Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Spring plans

According to the National Weather Service, Mitchell airport got 6.7" of snow yesterday. My condo is five minutes from the airport. Kudos to our snowplowing service (who were plowing my actual driveway when I finally got home last night) for getting it moved. The drive home wasn't horrible, though it took twice as long as usual.

Today, we'll see the other side of freezing for the first time in weeks. In fact, it's supposed to stay that warm for a few days, before we go back into the deep freeze for a bit. But the snow events are (mostly) getting weaker (freezing rain/slush for Thursday) and the cold, warmer (highs of twenty above zero).

Spring may well be on the way.

In that hopeful thinking vein, I thought I'd list some spring/early summer plans/project. You all know how I love a good list.

1. Put a coat of paint on the patio furniture. I have all the supplies; as I've mentioned before, it got cold too quickly to get this done in the fall. As soon as it is warm enough for the paint to stick (assuming we don't still have snow on the ground at that point), I'll paint.

2. Find and purchase a garden hose. The spigot is on the front of the building, behind the (going to be pulled out) juniper bush, on the other side of the air conditioning unit from the patio. The previous owners left the four foot joiner hose that ran from the spigot to the patio gate, to which they attached their real hose (they left the hose, and a matching piece in the basement, as well, but it's the really old, heavy, rubber monster and I've gifted it elsewhere). I just need maybe 20 feet of lightweight hose; all I need to water are the patio urns.

3. Buy/rent a pressure washer. The patio desperately needs to be pressure washed. Once the snow is done for good, the parking bay could use it as well. Have to do the analysis on this; if this is to be an annual cleaning, it may be cheaper in the long run to buy the washer.

4. Write to the association and ask that the #@^%&% juniper bushes be pulled out. They are messy, ugly (and only my unit has them) and I'm a bit allergic to their sap. It took three calls to the management company to get them trimmed last year, and I'm over it. I believe I have to pay for removal, but the association pays for the replacement arborvitae.

5. Deal with the clematis. It's gorgeous, but it's behind the juniper, and blocks the electric meter. I plan to cut it all the way down, but wonder if I can dig up the roots and replant it in front of the patio wall? It will, however, get much stronger direct sunlight in that spot. At least there, I can anchor the trellis to the wall and let it go to town.

6. Plant stuff. Heirloom tomatoes in one urn, Pretty flowers in the other two. A small hanging basket for the small shepherd's hook that is in one urn and one for the hook on the dividing fence. Maybe another small pot for basil.

7. Get lit. Check to see if the lower part of the patio light is actually supposed to contain a light bulb. Clean the fixture. Change the #@$$^% CFL to a real light bulb. Get a string of cute globe lights and figure out how best to string them up outside.

8. Figure out waterproof storage for hose and charcoal/grill stuff for outside. Smallish storage bench?

9. Make a tablecloth for the patio table. Look around for a deal/coupon on laminated fabric, figure out if it is cheaper to make the tablecloth or buy one.

10. Fire up the grill, cook a steak, pour a glass of lemonade and relax.

Anything else I should think about?

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