Yesterday was cold with rain showers all day, so instead of working in the garden we hauled our garden waste out to the recycling center. Afterward we went and got some bark for the beds. Today was cool at 10C, but dry with mostly clear skies. Perfect weather for working outdoors. If you happened to see my last blog doing the lawn edging, we were just finishing up that work today by adding some fresh dirt along the edge and then covering it with bark.
We don’t use the nice red ornamental bark because it’s expensive and since it is almost constantly windy here it just blows away. The one we use stays put. It keeps the weeds mostly away and when we do have to weed a bit it’s always easy because the soil seems to stay looser too.
Here’s a shot of our roughly 1 cubic yard of bark. The next photo might be of interest (or maybe not). This is a 2pc tool used to handle anything you might normally use a shovel for. The pan with the handles holds about 3 good sized shovelfulls of whatever your working with, which you can then throw into a wheelbarrow,whether it be gravel, dirt, sand, bark or whatever. The shovel part is pulled to drag the stuff into the pan. The sharpish corners on the shovel part make it easy to get it into whatever you are working with. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that I have moved at least 100 tons and maybe a lot more in my over 30 years here in Norway. I never saw one before coming to Norway. They have been around for at least the last hundred years and used for just about every kind of construction work. A great tool and a cultural icon. (Ok, you can wake up girls, I’m finished!)
Here is the wife doing the brain work while the heavy lift and transport division (that’s me) keeps her supplied with the bark. I hope I get away with posting her picture this time. Her image is so small she might not be able to see it from her chair. The 2nd shot is the finished job. We did do a lot more, but this gives you the unfinished result.
Our work was really going well until the “incident”. That was when I clipped off the wrong branch of one of the wifes favorite “Blue Swede” Junipers. Here is a close-up of one.
It all happened so fast, and I didn’t know whether I should run and hide in my workshop or if I should make a stand. I realized at once that dinner this evening might not be my favorite dish. My wife said ” you are not much of a gardener” I replied that I have never claimed to be. Luckily my wife is not a vengeful person and a glass of red wine later on healed the wound. In fact we are just having it now as I write and my wife is in the middle of her daily phone visit with her 90 year old mother.
If you are wondering what “Contrast Gardening” is, it is when my wife is overambitious in her gardening and I’m under-ambitious, which is the way it was today.
One last not too exciting photo of our little holly tree. It was just a twig not so long ago and I’m constantly amazed at how much it has grown and how healthy it appears. Holly is prized as inlay stringing on woodworking projects, but I don’t think I will ever have the heart to cut it down. We’ll see.
If you have made it this far, I admire your perseverance and I thank you for reading it. Have a great day!
-- Mike the reluctant gardening assistant of Lillian