Re: [gardeners] Spring cleaning

George Shirley (
Wed, 20 Feb 2002 10:11:17 -0600

We're doing the same thing here in southwest Louisiana Ron. Been weeding and cleaning up leaves and
dead stuff for last few days in between insulating the garage and putting up the old cabinets out

We got about 4 inches of rain last night, came in buckets and deluges. Today everything is fresh and
green and smells good. The mayhaw is blooming, hopefully it will bear fruit this year. The oaks are
budding out and pollenating so I am going to take a chance and declare spring has arrived here.
Still a mite cool outside but the sun is shining brightly and Miss Sleepy Dawg has a sunbeam to nap

After going hypoglycemic at 0200 today I'm feeling rather grumpy and dumpy but had to go out to work
at 0630 and back at 0830. Now I'm on my way to the supermarket to see if there's any dead cow on

This weekend the winter rye will get tilled under in the main garden plot and I will till in compost
atop that and compost in the west strip garden. All this in preparation for planting soon, maybe by
first week in March. It may be time to stick the thermometer in the ground and watch for the magic
numbers <70> to show up.


Ron Hay wrote:
> Good morning, friends,
> It seems like our flirtation with disastrously cold weather is over for
> the nonce; today we will see 80, tomorrow, 85. This is utter madness!
> One week the apricot buds are minuscule, the next, after a much needed
> rain (yes, Penny, we, too in So Cal, although not in NorCal, are in
> drought conditions: we have less than 4" of precip as of today, whereas
> we should have at least 10"), our apricot and nectarine are ready to
> pop.....weeks ahead of our citrus, which is virtually unheard of.
> This past Monday, Vivian got up on the roof and peeled back what amounts
> to an entire dumpster load of frost-killed passion fruit vine. It will
> take a while before we can cram all of it into our green yard container
> (singular) to be carted off by the city to be composted in Griffeth
> Park. At the rate of one can a week (I have ordered a second container),
> it will take 3 weeks to dispose of it. Until it is gone, we cannot even
> begin on all the calla leaves and other detritus, left behind by our
> killer frost.
> Our coral tree (erythrina coralloides), the official tree of the City of
> Los Angeles, looks absolutely pathetic, having lost all of its leaves,
> but its young trunk and branches are still green, so we are hopeful.
> The only things blooming in our yard right now are brave geraniums and
> our huge rosemary bush, which has become a veritable bee pasture. I had
> no idea when we planted our rosemary from a 4" pot purchased for a
> dollar at the Burbank Farmers' Market three years ago, that it would
> grow to 4' high and wide. It's become sort of like zucchini: friends and
> neighbors bar their doors when they see us coming with armloads of
> rosemary:)
> Our roses are coming back beautifully, and the fact that they have been
> pruned back to about 2' allows us to do some much-needed weeding and
> feeding.
> In between the roses along our driveway, our Iceland poppies are
> blooming to beat the band. I would never have guessed that such bright,
> delicate creatures would make such long-lasting bouquets in the house!
> They last well over a week!
> The callas that were not too badly frost burned are beginning to bloom.
> I just wish our compost container were not already so full, or I would
> put the leaves in there. Maybe in a few days, mother nature will work
> her magic and reduce the bulk of the compost pile, but at the rate we
> are putting in veggie peels from Lenten dishes, it will take a while.
> Well, boys and girls, it's time to hit the trail to work to nurture a
> couple of escrows.
> Enjoy thinking of spring:)
> Ron