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My Garden Diary

May and June 2019

Copyright © 2019 by David E. Ross

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. 7

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?


January-February 2013
March-April 2013
May-June 2013
July-August 2013
September-October 2013
November-December 2013
January-February 2014
March-April 2014
May-June 2014
July-August 2014
September-October 2014
November-December 2014
January-February 2015
March-April 2015
May-June 2015
July-August 2015
September-October 2015
November-December 2015
January-February 2016
March-April 2016
May-June 2016
July-August 2016
September-October 2016
November-December 2016
January-February 2017
March-April 2017
May-June 2017
July-August 2017
September-October 2017
November-December 2017
January-February 2018
March-April 2018
May-June 2018
July-August 2018
September-October 2018
November-December 2018
January-February 2019
March-April 2019

Diary entries for 2004 through 2012

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.

Dates without years refer to other entries in the same year as the entry in which they appear — including entries on prior pages for the same year — unless a different year is given.

Date and Weather Observations and Activities
17 May

Party cloudy; partly sunny, sometimes hazy; cool

Temp: 48-68
Humidity: 41%
Wind: 0-19

Finished pruning the first myrtle (10 May) and started on the second (of five).

Finished trimming the edges of the path betwen the west bed from the back lawn. This included removing much red fecue that was growing in the path. I fear the path between the rose bed and lawn will require much more effort.


Rain —
This rain-year: 19.11
Week: 0.58

15 May

Mostly cloudy, some hazy sun, cool to mild

Temp: 53-72
Humidity: 53%
Wind: 2-9

Trimmed some more of the edges of a path in back (3 May).

Pruned another Artemisia (10 May).


Rain —
This rain-year: 18.66
Week: 0.13

12 May

Clear, sunny, and warm

Temp: 54-81
Humidity: 47%
Wind: 3-13

Rain —
This rain-year: 18.66
Week: 0.13

The Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana × truncata) cuttings (12 Sep 18) are well rooted, so I moved them to a larger pot with a potting mix that contains some nutrients. The parents of the other two cacti are in bloom. I will wait until they are finished before replacing them with their rooted cuttings.

Not only are the cuttings of the 'Illumination Flame' foxglove (Digitalis purpurea × canariensis, 14 Sep 18) well rooted, they are starting to bloom. I could not separate the two cuttings, which were rooted in the same pot; so I planted them in a single hole in the east bed in back.

Tied some of the longer new shoots of the climbing 'Peace' and 'Don Juan' roses onto the low slough wall behind them. This should promote the growth of the side shoots that bear flowers.

10 May

Cloudy, gray, and cold

Temp: 52-61
Humidity: 78%
Wind: 0-8

Rain —
This rain-year: 18.63
Week: 0.10

Because of the excellent chill this past winter — 310.4 hours at or below 45°F from November through March — my peach tree (Prunus persica 'Santa Barbara') set an abundant crop. The immature peaches are about the size of small plums. Today, I thinned them, removing more fruit than I left on the branches. The remaining peaches will become much larger than if I did not thin them, but the pits will not be any larger. The result will be more useable fruit.

While thinning the peaches, I noticed a possible gopher hole. If I see more signs of a gopher, I will place poison bait into the tunnels. Posisoned gophers die in their tunnels and thus do not endange preditors.

Trimmed more of the edges of a path in back (3 May). While doing this, I also cleared some of the red fescue grass (Festuca rubra) from around an Artemisia 'Powis Castle' (A. arborescens × absinthium) growing as an accent within the edge of the lawn. I also pruned two of those Artemisias.

Pruned more of the first dwarf myrtle (3 May). I might have finished, but the garden waste bin was full although it was emptied earlier today. When this one is done, there are four more to prune. Maybe, I should have pruned them last year before they got so big.

3 May

Clear, sunny, and mild

Temp: 51-78
Humidity: 44%
Wind: 0-11

Rain —
This rain-year: 18.53
Week: 0.05

Fed the dwarf citrus and gardenia (G. jasminoides) with commercial citrus food plus a trace of zinc sulfate.

Started trimming the edges of the paths in back. Actually, I started with the edge of the lawn along the main patio at the west end of the bed of fortnight lilies (Dietes iridiodes). Then, I did the west path from the patio to the dwarf lemon. This also included weeding the decomposed granite path. Most of the weeds were wild grasses.

Started pruning the dwarf myrtle (Myrtus communis 'Compacta'). The term "dwarf" must be relative since these shrubs are now taller than I and are interfering with use of the path.

1 May

Clear, sunny, and mild

Temp: 47-71
Humidity: 47%
Wind: 1-14

Rain —
This rain-year: 18.53
Week: 0.05

Finished trimming all the edges of the front lawn. This included trimming the dwarf English ivy (Hedera helix 'Hahn's') around the liquidambar tree (L. styraciflua). I also weeded the area behind that tree, around the mock orange bushes (Pittosporum tobira).

Lightly trimmed some of the eugenia (Syzygium paniculatum) along the east side of the front lawn, only enough to unblock the sprinkler head that is on a tall riser among those bushes.

The dill seeds (Anethum graveolens) have sprouted (19 Apr).

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:

Climate: California Mediterranean
Sunset Zone: 21 -- interior Santa Monica Mountains with some ocean influence (USDA 10a, very close to Sunset Zone 19)
See also My Climate.
March-April 2019
January-February 2019
November-December 2018
September-October 2018
July-August 2018
May-June 2018
March-April 2018
January-February 2018
November-December 2017
September-October 2017
July-August 2017
May-June 2017
March-April 2017
January-February 2017
November-December 2016
September-October 2016
July-August 2016
May-June 2016
March-April 2016
January-February 2016
November-December 2015
September-October 2015
July-August 2015
May-June 2015
March-April 2015
January-February 2015
November-December 2014
September-October 2014
July-August 2014
May-June 2014
March-April 2014
January-February 2014
November-December 2013
September-October 2013
July-August 2013
May-June 2013
March-April 2013
January-February 2013

Diary entries for 2004 through 2012


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