Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A truly beautiful November day

So now it's Tuesday, and the contractor has told us the foundation walls will be poured tomorrow. It is just beautiful outside today, sunny, mid-50s. We'll see if tomorrow is as nice, I sure do hope so. I'm trying to maintain a positive attitude: Waiting until tomorrow will give the ground another day to dry, so maybe it won't be quite as muddy as I'm sure it is today. There, how's that for looking on the bright side?
This view is the back wall of the basement. We have to put that big window in case a fat fireman has to rescue someone from the back corner of the basement. First floor: dining area/kitchen from center to right. Bedroom to the left.

I need to write about the planting we've done at the property. My philosophy is to begin planting right away after you buy land, so that shrubs, trees, etc., will have some size to them within a couple of years. That way, everything gets a head start while we're building the house.

Tom made a border that's about 120 feet long by about 5 feet wide along the length of the driveway. It doesn't extend the entire length, but it's big enough to look like something. He spent a bunch of time stripping the sod with a machine and then removing the sod by hand. What a job that is. Then he tilled in (we bought a rototiller!) manure and peat moss and then dug in nursery planting mix to give the shrubs a boost.

The backbone of the bed is made up of four witch hazels (Hamamelis virginiana), which will be small trees eventually. I had to plant as much of the nursery stock as would fit, so there are plants in the bed that will be moved as we create more gardens next year. There are at least seven hydrangeas (probably eight) of assorted varieties, mostly 'Limelight' and three Pinky Winky. I planted probably at least a dozen perennial hibiscus: Fantasia, Plum Pudding, Martha Washington. Nine sedum Autumn Fire anchor the end of this long bed. I put in several foxgloves and a few Asclepias plants too.

Five Viburnum dentatum are spaced in a hedge perpendicular to the bed, running along our joint driveway with Jim Stevens.  That's where I put the lamium and the couple of ferns I've had in pots all this summer. My vision is to have a six-foot wall of green there someday. These shrubs also get red berries that the birds like. It's a little far from where the house is, but at least they will serve a purpose by creating a uniform hedge that will wall us in a little bit at the end of the driveway.

Tom also got the three Austrian black pines planted. They're spaced about 20 feet or so apart along the turn in that same shared drive further down to the left, looking out from the garage. The trees will someday block out the view to Mae West road, and now they've got a head start before next summer.  

My goal is to plant several more pines along the bank down beyond the ponds so that the view to the road will be blocked in both summer and winter. The bank runs down into the woods all along the ponds, and I want to plant a bunch of pines, spruce, etc., to create a visual wall, and maybe block the sound a little too, although I don't figure they will help too much.

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