizer, or a mulch or something to protect the seeds from birds as
>well.

I thought I had an epiphany this year. I have a some volunteer flowers
and grasses in the front yard that are turning to seed. I clipped the
seeds, mixed them in a 5 gallon bucket, and spread them about in the back
yard.

The birds loved them!

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<9j4q0k-992.ln1@anthive.com>

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From: songb...@anthive.com (songbird)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Thu, 26 Oct 2023 09:02:01 -0400
Organization: the little wild kingdom
Lines: 36
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<slrnujisuc.2f4.dan@djph.net>
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 by: songbird - Thu, 26 Oct 2023 13:02 UTC

Dan Purgert wrote:
....
> I'm not too worried about them migrating, when I looked up the mix of
> seeds I bought, none of them were said to creep or have wind-blown
> seeds. That being said, I fully expect animals or other insects may
> carry them about, but more power to the native plants!

yes, we just mow what little is left of the grassy
areas (but there's not much any more) and that self-
selects for the plants that can survive that kind of
treatment. we don't fertilize or water those areas
either. interestingly enough, with minimal care it
grows really well. the bunnies come along and eat
most of the weeds out of it and it looks pretty nice
if kept regularly mowed during the times it rains.
we also mow pretty high and that helps keep weeds
down.

we're in a similar zone (mid-Michigan) so the
winters do have some effect on weeds and wildflowers.

i have some pinks which wander around and i always
leave those to flower when they pop up in various
gardens. then there are all the other hundreds of
various weeds that show up and wind blown ones too
which this past season was really bad due to the
field to the south not being farmed any more so we
had a literal tumble weed invasion of grasses in all
the vegetable gardens and i had many hours of extra
weeding to get those out of there. i'm hoping this
fall it doesn't happen again. so far it seems to
be going much better - but a high wind storm may
change that so we'll see how it goes. :)

songbird

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<ln4q0k-992.ln1@anthive.com>

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From: songb...@anthive.com (songbird)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Thu, 26 Oct 2023 09:04:21 -0400
Organization: the little wild kingdom
Lines: 25
Message-ID: <ln4q0k-992.ln1@anthive.com>
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 by: songbird - Thu, 26 Oct 2023 13:04 UTC

azigni wrote:
> On Wed, 25 Oct 2023 14:08:33 -0000 (UTC), Dan Purgert wrote:
>
>> Can't remember if I'd mentioned...snipped...Maybe some additional
>>fertilizer, or a mulch or something to protect the seeds from birds as
>>well.
>
> I thought I had an epiphany this year. I have a some volunteer flowers
> and grasses in the front yard that are turning to seed. I clipped the
> seeds, mixed them in a 5 gallon bucket, and spread them about in the back
> yard.
>
> The birds loved them!

:)

we do not go out of our way to feed the birds but we do
keep birdbaths for them and the birds are always around.
i'm liking this arrangement since it minimizes pests and
the birds have to forage for bugs in the gardens. keeping
a regular water supply available also helps prevent some
damage to food crops.

songbird

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<c54q0k-992.ln1@anthive.com>

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From: songb...@anthive.com (songbird)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Thu, 26 Oct 2023 08:54:36 -0400
Organization: the little wild kingdom
Lines: 66
Message-ID: <c54q0k-992.ln1@anthive.com>
References: <slrnuji8do.2f4.dan@djph.net> <7bnn0k-bdb.ln1@anthive.com>
<slrnujisuc.2f4.dan@djph.net>
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 by: songbird - Thu, 26 Oct 2023 12:54 UTC

Dan Purgert wrote:
....
> I (visually) caught a few bumblebees in the flowers this year, as well
> as what looked like possibly some wild honeybees. So hooray there.
> Especially considering most (all) of the houses here are otherwise
> barren wastelands of "suburbia gardens".

one thing that also works well for me as a bee
food is onion flowers. i try to get some going
each season and leave them to overwinter so they
are coming up and blooming in the spring. i
usually see a lot of the native large and also the
smaller bumblebees on them. not this past season
though. it was so dry the native bees were mostly
absent until it started raining in the mid-summer
and then they were all over any flowers we had
(including the onions).

bunching onions bloom earlier than the bulbing
onions.

> None of the flowers are / should be perennial (well at least over here
> in Zone 5 ... but then again, winters have been getting pretty mild,
> which is bad) -- but with that being said, they should be able to
> self-seed as well (if they've not all already become bird food :) ).
>
> I'm not too worried about them migrating, when I looked up the mix of
> seeds I bought, none of them were said to creep or have wind-blown
> seeds. That being said, I fully expect animals or other insects may
> carry them about, but more power to the native plants!

well, i hate to be paranoid about this but the
seed mixes we used had some weed seeds in them and
so it pays to keep an eye out on the patch for any
pests that may have tagged along.

heading off a major weed infestation is really
easy if you can get the first few that appear before
they have a chance to drop seeds or spread further.

we have some other wonderful weeds that show up at
times from the birds moving seeds around (poison ivy
and thistles being the two toughest ones to get rid
of if i don't catch them early).

right now i have about 1200 square feet of thistles
next to our property that the neighbor had start in
his farm field that they could not ever get rid of so
i've been mowing it really short until i could talk
to the neighbor about what they're going to do. and
now it looks like they'll take care of it as part of
putting that field into an environmental easement so
i'm just going to keep mowing it short until they can
deal with it. best approach for the environment is
to manually remove it (plow it deep and then rake
through with a cultivator to remove the roots and dry
those in the sun to kill them off), but that's a lot
of work so they'll probably spray it a few times and
then i can spot weed it after that if any more show
up. i will have to do that anyways. if you keep
after any sprouts that come up they will eventually
give up.

songbird

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<slrnujn54c.2f4.dan@djph.net>

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From: dan...@djph.net (Dan Purgert)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Fri, 27 Oct 2023 10:43:02 -0000 (UTC)
Organization: A noiseless patient Spider
Lines: 60
Message-ID: <slrnujn54c.2f4.dan@djph.net>
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 by: Dan Purgert - Fri, 27 Oct 2023 10:43 UTC

On 2023-10-26, songbird wrote:
> Dan Purgert wrote:
> ...
>> I (visually) caught a few bumblebees in the flowers this year, as well
>> as what looked like possibly some wild honeybees. So hooray there.
>> Especially considering most (all) of the houses here are otherwise
>> barren wastelands of "suburbia gardens".
>
> one thing that also works well for me as a bee
> food is onion flowers. i try to get some going
> each season and leave them to overwinter so they
> are coming up and blooming in the spring. i

Oh indeed! I've got a little patch of chives in the one corner that are
starting to spread out just a little bit. They're pretty when they
flower (and, y'know, taste pretty alright too :) )

> [...]
> well, i hate to be paranoid about this but the
> seed mixes we used had some weed seeds in them and
> so it pays to keep an eye out on the patch for any
> pests that may have tagged along.

The batch I got was from a local (like literally 20 minutes away) seed
house that specializes in the state-native wildflowers. So what came up
was pretty solid (if only more did). Granted I can't say that the
thistle and other unwanted plants I fight with in the garden *weren't*
in those packets :)

>
> heading off a major weed infestation is really
> easy if you can get the first few that appear before
> they have a chance to drop seeds or spread further.

Well, I mean, many would call my wildflowers "weeds" (and til they
started flowering, things looked pretty bad).

>
> we have some other wonderful weeds that show up at
> times from the birds moving seeds around (poison ivy
> and thistles being the two toughest ones to get rid
> of if i don't catch them early).

INDEED. Thistles (or other spiky things) are the bane of my gardens.
I'm going to have to figure out "something" for the shadier garden --
the weeds pick up there fine, but it's hard to get back there without
squishing what I want to keep, so maybe some pavers / stepping stones to
make the path look nice...

> [...] if you keep
> after any sprouts that come up they will eventually
> give up.

There's only "so much life" in a root (etc) afterall ...

--
|_|O|_|
|_|_|O| Github: https://github.com/dpurgert
|O|O|O| PGP: DDAB 23FB 19FA 7D85 1CC1 E067 6D65 70E5 4CE7 2860

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

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From: songb...@anthive.com (songbird)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Fri, 27 Oct 2023 08:23:45 -0400
Organization: the little wild kingdom
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 by: songbird - Fri, 27 Oct 2023 12:23 UTC

Dan Purgert wrote:
> On 2023-10-26, songbird wrote:
>> Dan Purgert wrote:
>> ...
>>> I (visually) caught a few bumblebees in the flowers this year, as well
>>> as what looked like possibly some wild honeybees. So hooray there.
>>> Especially considering most (all) of the houses here are otherwise
>>> barren wastelands of "suburbia gardens".
>>
>> one thing that also works well for me as a bee
>> food is onion flowers. i try to get some going
>> each season and leave them to overwinter so they
>> are coming up and blooming in the spring. i
>
> Oh indeed! I've got a little patch of chives in the one corner that are
> starting to spread out just a little bit. They're pretty when they
> flower (and, y'know, taste pretty alright too :) )

i've had to remove a few hundred square feet of
chives from a patch that started as chives scattered
to try to deter the chipmunks. oy... the smell of
chive roots is gag inducing to me. the other patch
which we kept going until last year we've been able
to just mow and the chives are being gradually
replaced by grasses/weeds - much easier on me as
long as the weeds are not spreading too fast i can
control that edge just fine. the chives were able
to keep the grass out for the most part until we
started mowing them back.

>> [...]
>> well, i hate to be paranoid about this but the
>> seed mixes we used had some weed seeds in them and
>> so it pays to keep an eye out on the patch for any
>> pests that may have tagged along.
>
> The batch I got was from a local (like literally 20 minutes away) seed
> house that specializes in the state-native wildflowers. So what came up
> was pretty solid (if only more did). Granted I can't say that the
> thistle and other unwanted plants I fight with in the garden *weren't*
> in those packets :)

it's a tough weed to get rid of, but gotten early
and often helps a great deal. keep at it! :)

>> heading off a major weed infestation is really
>> easy if you can get the first few that appear before
>> they have a chance to drop seeds or spread further.
>
> Well, I mean, many would call my wildflowers "weeds" (and til they
> started flowering, things looked pretty bad).

ha! :) you don't have a town ordinance against
having tall weeds? we're out in the country enough
that isn't an issue at all.

>> we have some other wonderful weeds that show up at
>> times from the birds moving seeds around (poison ivy
>> and thistles being the two toughest ones to get rid
>> of if i don't catch them early).
>
> INDEED. Thistles (or other spiky things) are the bane of my gardens.
> I'm going to have to figure out "something" for the shadier garden --
> the weeds pick up there fine, but it's hard to get back there without
> squishing what I want to keep, so maybe some pavers / stepping stones to
> make the path look nice...

i've got a patch of those on the neighboring property
so if i don't keep them mowed short they'll have millions
of seeds. hopefully that gets taken care of the next few
years. on our property there's a few small thistle
patches but they get overgrown and i weed them out as i
can get to them if they try to spread. rhubarb does a
reasonable job of crowding out a lot of things but we've
had so little rain the past few years it's not doing the
job as well as it was before.

>> [...] if you keep
>> after any sprouts that come up they will eventually
>> give up.
>
> There's only "so much life" in a root (etc) afterall ...

yes, especially if you don't let it recharge. :)

songbird

Re: (Wild)flower Garden

<slrnujnoli.2f4.dan@djph.net>

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From: dan...@djph.net (Dan Purgert)
Newsgroups: rec.gardens
Subject: Re: (Wild)flower Garden
Date: Fri, 27 Oct 2023 16:16:27 -0000 (UTC)
Organization: A noiseless patient Spider
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 by: Dan Purgert - Fri, 27 Oct 2023 16:16 UTC

On 2023-10-27, songbird wrote:
> Dan Purgert wrote:
>> On 2023-10-26, songbird wrote:
>>> Dan Purgert wrote:
>>> ...
>>>> I (visually) caught a few bumblebees in the flowers this year, as well
>>>> as what looked like possibly some wild honeybees. So hooray there.
>>>> Especially considering most (all) of the houses here are otherwise
>>>> barren wastelands of "suburbia gardens".
>>>
>>> one thing that also works well for me as a bee
>>> food is onion flowers. i try to get some going
>>> each season and leave them to overwinter so they
>>> are coming up and blooming in the spring. i
>>
>> Oh indeed! I've got a little patch of chives in the one corner that are
>> starting to spread out just a little bit. They're pretty when they
>> flower (and, y'know, taste pretty alright too :) )
>
> i've had to remove a few hundred square feet of
> chives from a patch that started as chives scattered
> to try to deter the chipmunks. oy... the smell of
> chive roots is gag inducing to me. the other patch
> which we kept going until last year we've been able
> to just mow and the chives are being gradually
> replaced by grasses/weeds - much easier on me as
> long as the weeds are not spreading too fast i can
> control that edge just fine. the chives were able
> to keep the grass out for the most part until we
> started mowing them back.

Yeah, I'll have to see what comes up next year / where its trying to
migrate off to (and y'know, stop it)
>
>
>>> [...]
>>> well, i hate to be paranoid about this but the
>>> seed mixes we used had some weed seeds in them and
>>> so it pays to keep an eye out on the patch for any
>>> pests that may have tagged along.
>>
>> The batch I got was from a local (like literally 20 minutes away) seed
>> house that specializes in the state-native wildflowers. So what came up
>> was pretty solid (if only more did). Granted I can't say that the
>> thistle and other unwanted plants I fight with in the garden *weren't*
>> in those packets :)
>
> it's a tough weed to get rid of, but gotten early
> and often helps a great deal. keep at it! :)

Quite so! It doesn't help that the gardens here, while "manicured(tm)"
when we bought the house were previously maintained to an unknown
(albeit probably poor) degree of typical "suburban garden(tm)" in the
front yard -- mostly all lawn and then some barren "garden(tm)" of
ornamental non-flowering plants (or maybe a few shrubs that flower
immediately in spring, but are otherwise crap).

Actually, I was extremely surprised that the impatients I threw into the
little planter-box on top of my water barrel did amazingly well --
started out as nothing more than 8 kinda scraggly looking plugs (so
MAYBE 16 plants, tops) and basically overflowed the planter by the time
they finally died back (note to self, winterize that this weekend)

>
>
>>> heading off a major weed infestation is really
>>> easy if you can get the first few that appear before
>>> they have a chance to drop seeds or spread further.
>>
>> Well, I mean, many would call my wildflowers "weeds" (and til they
>> started flowering, things looked pretty bad).
>
> ha! :) you don't have a town ordinance against
> having tall weeds? we're out in the country enough
> that isn't an issue at all.

We do, technically, but nobody complained, and then the mid/late summer
blooms probably helped a lot in that regard ("ohh, they're supposed to
be big..."). It also helped that I talked to the neighbors on this side
of the street that we were trying to attract butterflies (and their
little kids fairies ).

What I really need to happen is next spring get more early-blooming
flowers (even if it means plug trays or similar to get them going) so
that there's a little more there earlier on. Also, plan out pavers /
pathways so I can maintain things from both sides (as the garden is
otherwise too deep).

Think I'm actually getting somewhere in a "forward" direction instead of
it just being hopes on a piece of paper :)

--
|_|O|_|
|_|_|O| Github: https://github.com/dpurgert
|O|O|O| PGP: DDAB 23FB 19FA 7D85 1CC1 E067 6D65 70E5 4CE7 2860


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