Sunday, March 09, 2008

A pruning weekend

“Hey buddy, where's my food?”

This week the temperature here in South Florida went from the mid-eighties on Thursday to the mid-forties on Saturday. What is going on??? Saturday morning we got a nice thunderstorm as a cold front passed by and the rest of the weekend was nice and cool. This probably was the last cold front of the year.

With the ground wet from the rain, I decided the best way to use my gardening time was pruning the Shooting Star and the Brunfelsia trees. My father has always pruned his trees in February. He feels that all pruning should be done before Lent begins so, by his calculations, I am already late! This custom was passed down to him by my grandfather who was a farmer. I don’t know if there is any scientific fact behind it but we have always followed the custom.

The Shooting Star tree is a very aggressively-growing tree and this year I was very aggressive pruning it.
I also started working on my last wild corner in the garden. I know what you are thinking, “How did I let it get this way, almost overrun with weeds?” My answer is this is Florida and in a blink of an eye weeds take over. Before you report me to the gardeners' union, I do have a real job that takes most of my time. Gardening is supposed to be my hobby but lately it feels more like a second full-time job.

My dilemma is what to do with this bed??? Last year it was full with Bolivian Sunset, a beautiful red flowering plant that reseeds every year and looks great around this time of the season but not this year (maybe it has something to do with these killer weeds).
I have decided to put my White Bat plant (the exotic plant my wife gave me for Christmas) in the center and fill the rest of the bed with a collection of different Begonias that I have in pots. This corner of the garden gets lots of shade and the ground tends to be wetter. What do you think?


Yolanda Elizabet said...

Yes it is time to prune again. I've been pruning a lot too lately. I think it's a nice idea to put that gorgeous plant your wife gave you in combination with begonias in that corner of your garden. Begonias can stand a bit of shade.

Jeanette said...

Hi Rusty. Yep its time to prune again, I gave my roses a light prune yesterday but we prune back the roses June_july, then all the rest after the frost have gone.Im sure the weeds grow overnight, looks like some more Oxailis,and wild violets,oh dear what a curse to get rid of.
I think the Begonia's will make a lovely display in that corner . they like a little protection from the elements. (Weather)
happy gardening

the monse said...

Hi, Rusty! I just stumbled across your blog, and boy am I grateful. I just bought a house in Fort Lauderdale, and I'm starting my South Florida gardening adventure. I'm a novice gardener, but come from a long line of Alabama farmers and gardeners. I've had success in the past with gardens in the Pacific Northwest and in Alabama, but I've never tried tropical gardening. I am glad I can count on your blog for help! Keep up the great work.

Cabs said...

Looks like you have some great things going on here. I'll look forward to seeing it progress. But White Bat plant? I have never heard of that one!

Surya said...

What a busy weekend. I like your Begonia odorata.

Wicked Gardener said...

Oooohh! Bat plant - that will look cool! And pink begonias? Yeah! Yeah! I can't wait to see how that turns out. (I kinda wish I thought of that combo myself . . .)