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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. This diary is primarily for my own benefit, so that I can look back upon what I did and when. But I thought others might also be interested, so here it is.
Also see What's Blooming in My Garden Now?
Diary entries for 2004 through 2014
Entries below 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 or appears as a link to another Web page.
Unless a different year is given, dates refer to other entries in the same year as the entry in which they appear, including entries on prior pages for the same year.
|Date and Weather||Observations and Activities|
Clear, sunny, and mild
|By this date last year, we had 6.8 inches of rain, almost 2.5 times the amount so far this rain year. Today, I set the hose to trickle near the valley white oak (Quercus lobata) in front. I will leave it there for two days. Next week, I will do the same on the other side of the tree, between the tree and the rosemary bush (Rosmarinus officinalis).
Some of the dwarf citrus is early in showing signs of spring. The navel orange (Citrus sinensis 'Robertson') has flower buds about to open and tiny new shoots. The lemon (Citrus limon 'Eureka') has flower buds. I fed each of the four citrus with a small handful of commercial citrus fertilzer plus two pinches of zinc sulfate. I also fed the gardenia (G. jasminoides 'Veitchii') with larger amounts of those.
While feeding the citrus, I also pruned three of them. The lemon and tangelo (Citrus reticulata × paradisi) had grown quite tall. I was concerned that the potted lemon would outgrow the ability of its roots to supply water during the heat of summer. Also, the height of both exceeded my ability to measure well, which is important when mixing systemic insecticide to combat leaf miners; the strength of the insecticide is based on the height. For the orange, I merely removed a few leafless or crossing twigs. The kumquat (Citrus margarita) did not require any trimming.
Also while feeding the citrus, I actually found a ripe lemon, which means the fruit was formed last year. I thought there was no fruit in 2020 because of the tree's near-death experience last year (8 Feb 20), so this was a surprise. I also picked and ate three ripe kumquats.
Weather data are from the Cheeseboro (CHE) weather station, about 2 miles ENE of my house.
The high temperature (°F) is daytime for the indicated date; the low temperature (°F) is for the previous night.
Winter chill is the cumulative hours of temperatures at or below 45°F from 1 November through 31 March. It is reported during that period and through April.
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 the end of the day). I also indicate peak wind gusts parenthetically when they are significantly high.
Rain is in inches. Rain-year is the cumulative amount of rainfall from 1 October until 30 September of the following year (our "rain-year"). Week is the cumulative amount of measurable rainfall from noon seven days ago until noon of the indicated date. If no measurable 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. Also, a day that would normally be characterized as "mild" might instead be "warm" if the immediately previous days were quite cold. Finally, such characterization reflects when I was actually outside and gardening and ignores changes that occur while I am inside.
The signature line I use when writing messages about my garden includes the following:
Diary entries for 2004 through 2014
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