Friday, August 31, 2007

Let's plant!!!!

The other day , while shopping for lilacs, I ran across 2 Asian pear trees on sale at Kmart. I already have 1 Asian pear, I believe the variety is 20th Century. These two semi dwarf trees were another variety and they were only $5.99. The price was I bought both of them.

So what do you do after you buy a tree? You plant it right? Well, first you have to decide where you want it to grow for the next , oh say 30 years. AND after much thought, oh OK I just said, "plant it there." So the digging began and this is what we found......

Yup, a rock. Right smack dab where I wanted to plant one of the trees. And notice not 1 rock but 2 rocks (still buried to the top left of exposed rock). Along with these 2 big rocks we found numerous smaller rocks, a long iron hook, parts to a bridle, 2 long square spikes, and 2 pieces of a plow. We were able to remove this rock, with the help of my Dad and under the supervision of my Mother. This weekend we will remove the other rock and hopefully won't find a tractor or remains of a horse!!!!

Here's my Dad and Roger. Looks like he knows how to use that shovel!!!! You'd never know he had triple bypass surgery just 4 months ago.

Oh by the way...the rocks were recycled and are being used in the hosta garden. I currently have purchased 171 varieties!!!! I'm a hostaholic.

On a sad note.......the tornado that hit Fenton destroyed a lot of very large trees and damaged many homes and businesses. Judy, my cousin, sustained a lot of damage to her beautifully landscaped yard......bummer. My son lives just 2 miles south of the Tractor Supply store that was heavily damaged. He said he didn't even have a twig in his yard.

On a happier one was severely injured and the sirens went off in time to warn everyone.

If you're interested, here is a site that has numerous photos of the damage. Take note of the large twisted tree in the Oakwood Cemetery.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Hosta La!!!!

I know you have all been waiting to hear what we are going to do to the northwest corner of our property. Well haven't you???? OK that's what I thought.

I've always liked hosta plants. They come up every year, you really don't need to do anything to them except water and at the end of the cut them off and you are ready for spring the following year. Up until recently, I thought that there were maybe 20 varieties...tops. Green, green with white, white with green, bluish grey, small, medium, and large, and maybe a rare pale yellow type. Nope not even close. There are thousands of varieties. So we have decided to put in a large "hosta only" garden. This garden will be called "The Hosta la Vista Garden". Quit groaning...I heard that.

Remember the large stone/boulder by the edge of the driveway??? Well, the Hosta la Vista Garden will have large boulders intermingled upon the plants. We will also add a concrete bird bath for our little feathered friends. The plan is to have a random scattering of plants with larger varieties in the back and dwarf/small varieties in the front. I have purchased over 130 varieties so far. If you are interested in hostas, go to the Hosta Library. It's a great site with lots of photos and information. Currently (meaning today!!!), my favorites are June, Guacamole, Kossa Regal, Albiqua Drinking Gourd, and Yellow Polka Dot Bikini.

Roger has been busy the last two weeks digging large rocks out of the fence row. Getting them to the front of the property is another problem. I suggested the snow saucer. In the past we have used it to drag heavy shrubs across the lawn. It works great and doesn't leave ruts. The below photos shows how we rigged the boulder and how it moved quite effortlessly across the lawn. I didn't even break into a sweat. Oh yeah, right, I forgot.....Roger did all the rigging. I just supervised.
One rock down and many more to go.

We are also planting a smaller hosta garden under the trees in the center of the circle driveway. The photo below shows the area where we have purposely killed the grass (behind flag pole, top half of photo) where we will plant Komodo Dragon, Guacamole, Paul's Glory, Kossa Regal, Frances Williams, Patriot, Orange Marmalade, and August Moon hostas. This photo was taken from the bath in the master bedroom.
Now this is where I need everyones help. The large hosta garden has a name and I really don't want the smaller........."though not any less important"...... garden to get a complex. So I need suggestions for a name. Something that either goes with the Hosta la Vista or the Gear Acres theme. If I use your suggestion I'll send you a hosta plant for your garden. So everyone, put on your thinking caps!!!!!

Hasta la!!!!!!

Also does anyone know which case is correct, upper or lower??? Is it La or la?

Update.....rock moving has come to a halt!!!!!! Seems Roger has this weekend off so he is going racing if he can get the car ready and scaled by Saturday. This will be his first outing this year in the Mod. Below is the only photo I have on my flash drive of Roger in a Mod. Roger is in the black mod on the bottom and Gavin is in the white mod on the top. Sorry about the poor quality.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Tony Stewart and the weather Part II

Both Tony Stewart and the weather are still "hotter than the hubs of hell."

I think we Michiganders have gotten used to less humidity. The last couple of years the humidity rarely gets above 60% and it's usually been staying in the 30 to 40% range. Now I know for you desert people 30-40% is a killer but us Great Lakes people usually have to endure 3 months of sticky weather. So now that we have had to live through a week of not only hot weather but high humidity....well......I just can't take it like I used to!!!!! Yuck, icky, sticky weather. So in a nutshell...not much has happened at "The Gear", workwise that is. Seems lately all I do is water plants. Some are looking rather droopy due to the heat. Relief is in sight. Tomorrow should be very enjoyable, so I should be able to get something accomplished before I go to work. Operative word being "should".

Also a shout out to Tony Stewart who won at Watkins Glen on Sunday. Smoke is HOT, HOT, SMOKING!!!!

Tomorrow I'll fill you in on our plan for the northwest corner of the front yard and why this boulder is sitting in the driveway with a strap around it.

I just realized, after looking at the above photo, that the vegetation growing in the cracks of my driveway are greener than my lawn. Go figure.

Also, I have no idea why my paragraphs either have large spaces between them or none at all. It appears just fine in my drafts, but when I publish's different. The paragraph gods are not being kind to me at all. But just in case a former English teacher or professor reads this...I swear I'm doing it's the computer's fault...I swear. Has absolutely nothing to do with the idiot running the keyboard.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Tony Stewart and the weather........

What do Tony Stewart and the weather have in common???????

They are both currently "Hotter than the hubs of hell!!"

There is absolutely no way we can work on "The Gear" in this weather. The weatherman is forecasting 98 degrees tomorrow. So tomorrow will consist of watering plants, fruit trees, and pretending the house is dark grey.

Sunday I plan on power washing the house to remove any loose paint and hopefully loosen the little bit of paint that is actually stuck!!! I know....I're not suppose to power wash wooden shingles. Normally I wouldn't, but these are not in the best of shape and are slated for R & R. Not "rest and recreation" but "removal and replacing". The plan is to replace one side of the house each year, starting in the back. Hopefully by the time I get to the front, I will be shingling like a pro. The shingling that my Dad and I did last summer actually came out really well and that was using old shingles.

I was reading somewhere, i.e. Internet, magazine etc. that using rocks in your landscape as mulch was not exactly a good idea because it warms the soil too much. Well ......not so. I have part of my front bed covered in rocks so far. I have two clumps of coneflowers, one is surrounded by rocks and the other isn't. Which one do you think was dried out and which one was still perky??? That's right guess it, the one surrounded by rocks was perky. As far as the soil being too warm due to the rocks.......I doubt if it will ever get any warmer than it is today. I actually think the rocks keep the moisture in the ground and act as insulation. Sure the top of the rock is "hotter than the hubs of hell!!!" I like that saying!!! But if you pick up the rock and feel the bottom of it, it is cool to the touch. Of course not as cold as a "witch's t*t in a brass bra" but it is cooler than the air temp. I like that saying too!!!

Speaking of "hotter than the hubs of hell", Tony Stewart is on fire. He's now won 2 in a row. In an earlier post I wrote about kissing the bricks at Indy. I included a photo of Jimmy Johnson kissing the bricks. Well as you know......or maybe you don't......Jimmy Johnson is sponsored by "Lowe's" and Tony Stewart is sponsored by "Home Depot". Several of my friends questioned my choice of including Jimmy Johnson's photo. I'll admit I was lazy and that was the first photo I found of someone kissing the bricks, so I used it. So without further is Tony Stewart aka "Smoke" kissing the bricks at the brickyard.

Smoke and the rest of the Home Depot crew climbing the fence at "The Brickyard".

I would be remiss if I didn't mention the fact that Tony was fined $25,000 dollars for using a "bad" word in his interview with ESPN. 25,000 smackers...holy know what I could do with $25,000...let me see. I could hire someone to paint my house or I could hire someone to re shingle my house. I love that line in the movie, Exit to Eden , where Rosie O'Donnell's character says, "You want to do something nice for me? Paint my house." I digress.......The reason Tony said what he said was because....It was "hotter than the hubs of hell"!!!! he swore.....whoopee...he's sponsored by a home improvement store and anyone that has undertaken some sort of home improvement has swore at one time or another. Damn it!!!

Racing news on the home front......Gavin, in only his second outing in a midget, qualified 5th, placed 4th in his heat race, and finished 7th in the feature. Plus, he was named "Hard Charger" of the race for passing the most cars!!! Good job Gavin. Here's a photo of Gavin.

Here is the lovely Barbara pushing Gavin out onto the track for the feature. Good job Barbara!!!!