Monday, August 3, 2015

I COULD BARELY WAIT

I had been gone from home for over a month and could barely wait for dawn. I needed to get outside to see what my garden looked like. We were supposed to be home in daylight but a medical emergency of one of the passengers on our Heathrow to Austin flight was cause for our plane to turn around over the Atlantic and fly back to the closest airport-Glasgow. We arrived home in the dark.
I had already been forewarned by my neighbors that things were brown and the stock tanks were very low and I knew what that meant. Those plants like iris and papyrus sitting up high would be toast. Hopefully the water lilies would be OK.



This is the stock tank in the side entry which is in shade for most of the day. The water level was down from 2' to 8" but all the plants were still alive thanks to my floating islands. The only loss was the pump which was high and dry and had burnt itself out.  
I filled up the tank from the rain water barrel and after 24 hours things were looking better. I am so glad I put division of the Colorado water lily in here because I think I may have lost the one in the larger stock tank.


Not such a welcome sight at the other tanks. The small tank had no water in it at all and the larger one was down to 10" I quickly filled it up but don't hold out too much hope for these plants.


I filled up the larger tank and removed all the dead material from the surface. I wonder if that hint of green will mean that there is still life in the iris.


And the papyrus.


The native water lily had already put out new leaves by morning. Now it is time to spruce up the floating plants and wait and see what happens.


There is little of value left in the vegetable garden. Just a couple of peppers and eggplant to nurse back in the hope of a few late summer vegs. There is much work to do in all parts of the garden; dead and dying plants but the worst shock came in the bathroom garden. The pittosporums were burn to a crisp. This one really hurts.


They have been there for the life of the garden and have seen some terrible summers. What happened? When David investigated the sprinklers he discovered that it was human error. The box had been reprogrammed but never set! Neither this garden nor the English garden received any water for a month. Not sure if the plants will make a comeback but I have too much to do to worry about them at the moment.

14 comments:

  1. So sorry about the loss of some of your plants, but I'm sure you had some wonderful adventures. You'll get it whipped back in shape in no time. Hope everything else is going well for you. The summer is almost over and a cool down should be coming soon.

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  2. Oh, no. Sorry you had so much dry out.
    It has been hot, and NO rain. Feast or famine.
    You'll work your magic touch, and the garden will be happy again. :)

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  3. Oh no! Hoping the loved plants that are crispy bounce back!

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  4. Ouch! I hope the Pittosporum and other plants come back.

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  5. Losing the pittosporum looks depressing. I guess gardening forces some acceptance on us all!

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  6. As I've been following your fabulous travels on FB I've wondered about your garden. I am so sorry, not a great homecoming.

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  7. Ouch! I'm betting those hints of green are just what you hope - signs of remaining life. With your gentle care and regular attention they'll be back before you know it.

    That is certainly a shame about the sprinklers not being set for certain areas. Perhaps their reworking will be inspiring and rejuvenating to your spirit as well as to the beds themselves.

    When we finally turned our system on a couple of weeks ago, we discovered we have a strip so overgrown the sprinklers have been rendered useless. I'm trying to hand water and baby things along until it cools enough to reasonably approach the significant pruning that must happen. I don't think I've ever been quite so eager for cooler wetter weather than this year, which feels really odd after all that rain earlier!

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  8. Oh, I'm so sorry, dear one. I've got lots of crispy, too, even with weekly watering. When I can go around and slowly water, things perk up but it sure is a lot of work.

    Yours are already jumping back in, so I just know it's going to be okay. The pittosporum will take some time, I know. Big hugs.

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  9. Oh boy. Not nice to come home to that. Pittos can come back from stumps...

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  10. ouch... hope things return for you. Its been so hot here, I've lost some plants as well.

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  11. Can you hire a teen next time? They couldn't take care of everything as well as you, but maybe they could at least ward off death by heat.

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    1. Sheryl-My garden is just too much of a responsibility to leave with anyone. I just swallow hard and off I go.

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  12. I always unplug my pond and fountain pumps when I leave town for even a few days, just so they don't burn out. I wonder if you could throw a shade cloth over the tanks when you leave for a long trip in summer, just to keep evaporation loss to a minimum? I must say, your floating islands are genius for keeping the plants in water.

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    1. Good idea Pam. I always unplug my little water feature but never thought of doing that with the tanks.

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