Saturday, May 28, 2011

Holy Crack

I had this vague recollection about asking if we needed to stabilize the riser for the shower head to some part of the framing. Nah. It's galvanized pipe. It's not going anywhere. Praise be. I was able to spin the riser right out of the broken metal "T" and pull that part out of the wall without having to take out half a wall of tile.

Holy crack! Would you look at that. Thanks a lot Price Pisster. What kind of crap metal pipe are you making in China these days? I could barely see the crack in one of the plastic pex tubing water lines and couldn't find the other. This crack in what should be steel of some sort is enormous.

And of course I could not buy a new metal "T" separate and had to buy the whole kit again. And wouldn't you know it, the the threaded fittings for the water lines were different than the same kit from a couple of years ago. That required another trip to town for the new size fittings.

Anywho, the shower's water lines are repaired and it wasn't a total nightmare. No more dripping of any kind. The re-tiling can commence.

There is another type of crack in my life. It might be said I am prone to plant crack. It helps that I am on friendly terms with a number of enablers. Frances of Fairegarden was bearing gifts when she visited last week. A lovely new deciduous azalea was added in the garden to be.

I planted it along the path that will follow along the base of the slope below the scenic byway. It is in the right bottom of this picture, just before you get to the Bosnian Pine, Pinus leucodermis, that I picked up last fall. And if you look closer you will see another Bosnian Pine further along in what was the old temporary pathway around a rubbish pile that got moved for a planting.

Amazing how quickly the new candles will orient themselves to the sun after lying down in the truck for the ride home. They'll straighten up in no time.

Now this time I didn't get just one. I bought two more Bosnian Pines. These are being planted for winter interest and winter screening from the scenic byway. I'm getting used to being part of the scenery, but it still freaks me out a little when people gawk as they drive by.

I will need to get a bit more sun to this third pine by taking out some lower branches on some of the nearby maples.

It is hard to tell by looking from a distance, but I have been busy planting things for the last four years in the garden to be.

There are all kinds of things growing in among the lush, hosta and dwarf crested iris.

And more hosta

And more hosta. I don't pay good money for hosta. The dealer lives next door.

It is much more dangerous going to nurseries. That is when my plant crack habit can get the better of me. I have been fondling this Seven Son Flower, Heptacodium miconioides, since last fall. One day at the nursery I couldn't resist and it followed me home.

Other times freebies like this Curly Willow, Salix matsudana, from the Soiree at Kalamazoo can find their way home with me. I think plants just naturally gravitate towards me.

Now where did these Hardy Begonia, Begonia grandis, come from? Oh yes, they fell out of the ground at a garden I helped clean up as a volunteer last fall. I am pushing their hardiness up here. One winter survived. Time will tell.

I bought this yellow leaved Smokebush, Cotinus coggygria four years ago. I did move it to more sun when it turned green, but this has to be one of the slowest growing things in the garden to be. I suppose there's no rush.

The Chamaecyparis pisifera 'Gold Mop' right below the front porch seem to have a little more get up and go.

I bought a Kniphofia in a four inch pot four years ago. It's getting big now, dividable. Every time I saw a picture of them I craved one. Now that I have one I'm not sure I like it. I know I don't like where it is and it will have to be moved at some point.

Now my native Rattlesnake Master, Eryngium yuccifolium I like. The white flower heads are more subtle than the red and yellow combo of the Kniphofia and much longer lasting.

The garden to be really is coming along. This is only a small bit of what is out there in the lush. There are also daffodils, iris and daylilies and perennials of all kinds. I've planted viburnum, azalea, rhododendron, hydrangea two kind, weigela, bamboo, duetzia, spirea and aesculus to name a few more. All of them just wee little things. I can't afford the good stuff yet.

But one day soon the garden to be will arise from the lush to become my garden, Ku'ulei 'Aina.


Pomaika`i said...

Alas, I also have found Price Pfister's quality to be pfiss pfoor, also. I save up, then buy Moen. I hate plumbing problems more than electrical ones.
I salute your stalwart efforts to remedy flaws that were not of your making. Your garden is captivating in its beauty. Thanks for the great photos.
Mahalo nui loa

Les said...

Speaking as a fellow plant crackhead, I spent Friday trying to squeeze more plants into an already overcrowded garden. I really must remember to only buy plants I have a place for, but what fun would that be.

Wondering Woman said...

I'm addicted too..... come home with the goods and then have to spend a couple of days hunting for a place to squeeze them in. Always say I'm not going to do it anymore but I'm too weak. When my Kniphofia first bloomed I thought they looked too stiff and didn't blend well with their surroundings, but now I love them and crave more...... uh oh

Siria said...

Hi Christopher! Thank goodness you were able to fix that cracked pipe without taking out more tiles. I can't believe that happened! How can you prevent that from happening again in the future with cold winters? Your garden is looking so lush and beautiful! I love your new Seven Son Flower tree. Can't wait to see it in bloom.

Nancy said...

Went out this morning and found the deer had neatly cut off kniphofia blooms - looked as if the stems had been sliced with a knife! Hope your garden is fenced.

Lola said...

Hi Christopher, I'm so glad you could fix the problem without much destruction. Now for the re-fix.
Your garden looks so lovely. I like the new plants that you have added. The garden to be sure is looking good. It will be eye candy for sure.
I've gotten to where I only purchase plants if I know where it is going. Of course gifts are always welcome & a good home they will be in. I've stuck a seed here & there till there is no more room. Of course the finished Back Corner Garden has lots more room now so I've put veggies there till I know for sure what will take up permanent home there in the future.
I got my first 2 tomatoes off the Patio plant today. Hooray. Will pick bush bean & cut off the bell pepper/banana pepper in the a.m.
It's so hot here. We really need rain bad. Too much watering costs too much to keep it up. So only water what is necessary.
Hoping you & Mom have a wonderful Holiday weekend. Get some much needed rest.

Christopher C. NC said...

Hi Pomaika'i. Maybe after all those years doing irritation systems in the desert of Kihei my plumbing zen is pretty good. My new garden is coming along.

Les it will be a long time before I have to squeeze plants in. As I keep planting and things grow the hope is one day they will all merge and a garden will show up instead of this planting and weeding around things going on now.

Wondering Woman maybe the kniphofia just needs the right spot and the right neighbors.

Siria I put a bit more insulation in the wall were I saw some open space. The real plan however is to put an electric heat tape in the plumbing box below that can be plugged in in the winter. I will put the thermostat right next to the outer wall before the insulation goes in so it will kick on when the outer wall gets cold enough. The heat will rise and prevent this from happening again I sure hope.

Nancy our hunted country deer are few and far between and scared of human habitats. We get occasional nibbles on things and that's about it.

Lola I was most happy about the relatively easy fix too. Of course after the re-tiling I have to re-insulate and close up the plumbing box, so this project ain't done yet. Sounds like you veggie garden is doing good. I think I look at mine too much. Seeds are sprouting but it feels like it is just sitting there.

Fairegarden said...

Hi Christopher, your habit is shared by so many, nothing to be done but go with it. I love those new pines, they will be the perfect privacy screen for the road gawkers. I read onward and saw you are leak free with your shower project. Great! Onward, love the hosta dealer next door!