I decided to take an inventory of what has or is going well in my garden, and what is problematic:
TRIUMPH: I have succeeded in luring in birds to my garden. I have shrikes, grackles, doves and a woodpecker (seen in the bottom picture, third branch up on the right). I'm not sure what the bird is below. It doesn't appear to be the shrike that regularly visits now.
TRIUMPH: I saw my first snake in the yard today. I would like to have a black snake or some sort of garden snake around here to help control the spiders and bugs.
TRIBULATION: I got a splinter under my nail while gardening, and it will probably be there for awhile. There's no way to get it out.
TRIUMPH: I took another glance behind the shed today (which is pictured in the header of this blog), and found that at some point in the last month the wind got strong enough to knock over the work table back there.
That's not what's the "triumph". What's good about that is that it allowed me to get a better view of the area back there. I found out that there appears to be a sink or washtub back there, although I can't be certain whether it is connected to water. I can see a hose in the image as well, and it almost seems it may be connected to the tub?
Also I could see that there is a wooden "bin" built on to the side of the shed, I think. I thought I saw something like that the other day, when looking at the side of the shed from the front. (That's difficult to see, as there is a huge bougainvillea and banana trees blocking access to the right side of the shed.) So I don't know whether there may be anything in that "bin".
Then I also noticed that there is a ladder hooked onto the back of the shed.
Good to know!
TRIUMPH: I may have finally found an ant bait that works on the ghost ants that have overtaken the house!
I've tried numerous baits, and haven't gotten them to take any of them. They seem to like this one!
TRIUMPH: I finally have a shovel and a rake. The rake is awesome!
TRIBULATION: Anytime that I rake the pile of leaves by the deck, I have a bunch of what look to be roaches that go scampering for cover. It freaks me out everytime!
TRIUMPH: I'm excited to see that so far the seeds I'm trying to start are hanging in there. I'm hoping that I found a good spot for them, and the sprouts will get enough light, but it will be cool enough to prevent them from drying out quickly.
TRIUMPH: The weeding is slowly coming along.
TRIUMPH: My hibiscus is looking a little better today after I repotted it. I potted it the other day in the Timberline soil, and it began to wilt and lost the bud that was preparing to bloom. Today it has started to firm up again after I repotted it yesterday in Jungle Growth soil.
TRIUMPH: My bougainvillea continues to get more and more gorgeous.
TRIUMPH: The Angel's Trumpet has gorgeous blooms, despite the fact that it has hardly any leaves. I guess it puts all of its energy into its blooms.
TRIBULATION: My strawberry plant has never thrived, but has merely "survived". It's probably a year or more old at this point.
TRIUMPH: My orange tree continues to grow. I can't believe I've kept it alive in a pot for all of these years. I historically haven't been real successful with plants, because they dry out so quickly, so this one beat the odds. (Since I've lived in the house, I've been much more successful with the potted plants, since I have a hose now.)
TRIUMPH: My tomato plant is doing well, and the fruit is continuing to grow.
TRIBULATION: My aloe is pitiful. I don't know why. Maybe because it's rootbound? Or because it gets too little water? It's a very bland yellow instead of green.
TRIBULATION: My ficus seedling is not doing well. Perhaps I should have gotten some rooting powder before trying to transplant it from the ground to a pot? Or perhaps the shock of having initially planted it into heavy soil instead of starter mix?
TRIUMPH: My poinsettia actually bloomed a little this year! Now in 2009 I'm going to prune it back in hopes that it will really bloom late in 2009.
TRIBULATION: The no-seeums are terrible in my yard right now! I get eaten up everytime I go out to work in the yard.
TRIUMPH: I found my violet, which has been missing since I bought it days ago, and it was still alive. It was in a plastic bag on the table with some other items.
Those are my "Triumphs and Tribulations" for this week. We'll see whether I can turn around some of those "tribulations".