Posted by: Brenda Kula | July 1, 2009

What I’ve Been Up To


For those of you wondering if I’ve fallen off the face of the earth, no I haven’t. But some of you may recall my fall backwards over some piles of deck lumber nearly five weeks ago. Well, the injury to my left foot has continued to keep me out of the garden. So I haven’t posted much.

Those of you whose blogs I normally read, please try and understand how sad it’s been not feeling well enough to get outside and work in my sanctuary. So I haven’t been visiting many gardening blogs either. It is just hard to be faced with seeing such beauty when I can’t participate. Yeah, I guess that’s being a bad sport…

However, upon seeing a specialist yesterday, I now have a steel boot that goes up to my knee on my foot, which enables me to get around with less pain. I will have this on for three weeks, and then they will reevaluate.

Because I am virtually indoors most of the time, I am continuing to blog on my decorating/craft blog,, because at least I can enjoy still taking photos while inside. So I may not post much on this blog until fall, when, hopefully, I will have the full use of my foot back. I was told it is a difficult injury to heal. But at least I’m not hobbling around leaning on a cane anymore. There is that!

So, to answer those who’ve emailed to ask about me, I do appreciate your kind concern. It meant a lot to me that you cared. Sorry I have been remiss in my gardening endeavors.

Posted by: Brenda Kula | June 24, 2009

Unknown Tree Specimen


I have a tree of some sort in this container that my neighbor gave to me. I don’t think it is a tree that normally grows in a yard. But one in a pot. In the house or not, I don’t know.

Does anyone recognize this tree?


Posted by: Brenda Kula | June 18, 2009

Sago Palms & More On The Deck


Sago Palm fronds in the early morning sunlight above.

Robert has brought in some lattice to build something to hide all these meters on my neighbor’s wall and on mine across the way. Being on the corner, I have both stuck to my wall. He’s thinking of covering the brick except for the part of the meters the company readers have to get into. Maybe I could grow vines or have shelves on it. This is what I’m thinking will be my “designated” living room area of the deck. This is the side just outside the east French doors.


This is it looking from the south angle. See how he finished out the area around my shrubs? I am liking that.


Yes, I know. I still have cable wires dangling from the roof. Hopefully this will get hidden soon.


This is the side facing the north. This would be my “designated” kitchen area. Maybe a gas grill, a table and chairs, etc.


My yard is still a complete mess. Things are all jammed up together.


He is busy the next few days on another job. But he thinks next week he will probably stain the deck. Let’s hope we manage to kill the tree roots with the Round Up he’s used!

We have another project for him inside the house. Then he will get to the gazebo plans before too long.



Posted by: Brenda Kula | June 16, 2009

Adding To The Deck Thoughts


Here is what Robert is working on now. Isn’t this adornment around the tree pretty? It will give the trees room to grow and a place for me to plant. Yes, Charlie Ross is sneaking a peak.

I’m as surprised as anyone. I just let him build and see what’s going to happen next.


Of course now that we’re coming down the stretch, we’re pondering adding to the project…

See this area where the deck ends near the tools? Maybe extend the deck to build a gazebo?


A gazebo shaped in what I think is an octagon that Robert put around the trees? This is his thinking.

Oh yes, the tree we’ve been feverishly trying to kill. To eradicate the many shoots that have sprung up all over the yard…

I figured out what it was. Remember it was just in front of that building equipment. It was/is a black locust, and apparently hard to kill.

Black locust reproduces vigorously by root suckering and stump sprouting to form groves (or clones) of trees interconnected by a common fibrous root system.  Physical damage to roots and stems increases suckering and sprouting, making control difficult.  Black locust clones easily spread in quality and restorable natural areas. Although black locust produces abundant seeds, they seldom germinate.

Mowing and burning are only effective in reducing the further spread of young shoots from a clone or parent tree.  To kill a clone, cutting alone is ineffective.  Herbicides applied to the stems or cut stumps spread into the root system and provide better control.  From mid-June to August hand sprayer application of 6.25% glyphosate solution (15:1 water:glyphosate) to stumps cut near the ground has been used by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Region V State Parks Resource Management Office.  Resprouting and suckering from dense clones may require follow up treatment after a few years*. 

*Because plants that appear to have been killed can resprout even several years after treatment with herbicide, annual monitoring should be conducted and follow-up treatments made as needed.

Anyone have experience with this horrid, despicable tree?

Posted by: Brenda Kula | June 11, 2009

Basic Deck Floor Finished


Well, here’s the basic shape of the deck. Not quite finished. Not stained. But your get the idea. There’s Abi with sand from the electrical saw on her whiskers. And Clyde in the background. Poor Clyde has been being taunted of late by a group of mockingbirds. They better not hurt my handsome boy!

One problem. The tree stump grinder man has yet to come calling. So we have tiny trees growing through the deck.


I don’t know how I’m going to furnish this deck yet. Probably with a lot of what I already have. Not to that point yet. But every time I go out there, my mind gets busy decorating.


I love how Robert took the wood design in all directions. Gave it quite a personality of its own.


Look, the four o’clocks are blooming up by the front gate arbor!


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