Friday, April 29, 2005

My Long Perennial Bed

All in all, my perennial bed worked out quite well in 2004, its first season, helped by more annuals than it will have in 2005 or future years. A grass path divides it into a rear inverted-U bed of 3’ width, and a straight front bed of 4½’ width. The U bed is 42’ wide. It also has a mown grass path behind it, below which is the slope down to the aqueduct.

It was of course quite a lot of work, de-sodding and double-digging the whole bed, then amending the soil with peat moss, leaf mold and composted cow manure, ratios varying depending on soil conditions, material availability and whim as I went along, with a dose of Hollytone 4-6-4 added where cow manure was not.

The bed runs East-West, sitting atop a slope several feet down to the similarly situated aqueduct. Much of it gets close to full sun from April through August, but a row of very tall white pines to the South, on the far side of the aqueduct, shade it in other seasons when the sun is lower. This may be a good thing, in that it prevents premature spring thawing and frost heaves.

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