Tuesday, 20 October 2015

prairie planting

The creation of the final third and fourth sections of our prairie beds is underway...

The first phase is still looking really colourful and the varied forms of the different plants is creating a lot of 'architectural' interest. Those insects still around are finding a late season source of food that will, with luck, carry them through their winter rest. Our pheasant population hunt among the foliage for invertebrates and seeds, confident under the cover of the foliage.

Around one third of the eventual finished extra space is now complete having been dug, de-rubbled and weeded. And, after rain and while the soil is still warm, a weed-suppressing and moisture retaining coat of chippings has been added. The manhole in the leading curve has been raised and was adorned by a penesetum in a birthday pot after this photo was taken.

There will be a serpentine path wide enough for the mower that will separate beds 3 and 4 and this is slowly appearing.

And Jill is already planting those perennials and grasses that respond to autumn transplanting. Monty was moving hemp agrimony in BBC Gardeners' World this week. A feature of our prairie beds will be hemp agrimony's exuberant American cousin Joe-Pye Weed. We'll be moving ours into their new positions this week and in doing this also clearing the overcrowded 'vegetable garden' so that development work there can also be undertaken during the winter.

In the meantime I'll be back on the case again tomorrow, digging my target 'two spits' as I creep towards the all too-distant finish line....

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