j_cheney: (Bunny)
I have identified three of the unknown geraniums as Geranium x oxonianum "Wargrave's Pink", and a handful of others as Geranium incanum. It's always lovely when they flower and show you their colors. Now just a couple of unkknowns left ;o)
j_cheney: (Bunny)

Ladybug nestled amid the Gold-and-Silver Chrysanthemum

This time of year becomes a season of waiting in the garden. I wait to see what seeds germinate, and then wait to try to figure out what I had planted there (I've got a souple of spots where I just don't remember what I put down last fall). I wait to see if any of the foxglove seed sprouts.

I wait to see if the transplanted things settle in, and if those expensive bare-root geraniums make it out of the ground. I wait for others to bloom in hopes of classifying them. I wonder if the carolina geraniums (which are native geraniums, and therefore considered a weed) can cross pollenate with my non-native beauties...

I wait for things to flower: the weigelas, the azaleas, and the irises.

There's little work to be done out there now that the front yard project is finished. I'll plant some forced tulips and amaryllises, perhaps do a bit of weeding (which is hard when I'm not sure if I planted something there.)

But mostly I wait, walking around the damp garden looking for signs of progress, signs of life. I'll water on occasion. But for the next few weeks, it's a waiting game, and I have no choice but to play it.
j_cheney: (Bunny)
I'm not certain if [livejournal.com profile] jimhines has tradmarked this phrase yet.
(ETA: Title edited to properly meet [livejournal.com profile] jimhines' trademark requirements. ;o) )

Last night it hit 25 here, which meant danger for a lot of the plants that are up. Most can take a 32, or even a 30, with only minor leaf burning, but 25 is just too low.
Read more... )
j_cheney: (Bunny)
So, one of the problems with a novel revision is....remembering where you put things. I had to move some info forward, and now I'm in a chapter which has an info-y discussion....and I can't remember which tidbits I moved into earlier spots in the text. Drat. Now I'm gonna have to wear out 300 pages of text with searches and hope that I can arrange not to repeat myself. ::sighs::

So I'm currently going back and forth at the 60% mark, fidgiting over every single line. Ick.

On the gardening front:
All the limestone blocks are moved and in place.
Pinched finger is sore and achy, but usable.

From the garage:
Finally a chance to use that quick dry cement we've had forever (to cement the limestone)
From the back yard:
Will transplant some hostas and ajugas
At the expensve garden store:
Found an oakleaf hydrangea that can go where the 4.5 privets were, plus some anemones and pecan shell mulch.
At the cheap store:
Getting top-soil, a new metal rake (old one is busted), and many wax-leaf begonias.

Oddly, heucheras are pretty much 12.99...no matter where you go.
(I've gone to Lowe's, Ace Hardware, Walmart, TLC...all 12,99)
j_cheney: (Bunny)
[livejournal.com profile] asakiyume has a beautiful post about birds here. I suspect there a plot bunny poking out under the leaves therein. Must 'heart' this post.

Speaking of leaves, I'm going to take out a privet today. Possibly just one of the three evil beasts, but I've been needing to do something about those monsters for some time. They've sent out roots everywhere, and I suspect they'll try to invade the house eventually. Plus the third privet's branches block the water spigot for the front yard. Much digging and chopping is in store for me.

Wrote one of the new scenes for DitD. You know those 'white room' scenes that we're never supposed to write? This is in a root cellar, no light, no window, door shut. No visual input. Oh wait, I'm actually pretty good at 'no visual input'....no problemo.

I realize that 'teh' is the proper mispelling for 'the.' I, however, persist in spelling it 'hte'....
j_cheney: (Bunny)
I'll be mostly off-line again this week-end, but we've got snow here, which keeps me out of the garden.

Accuweather is predicting a low of 27 tonight, which is not a terrible freeze, and probably not a serious threat to anything in the garden except the Amaryllis plants that have already sent up straps. I'm going to trust that all my geraniums (being the hardy varieties, not those silly zonal things which are actually pelargoniums despite being commonly called geraniums) will prove hardy enough to make it through this.

Accuweather shows up getting back up to 58 degrees tomorrow, which will take care of any lingering snow.

My bluebeards have been shipped, which will fill out some holes in the garden. I hope Fedex is timely.
j_cheney: (Default)
Yes, this is the sort of Dark Lord one gets in the mail....still a baby.


There's supposedly a chance of snow tonight, although accuweather says tomorrow morning. In honor of that, I spent this afternoon out getting mulch to protect my babies. Went to Home Depot and bought cedar mulch for some beds, and then to TLC to get some cocoa mulch for the beds that abutt the house. I smell strange, like chocolate if I turn my head in one direction, and cedar in the other. Chocolate-covered cedar chips....

I have hastily constructed a bunch of frames out of newspaper and tree protector grid, and will be out covering all my precious geraniums at darkfall.

I also finally found a Climbing Iceberg Rose. I had one on the far side of the yard which was killed by a neighbor's excessive application of Round-Up in their yard (roses are sensitive to run-off). I won't be planting this one for a few days, but I'm putting it in a different spot where I'm sure it will be glorious...

Finally, parked next to this at the garden center. cut for pictures )
j_cheney: (Bunny)
Did about two and a half hours of yardwork. Crowbars are surprisingly useful grardening tools.

Got my new Dark Lords* in the mail today. They look all pale and wimpy.

Re-organized office a bit. Tired, and entering the stupid "I'll never sell anything again" phase of my writer's cycle. Meh.

Rewrite proceeding, just over 1/3 of the way through. Plot bunny, as always, supplying information for something I'm not working on.
____________________________

*Geraniums. Dark Lord Geraniums. They're really called that.
j_cheney: (Bunny)
Like all contractors seem to do, the guys got the fence 90% done, and then left.

They said they would be back first thing in the morning to finish it off, but it's almost 3:00 now. The back fence is complete, one side has a 6" gap, and the other an entire panel not installed. 2' gap next to the house and, of course, the wrought iron sections haven't been put in at all.

They changed one side (at the request of that neighbor) from posts-in to posts-out, which made about 6 inches difference as to where the fence is....and I totally forgot to account for that. My lycoris all ended up on the other side of the fence. As they're relatively expensive bulbs, I spent a goodly amount of time this morning digging under the new fence to retrieve them. They're the sort of bulb that hates being replanted, so I'm sure not seeing any blooms from them this summer. I also moved a rosemary bush, and hope the peonies there get the memo about the fence move. We'll see.

Watched some movies related to the plot bunny work today, Phar Lap and Man from Snowy River. Both still good, but they're on VHS. Wow, I've gotten spoiled. VHS is so....blurrryy....particularly really old VHS tapes. Replacements are definitely in order.
j_cheney: (Bunny)
Spent some time this afternoon cutting down the last 6 of the ornamental grasses. The first 5 weren't too bad.

But I'd saved the Pampas grass for last. Two mistakes:
1) My valiant little hedge trimmer can't handle the Pampas grass, so I have to cut it by hand, with pruning shears.
2) Although I wore welding gloves to do this, I also had on short sleeves.

I now have dozens of small scratches along the middle part of my arm.....which itch. I'm going to go take some Benadryl.

I'm glad this is done!

Silly trees

Feb. 6th, 2009 07:25 am
j_cheney: (Bunny)
Horrible shot from my cell phone, at the park yesterday...

Yes, the fluffy is going on the pear trees, a sign that leaves are going to be arriving soon. Several of my shrubs at home have started leafing out as well, and a lot of the bulbs are coming up.

I went ahead and ordered by new caryopteris plants, since they won't be in stores until August or Sept (they don't want them there until they're blooming).

I spent a good deal of time last night working on some setting stuff in Saratoga Springs. Found a photo blog with modern pictures of the Adirondack Trust Building, Menges & Curtis Apothecary (the photog is associated with that store) and the house that I'm 'using' as Mother's Hawkes' town residence (the house is currently yellow, but I've chosen to re-imagine it as light blue). Great photos of the carriage house at that residence, too.

Not much has changed at Menges & Curtis in 100 years....the same tile, woodwork, scale. Amazing. What I haven't determined is whether the soda fountain was there in 1905 (on the left side of the store as one enters.) Not there now, BTW...
j_cheney: (Bunny)
I planted about 60 tulips last fall (frivolous, I know, in an area with clay soil) but I had 6 left over. I set them on the shelf in the garage, thinking I would get to them eventually.

Time waits for no gardener. Today I noticed that they were sending up shoots.

I stuck them in a pot, plopped in some soil and set them on the windowsill. I don't usually like to force tulips because we don't have optimal lighting for that, but I guess circumstances forced me.

Cold front coming in now. Not anything compared to what the northerners are enduring.

On p. 72/425 of the 'setting check' for DD. Halfway through the re-write of Iron Shoes.

I smell...

Jan. 13th, 2009 04:03 pm
j_cheney: (Bunny)
....like wormwood.

Just spent two hours at my first 'spring' cut back, filling up two big blues and a roughneck with garden cuttings. Got all five wormwoords (which is why I smell), one of the Japanese vareigated grasses, the primary patch of TG&S chrysanthemums, the remains of the Glad bed, and various other things than needed cleaning. I still have a long way to go before spring, but the trash cans are full, so I'm done for this week.

Silly plants. I noticed that the daffodils, grape hyacinths, and hyacinths are making a go for it. Also several of the perennials are putting on green, including some of the ornamental grasses. Pansies are blooming. Evidently they all think our winter is over. Silly plants.
j_cheney: (Sword)
Yes, today I took out the russian sage. 9-years-old russian sage with happy root systems that didn't want to leave. I had a reason for this, but now I'm too tired and sore to remember what that reason was...

I actually found some of the info I needed about the race I'm co-opting, including a convenient way to get rid of the horse that really did win. The poor bloke suffered a split pastern a few weeks after winning the race, effectively removing him from the rest of his two-year-old season. So, I move it up a few weeks, blame the bad guy, and therefore have an open field. Worked out quite nicely.

Don't care about horse races that happened over a century ago? Too bad, there's someone out there who would scream bloody murder....

Oddly, I can't find the 1905 race results in the NYT. I can find 1904 and 1906.

This is rather like that missing day of Baxter Black on NPR....the one radio broadcast of his that I wanted to download. (The one that talks about the responsibility ranchers feel toward their livestock, and how the wretched cold snap of 2001? was so terrible.) For some reason, a tape of that day wasn't put on file.....

Received in the mail:
Inspector Lynley, Season 6 Supposedly, this is the end of the series, but I hope not.
A Coldwater Creek catalog with beautiful things in it.
j_cheney: (Bunny)
Note to self:
When you grow maidengrass (AKA bloody sawgrass) in your yard, remember that the grass volunteers you see might be them. PLease remember not to yank them out of the ground like dandelions. Must wear gloves.

(Yes, I forgot. I yanked, I bled--quite a bit actually, which is unusual for me. I'm not a bleeder.)

I have a whole basket full of zinnia heads now, waiting to be separated. (Zinnia "Apricot Profusion".) When I first planted them 2 years ago, I didn't expect them to self seed--but this one cultivar did, resulting in a lovely late summer border that came in just as the Coreopsis "Early Sunrise" was dying back. They turn out to be fantastic companion plants, so more are certainly in order for next year.

Also, the Chrysanthemum "Texas Gold and Silver" is doing great right now, in full bloom and crawling with bees and every other sort of polinator. Other than the pansies, it's the only game in town now.
j_cheney: (Hurry...)
So, this is the bracelet.

(Yes, it's fairly well established that I'm a lousy photographer.)

The bracelet has passed from wrist to wrist, starting in Chicago (that we know of), slapped onto [livejournal.com profile] renegade500's wrist by a woman she didn't know. It then passed to [livejournal.com profile] reudaly and from her to [livejournal.com profile] j_cheney.....

And in a couple of days it will head for Calgary where it will find a larger pool of writers to whom to jump. I don't expect it to come home with me. Mwahahaha!

In other news, hard freeze last night which means dead cannas, dead lantana, dead sweet potato vines....lots of clean-up for me. Plus it's officially time to plant tulips. Perhpas pictures tomorrow...
j_cheney: (Hidden Away)
Lifted and divided three of my German irises today. The "Dover", the "Starship Enterprise" and...that third one whose name I can't remember. Left the variegated and the Siberians in the ground.

Will split up the Starship Enterpise and the Dovers, to take some to family in Dallas area during/after Fencon. Free irises, YAY! ;o)

Now that I know how they grow, I will completely re-do where they're planted in the yard, particularly since the Starship Enterprise grew to about 5 feet tall. It was in front before, and you couldn't even see iris #3 over it. (Little 3 footer). So much to do in fall....
j_cheney: (Bunny)
Yesterday afternoon, I potted up my new Geranium "Sandrine".

They don't look like much yet. They're the dinky things in the lower left pot. The other pots contain things waiting to be transplanted into the garden (maybe next week, if the weather's good. Just so you know, the geranium will eventually look like this:

This is a fairly new cultivar, imported from France and named after the breeder's wife. Of course, when I saw the name I know I had to buy some, as one of my major settings (in several works) is the Province of Sandrine.
cut to spare the brown thumbs )
j_cheney: (Hurry...)
Well, I woke this morning with a headache, and faint migraine symptoms (didn't actually have a migraine, just the visual glitteries). I suspect this is due to either a) lack of caffeine or b) tropical depression gusvtav arriving in Oklahoma. Either way, compounded by the mist falling outside, I didn't go jogging.

I went to B&N instead hoping to find a copy of the most recent Locus, but no joy. Probably Thursday or Friday, I was told. They evidenly don't track their magazine shipments at all. I'd like to see it because a) there's reportedly a pic of the WOTF ceremony and b) July Fantasy Magazine was reviewed.

(More on each)
A) I just want to know how the pictures came out. I managed to get in the middle, where my overlarge form should have been mostly hidden by those below me.
B) Don't know if my story even got mentioned but I was curious, especially since mine appeared at the last moment of the last week of July. No mention is better than a bad mention, though.
ETA: If you've seen it and it's bad, don't tell me...

The foundation I like is being discontinued. Figures. (Insert eye roll here) I managed to score a couple more bottles at Target at 75% off, though. Won't have to buy foundation till next fall.

And finally, my less yard-industrious neighbor now has a child of the green monster lurking in their front beds, overgrowing their climbing roses and annuals.

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J. Kathleen Cheney

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