Monday, April 16, 2012

April Bloom Day: 101, Tornado's, Flu and Landscaping

Corner Hell Strip- - (LtoR) Viola(front),Saponaria ocymoides(soapwort),Salvia 'Rapsody in Blue', and Aethionema schistosim (Persian stonecress).
What is the title suppose to mean you ask? Good question.
101: this is post number 101.
Tornado's: As many of you who live in the central plains know, this is tornado alley.
Flu: stomach flu.
Landscaping: I provide free landscaping services to my sons.
Story Line:
All last week my son has been communicating that he wanted to take me up on an offer to add a perennial bed to his new house in Edmond (near Oklahoma City). I responded with some regret as I knew that the rain had been dropping there all week. And as some of you many know the soil there is nasty red clay. It is so bad that Acme brick has a Edmond quarry near there manufacturing plant that they make brick out of. We're talking sorry soil! Anyways my plan was to add compost from the local municipal recycle plant into the bed. When I drove to the compost plant on Thursday it was closed due to weather! Weather! Come on. Well it probably turned out to be a mixed blessing. Therefore I went to plan B which was purchase compost in Edmond and take tiller and tools along to amend bed.
Friday night finally came around and off we go. As we were leaving we heard we were in a tornado watch. This warning was not a normal warning, as words were using such as total destruction, loss of life possible if not in a tornado shelter. Whoa, never heard that before. (Come to find out the the national weather bureau has stepped up theie warnings as many people were becoming complacence when tornado's never became real. They later replied that this saved lives this weekend as they knew the weather conditions were going to be severe. The tornado's in Kansas were called a month's worth of tornado's in one day.)
We arrived and my son and I immediately went to work removing the builders applied Bermuda sod with mesh netting. This allows the sod to stay together during application. We worked into the night under the street light shadows and completed step one. Not a easy task as the mesh was rolled into the clay soil and was difficult to remove. The wind was blowing 40 mph along with interspersing rain.
That night we were watching the storms on tv radar move through Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas. The tornado siren went off at 2;30 a.m. Freak out! Went to the inner closet until the storm had passed. Missed it as the funnel never touched ground. Needless to say it was hard to sleep.
The next day we went after bulk compost. None to be found. So we added two yards of amended topsoil and elevated the bed in berms to improve drainage.
Perennials (seedling volunteers from my garden) were placed for review. Rudbeckia hirta, fulgida, Salvia fairnancea, Salvia  guaranitica 'black and blue', Stipa tenuissima, Echinacea purpurea, Gallardia, Napeta 'walkers low', and Foeniculum vulgare (bronze fennel) were added. I finished planting them and then we added shredded hardwood mulch. Done. Then it rained and rained. Then I got the stomach flu. I had not regurgitated since college ( many, many moons ago). Up and down all night.
That night Wichita, Kansas was hit by multiple tornado's. Wichita is only 40 miles from our home. The warnings were well advised. Our home was spared any damage.
 As always the 15th of month is garden bloggers bloom day where bloggers meet and share their blooms at May Dream Gardens. Image above is Yucca rigida, Verbascum (common mullien), and Linum (blue flax).
 Saliva 'Rapsody in Blue' and Aethionema schistosim (Persian stonecress)

As always, have a great gardening season.





30 comments:

  1. Wow. .THAT was a busy weekend!! Glad you were spared from danger!! A scary weekend indeed!! Gardener on Sherlock Street visited our place on the prairie this weekend and we enjoyed some quality time in our basement while waiting on a sighted funnel to pass our house as well!! Thankfully, we were spared as well!! So sweet of you to help your son. .He'll think of you everytime he drives up from now on!

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    1. I didn't know there was quality time in the basement(we have a root cellar,lol). Thanks for stopping by.

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  2. I am so glad that you all escaped those tornadoes. I saw them on the news and it was so scary. It is hard work starting a new flowerbed. I love the shape of that one and it is going to be lovely when it grows in. Your Salvia and Blue Flax looks beautiful Gregg.

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  3. Everything looks lovely and how lucky is your son to have dad come to the rescue and help with his new garden bed.

    Cher Sunray Gardens

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    1. Enjoyed doing it and I thing my son did also.

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  4. That hell strip looks heavenly!

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  5. Only a true gardener would be out there planting things that could any moment be sucked up into a tornado! Lovely blooms and Happy Bloom Day!!

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  6. Wow you have been busy! Your hard work in your son's garden will certainly pay off. It will look great when it all grows in. Glad to hear that y'all were spared the tornado. They are frightening. We are at the end of tornado alley and get our share of crazy weather. We have made numerous trips to our basement over the years. Your hell strip looks fab!

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  7. Sounds like a busy weekend.

    Glad the storms missed you. A large one came within a few hundred feet of our daughter's house in Argonia. They were at the church, in a storm shelter....no basement at their house. No damage for them, but others in town were not so lucky.
    Welcome to Kansas to them....!!
    Growing up in the Dallas area, our daughter has spent some time in the center house bath, while sirens went off. None ever came that close, though.

    Now, about your 'hell strip'.....how is it so full and blooming this early? We're way down here, and still don't have a lot blooming. Maybe, when my garden grows up, it'll look good like everybody else's.

    Take care....

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  8. You have been busy, but the result is absolutely lovely. I like your plant selections...perfect and colorful!

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  9. Greggo, that was a very exciting weekend and post. Sorry about the stomach flu. I thank God for all who were spared from the tornadoes, and I weep for those who were not. It is too sad. Sigh. On the other hand, I loved hearing your story about following ministry to CO. I want to read that story sometime. I think God puts these dreams in our hearts, those pearls we hold especially dear. Lots of money isn't important in the least, but seeing a dream come true is fab.

    Does your son blog? He's not far from me. I wish you and your wife could meet and have coffee sometime when you're near.~~Dee

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  10. Hell strip? Obviously a misnomer!

    Your garden is looking gorgeous already - I am continuously amazed at how much you have packed in, because it keeps going and going and going all summer long.

    Had to smile at your errand to establish a perennial bed at your son's new home - I did the same last month at my daughter's new place in Ft. Walton Beach, FL. My affiliated adventure was having my flight down cancelled, with no reschedule available for 3 days; my solution was to rent a small car and drive down instead! I think I'd rather have had my extra adventure than your stomach flu!

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  11. Sounds like a work out getting that bed ready. Those plants will look great there.

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  12. I'm glad your story had a happy ending although it sounds like it was a little scary and uncomfortable in the middle. Your hellstrip looks great and your son's is well on its way to perfection. Hopefully the storms are a thing of the past now.

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  13. If that's what hell looks like, sign me up! It's a great patch of calming colors. I'm glad you weren't hit by the recent storms. Tornadoes...they scare me. I'll gladly live in earthquake country if it means we don't have to worry about anything more than the occasional waterspout off the coast.

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  14. Hope you can get some rest this week . . . sheesh! Close call with the tornado - glad everything's ok.

    Nice job on the new garden - your son is lucky to have your help with it - it's going to be so pretty.

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  15. Wow, you are a nice dad! Sorry you had the stomach flu. That's no fun, but especially this time of year. Darn high winds and tornadoes!

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  16. How terrific that your son wants your garden help! But yikes Greggo, tornadoes seem like hysterical dinosaurs or something, out of control power. How totally terrifying. Good job not getting shipped to Oz.

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  17. Well let me first say, your corner hell strip is very pretty right now! I love it's "softness" and cool colors mixed together. Next, I'll say you are a heck of a Dad and a real trooper to stay focused on the project with all of that going on. It sounds as if your work paid off though and when you were done it rained to help settle the new plants in! Glad you and yours are o.k. and escaped the tornados.

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  18. Wow! Good job! Lucky son and I'm glad for you that your home wasn't in the direct line of the tornado. I admire your engery too! Christina

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  19. You are reminding me of what I don't miss from living in Norman OK for 4 years! That soil...yes, great for brick! Nice blooms there in KS...not looking like Hades at your place, but sorry to hear about all that severe weather nearby.

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  20. I bet your gladd that time is over with. How lucky your son is to have such a creative father. And you truly are

    With All That I Am
    Carrie "Forrest"

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  21. Sounds like you should stay out of Oklahoma during tornado season! Glad there weren't any touchdowns around your son's home. I hope you're feeling better. The flu is a nasty thing to endure. But - your son's bed looks great!! We have that same red brick soil. It's not pretty. And removing sod is never easy. Sounds like this sod was a bit harder than usual! A lot of work - I'm certain your son appreciates you. Nice that he wants to garden, too. Your hell strip looks divine!

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  22. I am really glad your house and garden were spared the ravages of a tornado, but sorry your stomach was not spared the flu. Happy GBBD anyway.

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  23. Oh wow, busy boy! There is nothing hellish about your hell strip...its beautiful! Love your plant combo's. You have inspired me to try this grouping in my side garden, it really works so well together, love the Salvia..great job!! Hope you are feeling better =)

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  24. Yikes...that sounds like a heinous weekend! If it's any consolation at all, the parking strip shots are top-notch...absolutely gorgeous!

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  25. What a weekend! We had sirens go off, too, because conditions were favorable for tornadoes forming. It used to be that the sirens only went off if there were tornadoes spotted. They better be careful, or people will decide not to take shelter when the sirens go off.

    I hope your son's flowers are doing well.

    I want to try to grow flax again. I planted a few seeds a week or so ago, but today, saw that some are blooming here already. I hope the seeds come up anyway. Maybe I'll get a couple plants again.

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  26. I am very pleased to see your informative blog and the knowledge you have shared of the landscaping process is just amazing, I have book marked your blog and want to make my own web portal for Landscaping Virginia like this blog and want to share on some unique ideas for designing the garden and also want to share some tips to maintain the gardens beauty .

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  27. I love to do landscaping and your post is nice i should say you are doing a nice landscaping work.

    Landscape Design Toronto

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Thanks for leaving any comments, they are always welcomed. Sorry I had to add word verification as spam was becoming a huge problem. Greggo,