Monday, January 28, 2013


I continue to deal with the bougainvillea that have taken over my fence, and are pulling it over with their weight. Since I worked on the other one for a couple of weeks and got it down to a quarter of its previous size, I decided to start on the one over by the mango.

Only the half free of the mango is in bloom. The rest hidden under the mango looks dead, but most is very much alive.

This bougie is growing into the mango.

While working on it, I discovered a bird nest from last season.

I mostly filled my 65-gallon horticulture bin with bougie debris, and removed perhaps a quarter of the plant.

It's a start. After that I cleaned out the bed over by the shed where I planted the grapevine, and put down some mulch. I started with dirt and weeds, as well as the rubber vine that grew from behind the shed and rooted down into the bed uninvited...

And my poor pitiful crape myrtle, which was also being taken over by the rubber vine. (Note that I believe the crape myrtle goes dormant in winter, and therefore looks dead right now. Usually it gets leaves and flowers in spring. It only has a few leaves right now. However I don't know whether it should be this bare. So we'll see whether or not it "springs" back.)

You'll also notice that all around the crape myrtle is this weed that grows in a carpet...

It's amazing that as you go to grab a handful, you find it is growing by runners, and a whole strip will come up...

And before you know it, you discover something like this cement pad is growing beneath it...

When I was done, this is what the bed looked like.

And this was my pile of debris (I have to be careful to not cut down more than the garbage guys will pick up. Last time we did a large amount of work, we had to bribe the garbage guy with $20 and load the debris into the truck ourselves to avoid paying hundreds to the claw truck for pickup.)

I also came across leeches in/on my bag of mulch. It was the first time I've ever seen leeches, other than in horror movies. They are creepy!

Otherwise this is what is going on around the yard:

My bean and pea seedlings continue to grow, but I had this one little guy that was slow to make an appearance.

But once they appear, they sprout up so fast. This was the next morning...

My yellow cherry tomato is growing like gangbusters right now, and more flowers are coming in.

My jalapeno pepper is growing, and a few flowers, but the plant isn't growing that much yet.

Same with the Better Bush tomato. The plant hasn't really grown, hasn't really flowered, and the two tomatoes on it haven't shown any obvious increase in size. Yet the Brandywine tomatoes that I sprouted from seed are growing around the outside of the cage.

The passion vine is loaded with new blooms every day, and still smells like grape juice!

I had put columbine flower seeds in this decorative vase. I keep checking for some sign of it doing something.

Now the other day I spotted a couple sprigs of green popping up. Trouble is, I can't know that they are columbine flowers. They could be weeds! Only time will tell.

My grapevine is doing well so far.

It's beginning to twine around the trellis.

These pictures were taken before I laid down mulch, and I swear that the vine looks to be a deeper green today, after the mulch and a good watering. Or maybe it is just the contrast of seeing it against the dark mulch that makes it look darker.

I also have a prickly pear cactus that was stuck against the back fence behind the shed, and I noticed yesterday that it is flowering as well.

I've started collecting the pieces from my mahogany seeds, hearing that they make good mulch. So I figured I could use them as mulch in some of my potted plants.

I also had to do a round-up of lubber babies. The nymphs are making an early appearance this year, thanks to our warm winter.

This was my third batch removed from the yard. I've already removed a few dozen. Smaller batches than I usually have, but earlier in the year.

The whole time I worked in the yard, Zook waited patiently.

By the time I was ready to go inside, he was falling asleep.

Such a good boy!

So I am slowly making progress on the yard. I dread when they rains begin, as that will mean mowing the yard at least once a week, and I'll have quite a time trying to keep up with the mowing and the weeding and everything else that is needed. (Mowing in 95 degree temps is absolutely no fun!) Ugh!

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