Portland is enduring a record breaking winter right now and since we’re snowed/iced in there is plenty of time to update everyone on what’s been going on and been discovered in the last ten months since we took on our outdoor project.
We adopted two dogs last year. TWO of them. This has only changed our yard goals a touch. Now the fenced in area will need to be safe and useable for our new family members. Will have to make sure incoming native plants are safe for pets and remove some of the established non natives in the front that are totally poisonous to dogs.
After our site assessment, we began removing ivy and blackberry in the backyard you can see some of our Ivy journaling for our removal techniques and adjusted strategy for tackling the rest of the yard. It was important to mentally divide the plantable area into more manageable areas and so I drew a rough map (below) and as soon as we establish the true boundaries of our property I will be able to break down the larger areas (K,L,M) into sub areas.
Front Yard Update:
Check out the photo at the very top of this page again. The area directly to left of that Dawn Redwood is represented in the photo above, almost exactly one year ago. Dawn Redwood was once thought to be extinct, also named Metasequoia. Fun fact, our local arboretum has the first dawn redwood outside of China to bear cones in more than 60 million years.
Other plants identified in the front yard – Azalea, Horse Chestnut, Magnolia, Roses, California Lilac, Lily, Hibiscus, Peonies.
We bought some natives to plant this winter from the Audubon Society Plant Sale and got some of them into the ground before the weather turned icy.
Natives added to the front 11/7/16 : Salal x 2, Wild Ginger, Red Wood Sorrel, Oregon sunshine x 2 and red flowering currant.
The Oregon Sunshine was having some trouble rooting and looked not great before the winter storms, the rest of the new plants seemed healthy. Right this second they are all sitting under about a foot of snow. On the other side of the fence there is some plantable area that needs some work. We still haven’t identified plants in sections F, G, H (sits on the other side of A, B,C) but none are native.
Section A: Is Invasive free but sits under a 20 ft Invasive English Laurel. This tree’s seed spreads aggressively but provides a significant amount of privacy to our front deck/courtyard and only has to be removed for Gold Level Certification. I want to fill in with more oxalis and wild ginger because they’re both edible ground covers and native.
Section D: This small planter area between the driveway and garbage storage is completely Native. We dug out a currant like old vine plant that was intentionally planted by the previous owner and replaced them with Pacific Bleeding Heart, Early Blue Violet and Douglas Spirae on 11/19/16.