Plan A was hijacked by my brown thumb. All the plants I had recently put on the manure pile on the back retaining wall had shriveled and died. All were bee pollinators. I went online to see what was available to replace them up at Annie's in Richmond. Thanks to my visits to the monarch butterfly center at Ardenwood Farms, and the recent bee talk at the library, milkweed was high on my list.
Annie's had it in stock, but would not ship till Friday. So I switched gears and decided to drive up there. It's more than 50 miles. I had not counted on it also being some of the worst non-commute traffic evah. 60 miles, almost all freeways, took from 11 am to 1:30 pm.
Annie's is the go-to nursery in the Bay Area. I don't know how many acres they have up there, but it's massive. And well set up. Every table has a row number and table letter. Scattered around the place are lecterns with a book listing all the Latin names and which row/table the plants are on. There are usually several flats worth of each.
This may or may not be Annie. This shows about 1/10th of the gardens.
Probably not Annie.
Several varieties of milkweed were listed, the hybrid from UCDavis [Asclepias speciosa 'Davis'] was marked as water wise (drought tolerant). It was on table 29D I think. I looked up and row 28 was right in front of me. The milkweed plants were small, but there were a lot of them ranging from tiny to 4" high. I loaded 5 into my cart. Next on my list was Bee Balm [Monarda hybrida ‘Bergamo'] which was on 27F, behind me. These were a bit bigger, 5-6", I took 5 of them. And just because the yarrow in my front garden has been on agan off again, I found a pair of tiny ones hidden in the edible section - Yellow Yarrow [Achillea ageratum ‘Moonwalker’].
Annie also makes compost from grape seed, and her own blend of soil. I have more compost than I need, but added two 2 cubic feet bags of soil to the cart. Or maybe it was cubic yards.
Got those tallied by a lovely young woman named Maya, and then into the office to pay up.
Went home by the Bay Bridge and 101 instead of the slower than mole asses East Bay. $5 toll, good thing I keep the Fasttrack on the windshield. I-80 from 580 to the bridge was at the speed limit, but the toll "maze" approach was a mess because the way they have the lanes marked was done by the same people who created the Mystery Spot. And then the metering lights were on once you got past the toll booth.
It was slow across the bridge to Treasure Island, but mostly clear sailing the rest of the trip. Home by 4.
Needed to relax after all that driving. Spook was hiding but Spot was at the laundry room window when I came in.
There was garbage and recyclables to take out, done in several trips. Plopped the two very heavy bags of soil into the wheel barrow, and carted that back to the wall. Pulled out the lavender plants, saw that the roots had fused, so those went into the yard recycle bin.
Dumped both bags of soil where the lavender had been, and made a kind of container garden without an actual container.
Took a break, then out again to plant a row of milkweed and a row of bee balm. Finally, soaked one of the little square planter cut-outs by the driveway and planted the yarrow in it. I was surprised how deep the soil is in there.
Watered everything, and then more garbage collection and bin wheeling.
Dinner was the last piece of steak, the last of the baked beans on top of green peas. Thin mint ice cream and cherries for dessert.
Watched some Weather Channel, and the news. They are still following up on fires.
One item which amazes me is the Trump-Kim meeting, scheduled for Tuesday (tomorrow our time). On the one hand it's a massive case of "it takes one to know one", but on the other hand it is an epic bid for peace not seen since the Berlin wall came down. For all his other idiocy, this and tightening the crews on Iran are genius bits of diplomacy.
Plans for tomorrow: