I took the camera for a quick photo excursion outside, this early-evening. (Whenever I grab the camera, Luna always jumps up and heads for the door. She's learned all my routines!)
The first thing that caught my eye, this morning, was that the closed-up buds of the crossvine (Bignonia 'Shalimar Red') have started to open. The flowers in the first photo have a dusting of... something. I think it may be a shower of sawdust from where a carpenter bee is drilling into our patio cover. (*sigh*)
The outside of the flower is much prettier, I think, than the inside, which looks washed-out, by comparison.
I'm eager to get this planted, now that the cannas are out of the way...
A golden-apricot rose on 'Joseph's Coat' was a warm spot in the last of the daylight.
(This was a cool, dry, windy day. With such a mild winter and early spring, there's no knowing how many more "fresh" days we'll have before humidity settles in for the middle of the year.)
It was less noticeable today (atmospheric conditions), but yesterday, one half of the yard was perfumed with fragrant tea olive (heavenly!) and the other half with delectable banana shrub. (Please ignore the signs of scale. I now have some Neem oil concentrate and a non-herbicide sprayer, but I haven't yet read up on when I should try spraying...)
Here's the oldest and biggest of our tea olives-- the source of such a wonderful, sweet, fresh fragrance. I really love this plant. It's not the most beautiful thing to look at (not that it's ugly, either...), but the scent--! I can't believe that I wasn't even aware of this plant until a couple of years ago. I can't recommend it highly enough.
I never did get around to pruning most of the roses. The lack of a real winter tricked me. I might try to do some pruning on the remaining roses (mainly the Knock Out roses), but I'm just not that confident in rose-pruning...
I had planned to hack them all back fairly close to the ground-- the "factory reset" of the plant world. (That's probably a no-no, but I've heard that some gardeners do it with good results.) Maybe it sounds strange, but a more careful, measured pruning seems scarier-- like I have to actually know what I'm doing.
Donald mowed the weeds on the pad this afternoon. They'd been getting tall, though the grass in the rest of the lawn is still quite short. (Stupid weedy septic pad!) The weeds are also already encroaching on the new Oval Bed (or whatever I should call it). I plan to nudge the edges back out with more mulch, eventually-- and maybe extend it a bit further toward the north (the side closest in the photo).
I hauled several wheelbarrow loads of mulch today (trying to take advantage of the cooler weather. It helped, but as always, there's much more to do!
As you can see, we still haven't repainted the patio cover. Maybe-- maybe we'll manage it sometime this year. A variety of "issues" have cropped up to prevent it, so far, and there's always the chance of more, but anything's possible.
I also need to decide what to do about that circular bed (which is over the septic tank). I'm having trouble feeling excited about any of the options that come to mind, but grassy weeds are already starting to grow there, so it's time to make a decision and do something-- even if it ends up being a temporary solution.
The weather is supposed to be nice again tomorrow, so I'm hoping to get a good chunk of mulching done!