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Many years ago, when I first started my Web site, I created an online diary of my gardening activities and observations. However, with work and the commute from Hell, I was often so tired I had to choose between maintaining my garden and maintaining my diary. Sometimes, I did neither. In 1998, I stopped my diary and removed the pages from my Web site.
Now I am retired. I am well-rested and have plenty of time to both garden and maintain a diary. So here it is.
Also see What's Blooming in My Garden Now?
Entries are in reverse order (latest at the top). Daily, I might stoop to pull a weed or use a hose to water some potted plants; however, I don't consider those significant gardening activities. Thus, you will not see daily entries. Also, I might accumulate a few entries before updating this page on the Web.
When plants have well-known common names, their scientific names are given only the first time they appear on this page (entry closest to the bottom). There, the common name is in bold.
Dates refer to other entries in the same year (but perhaps a different page) as the entry in which they appear unless a different year is given.
|Date and Weather||Observations and Activities|
Cloudy, occasional hazy sun, mild
Occasional drizzle but no measurable rain.
|The grading contractor finally finished. My Hill is back to its original shape (almost). First, they terraced the slope, laying geogrid (a very heavy plastic mesh) on each terrace. Then, they compacted a foot of dirt to create a new terrace, working their way up the slope and trimming each terrace to create a continuous face instead of steps.
At the backs of four of the terraces, they laid pierced drain pipes that connect to two (not one) collector pipes that run down the surface of the slope. They installed a concrete V-ditch across the top, feeding into a down-slope concrete V-ditch in the center. This latter feeds into a catch box and then into an underground drain pipe. That drain pipe plus the two collectors run in parallel diagonally across the back yard, around the east side of the house, and end with three hole in the curb in front so that they can empty into the street gutter.
Now it is time for my landscape contractor to do his work. I plan to restore the garden the way it used to look with only slight variations:
Today, the landscape contractor left for a two-week vacation. That's okay since I don't want any planting done until the end of September, when the weather begins to cool.
The loss in front —
The loss in back —
For the first time in well over a month, I was able to do some gardening without worrying whether the grading contractor would make my effort wasted. I restored the wire for the climbing 'Fourth of July' rose in front. I did some corrective pruning where tree and shrub branches had been broken. And I restored the blocks forming the raised bed for the tangelo back into a square. (The grading contractor did not remove these blocks; instead, he kept hitting them with his construction equipment.) I poured a lot of water into various parts of the back yard and groomed the Shasta daisies and the lilies of the Nile (Agapanthus orientalis).
Clear with some high clouds, mostly sunny, and hot
|They're not quite half way repairing My Hill. I want to cry every time I look out the window into my back yard. The rose bed is gone. When I asked the grading contractor where was the trellis for the star jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides), he told me it was trashed. The raised bed for my dwarf tangelo was taken apart to allow the Bobcat to maneuver.
It's not much better in front. The French lavender (Lavandula dentata) is buried under a pile of gravel. Dirt has been stacked on the parkway. So far, all the roses in front are intact (with a few broken canes); but I can't soak them with the Bobcat going back and forth.
All I can do in my garden now is pour water on the potted plants, all of which have been moved onto the patio. I can't even reach some of the pots. Instead, I turn the hose up high and water the pots from a distance. I also have to hand-water the tangelo.
Today, I picked four peaches. At least something is unchanged.
It's official. This was the driest rain-year in southern California since record-keeping began. (West of the Rocky Mountains, most rain falls in the winter. Thus, rain years are reckoned from July to June or (by some agencies) from October to September.) Los Angeles had 3.21 inches since July 2006. Fortunately, California's reservoirs still have adequate reserves, with several near or above their average amounts of water in storage.
Weather data are from the Cheesebro (CHE) weather station, a little less than 1.2 miles ENE of my house.
The high temperature (°F) is daytime for the indicated date; the low temperature (°F) is for the night ending on that date.
The relative humidity is at noon. (In my garden, it is likely higher than reported, a result of regular irrigation.)
Wind speeds (mph) are average (not peak) low and high, midnight to midnight (subject to later correction for diary entries posted before then end of the day).
Rain is in inches. Rain amounts are omitted after 60 consecutive days elapse without any measurable amount.
Season is the cumulative amount of rainfall since the start of the current rainy season, which began on 2 Oct 2006 with the first measurable rain, until noon on the indicated date.
Week is the cumulative amount of rainfall from noon seven days ago until noon of the indicated date. If no rain fell in that period, Days since last is reported.
Characterization of the weather (e.g., Clear, sunny, and warm) is purely subjective; for example, "warm" might occur with higher temperatures than "hot" if the former occurs with lower humidity and more breezes than the latter.
The signature line I use when writing messages about my garden includes the following:
Main gardening page
Current month's diary page
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