Saturday, March 25, 2017

Spring Fertilizing, New Door Mats, New Hosta Bed Prep

Ahhhh.....spring.  We have had some very mild weather lately but unfortunately when the weather is mild it is also raining.  But not today.  It actually got to 72 degrees but by mid afternoon it was starting to cloud up and the temps started to drop with the rain starting later in the evening.  But first we were able to get a few things done.

While R used the broadcast spreader to put down a spring blend (30-0-4) fertilizer/weed killer from Ace I was busy elsewhere in the yard.  Ace is running a sale on their house brand fertilizer and we purchased the 15,000 sq ft bag for $43.99.  Since we have an Ace card we received an instant savings of $6.00 each off of two bags (limit of 2). We needed 5 bags.  We have used this brand for several years and have been very satisfied with it's performance.  In the fall, we use their fall blend and we don't fertilize anymore than those two times.

A decade ago, I had Tru Green fertilize my lawn 5 times a year.  It was needless and wasteful.  I like a nice, weed free, green lawn but I am more mindful of runoff now so as long as my lawn is mostly weed free and green, I am happy.

Last week my sister and I got together for some shopping at a discount store called Ollie's Bargain Outlet.  We were in search of outdoor pots.  My sister recently remodeled the exterior of their house and was in search of black pots similar to the ones I purchased last year at Ollie's.  I bought another huge black pot for the front porch and she purchased two tall slim black pots for each side of the exterior door of her attached kennel.  I need to go and take some photos of her house.  It is very clever how they attached the kennel to the garage side of the house.  It matches their house and can be used by a new owner as an office, hair salon, or even a man cave.

I also purchased two door mats made of rubber.  Oh my gosh, they were so heavy and very difficult to get into the cart.  They are on the large size but I purchased two in the hope that together they would work in front of the patio door.  Each mat measures 24X48 inches.  I was really flying by the seat of my pants because I didn't have any measurements of the step with me.  The mats were only $9.99 each and I knew I could use them elsewhere if they didn't work in front of the patio door.  The photo below shows one mat.
Here is what the two mats together look like in front of the patio door.  Perfect.  They will look better once that nasty door is removed and the vintage doors installed.  It's almost warm enough to rip it out without losing all the heat in the house.
 I have been very good about not buying anymore hostas. At last count I had over 200 varieties and multiples of most of them.  My beds were full and there wasn't any place for new ones except miniatures. I purchased several hostas last year and the year before but that was it.  So I am kind of giddy about the thought of more hosta buying for my new hosta bed in the side yard.
We have also started the dismantling of the swimming pool.  Currently we are removing the slate so we can use it when we repair the sidewalks.  Next we will remove the concrete coping around the edge and remove the two ladders.  The bottom was already jack hammered when we purchased the house.  This pool is old and very deep.  The walls are made of red brick with cement troweled onto the bricks.  It should crumble very easily once the apron around the edge is jack hammered.

You can see where we have been burning branches and twigs in the corner of the pool.   The deep pool protects the fire from the wind and allows us to burn on days where the breeze might make it a no go elsewhere.  

We have had a lot of very windy weather as of late.  I see tarps on a lot of people's roofs.  We were very pleased that the shallow roof over the kitchen, where we removed the rubber roof and installed asphalt shingles, held up perfectly.  We feel that adding the 4th nail and removing the cellophane strip, which allowed the shingles to stick to the shingle below it really helped, especially since the bottom edge of the shingles were exposed to oncoming winds of up to 65 mph.
 The last restoration window for the game room has arrived but they are going to wait to deliver it until we reframe the existing window opening to fit the new window.  I think once this rain pattern blows through, we will remove the window and reframe it.  I will be so happy to see that last rotted and inappropriate style window gone. 

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