Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Western Cedar Side Bed

My dad brought me 5 beautiful western cedar to create a small screen for the side yard and two for the bottom of the yard as accents. I love them, I can't wait to see how fast they grow. They smell great and also remind me of how TV shows use these fast growing trees in the backgrounds of scenes to make it look more wooded. 

I used a hose as a guide to shape a gradual curved bed, then edged the whole thing with a half moon edger. I got a few pieces of sod up successfully, but it was slow going. I eventually got tired of it and took the lazy approach - a combination of burying the sod upside down and spraying the grass with a quick pass of grass killer. I should have learned back in 2015 that the upside down sod method does not really work, but I was too tired to rip it all out and haul it somewhere. 

western cedar bed
Final product, western cedar screen bed

using hose to shape bed edge
I used the hose as a guide to plan out the shape of the bed

ripping up sod to form a mulch bed
Slow going trying to rip up the sod that had already rooted in

Finally have more to look at in the yard with a boxwood bed and cedar side bed

Snow in Indiana April 21, 2021

It looks like this is the last hoorah for cold weather before it will really become spring here in central Indiana. I know in the past few years we usually got at least 1 snow storm in April but I was starting to think we would avoid it this year. Sure enough, temps got down to like 25°F and we got a few inches of snow accumulation. 

I got a nice snowy photo of the front of my house on the way to work though, and by the time I got home in the afternoon it had completely melted and was warm outside. Sheesh! Just one last test for the leaves that were starting to emerge, it seems like the leaves are slow coming out this year. 

My newly planted pyramidal boxwoods in the front got some snow

Newly planted western cedar in the side of the backyard covered in snow

Moved two western cedar that I hadn't planted yet onto the covered porch to stay warm

ZZ Plant Flower

Do ZZ plants have flowers? If so, what do they look like? I've had this Zamioculcas zamiifolia houseplant for years and it's never flowered before until just now! 

The flower looks similar to a peace lily, with in inner stalk that's not all that attractive that emerges from a sheath or hood. Ready for some science? I looked up both the peace lily and ZZ plant on Wikipedia and sure enough both plants are members of the family Araceae, also known as the arum family or aroids. That explains the similar look - they are somewhat related. 

The stalk in the middle of the flower is known as the spadix and the hood around it is called the spathe. Both are clearly visible in this flowering ZZ plant photo that I just took. Pretty cool!

photo of zz plant flower
Close up photo of the ZZ plant flower. I've owned ZZ plants for years and never saw one until just now!

In case you are curious, the flower has no noticeable smell from what I can tell. It looks sorta alien because it's not something you see all the time on a ZZ plant. They can be cut off without really hurting the plant but I'm going to leave it. 

A wider photo of the ZZ plant flower showing its size and location relative to the rest of the plant.