Saturday, March 6, 2010

Lending a helping hand

One of our neighbours are desperately trying to sell their home. They recently had their driveway and walkway pressure cleaned, too bad the people doing the cleaning didn't cover the ixora's lining their walkway to the front door.

The chlorine defoliated the ixoras completely, leaving dead skeletons, where there was normally a nice low evergreen hedge.

Their garden services wanted to charge them a fortune to replace the 12 ixora's. Everyone in our Cul de Sac knows I am the gardener with the green thumb, so she approached me out of desperation. Luckily I belong to the Home Depot Garden club and get all kinds of deals, as well as the weekly add. Unfortunately I didn't grow any rootlings this year as I have now covered all the areas I want to cover with herbaceous plants.

I normally shy away from annuals, yes they are beautiful and colourfull, but for me its a waste of time and money to replace them after two months, especially when it gets to late March/April, it get too hot for them here.

Since she needed colour fast, I suggested some of the annuals on sale at HD. Her budget was $50. I drove to HD this morning and got some begonia flats on sale, 18 per flat, bought two pink ones and 1 white one, 4 mamey crotons (each pot had two) and a bag of red mulch to match the red mulch she already had. I divided the mamey crotons, so now I should have had 8, but one fooled me, what appeared to be a 2nd plant, was attached to the other (that is now in my litte grow house with rooting hormome). So I was short one mamey croton, and I ran out of pink begonias. So, one trip to the store later, I had two more begonias and one small croton and finished the job, swept the dirt away, then quickly washed the walkway and voila!

Here's some before and after pics.

Of course the ixora's were not just thrown away. I planted them in bags and placed them in the shade of the litchi tree, where I will water them daily and nurse them back to health. If they make it, I will replant them in my neighbour's back yard, otherwise, they'll become compost.


  1. Very impressive job, I hope that your neighbor was pleased. Do you think that the ixoras have a chance to recover?

  2. Oh yeah, she loves it. She talked to my wife and asked what gift she can get me. My wife told her no gift needed, but she insisted.

    The ixoras were quite old, the roots were deep, so I had to sever all their roots to get them out. They show some signs of growth here and there and the twigs are green on the inside.

    Since they are dormant now and its relatively cold now, they might make it if I miss them daily and keep them in the shade. They are the miniture ones. Ixora's often have nutritional deficiencies in our alkaline sandy soil.

  3. Good luck with the ixoras, please report on the outcome.

  4. Thanks, I'll let you know how they do.