Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Alison's Blog: Mastic Beach


MY RECOMMENDATION: Yes, with reservations

AMAZON SUBSCRIPTION LINK: Alison's Blog: Mastic Beach, by Alison Toon


BLOG DESCRIPTION: Notes, thoughts, pictures, links. Life on Long Island's southern shore, amid the wetlands... restoring house and garden. Realtor and telecommuter enjoying one of Long Island's best kept secrets

MY REVIEW: This is the kind of blog that makes you yearn for it to be illustrated with photos, but it isn't -- not even at the actual website. Oh, there' s an occasional photo, but nothing near what there should be, to illustrate posts on gardening, on new houses, on old houses, on a storm's devastation. A picture is worth a thousand words - and we don't get any.

I think gardeners will really love this blog....except for the lack of photos

--New home on Park Drive
--Gardening is the cure for all ills
--... and I nearly forgot! Eagles!!
--April Sunday
--Raccoons have long memories

Sample post:
Gardening is the cure for all ills

A week away, in California, where everything is already in flower and, while very green, is hurtling through spring towards summer. Here, spring is everything coming up at the same time. Especially weeds. And deer.

Despite the best-set plans and windchimes and obstacles, at least one small deer made its way up through the broken fence, onto the raised part of the back yard. Bambi feasted on the surviving tulips, the young hostas, young daylilies, and lettuce. Lettuce!!! Left his or her hoofprints all through the nascent rose garden, ignored the baby lavendar, and zoomed in on deer favourites. Fence repairs needed yesterday.

Knee surgery on Tuesday, and I don't know what it will do to my gardenability :-) next weekend... so today was busy. Baby herbs from Home Depot; potted-up and seeds sown and all on the deck. Baby geraniums/pelargoniums all lined up on the wall, daring a late-late frost (about 10% chance according to the wise ones). A new, dwarf Japanese maple, Acer palmatum v. dissectum virdis, in the largest blue pot which took me 15 minutes to roll from its place in the little woods (a deer or other bandit had stolen the baby dogwood that was planted in it last year). And I planted a lot of bright yellow Canna lilies in all the other blue pots (how did I collect so many blue pots already?) Maybe having them in pots, I'll remember to lift them in autumn, instead of wondering what the empty papery things are when digging in spring, which is what happened to the last cannas to arrive in the garden.

More variegated Japanese iris arrived while I was away, and having been in a soggy cardboard box outside all week, seemed very content in their new spot in the low, damp part of the front garden. Also in the box were two blue salvia, blanched white leaves struggling to get out of the box. They have gone in the bed near the mailbox.

More mulching done in the front, around the baby perrenials that are up. A tiny lupin plant, from last year's seeds. More coneflowers and a myriad of bee balm. Irises. The first cosmos seed have sprouted.

The flowering quince is almost, but not quite, ready. One of the old-fashioned just-yellow daffodils was so beautiful that all I could do was stare.

I think the pretty bush with purple berries may not have made it through the winter. The branches are dry twigs, brittle to the touch. I'll leave it a while and hope that it's a late-starter, but it's looking iffy.

The beautiful rhododendron that I planted last year in the little woods has no leaves, no buds. I don't think the deer are the guilty ones this time: more likely the long-winter, extra-soggy wetland reaching salty fingers to its roots. The branches that remain are still greenish: it may yet recover.

I just wish I would remember where I planted everything last year. But when something forgotten reappears, it's a very nice surprise.

Ms. Cairo writes two blogs of her own:
Winged Victory: Women in Aviation
Volcano Seven: Treasure and Treasure Hunters

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