This is a blog about making quilts from recycled clothes, as some of you who have already read it will attest.  Perhaps a few curious souls have checked and seen no activity lately.  Sorry!  I’ve felt more than a little guilt about this as I truly like blogging.  I also have a HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who has told me in person, by email or via Facebook that you enjoy the blog.

So why the pause and what is so completely different?  Well, depending on where you live, you may have noticed much nicer weather lately.  Though not conducive to quilting, it has been just right for a Plant Rescue.

A neighbor moved away, selling the house next door.  The new owner is completely renovating the property, including the rear yard.  After 14 years of admiring my neighbor’s garden (particularly a lovely dwarf red maple), I was horrified to hear it would be gutted.  So began Plant Rescue.

The new owners gave me permission, via their construction foreman, to rescue the plants.  Here’s what the yard looked like, from my house, in mid March

Plants are dormant but you can see some evergreens on the left. Click photo for a better view. The red maple is to the right of the grill.

One fine warm weekend, I got permission to enter, and dug up the first round of plants.  Then I had a stack of stuff in my yard

I dug until I ran out of containers and burlap to temporarily house and swaddle them.  Careful readers of Patwig’s Blog will recall my determined preference to reuse materials, so I used all the empty plastic containers I could find.  I do confess to buying two rolls of burlap at a local hardware store because I had none.

Funny how from my window the plants appeared smaller than they turned out to be.  Here you see what looks like three shrubs

But once I dug in I yielded five plants, the lighter-leaved plant on the left, which I resettled in my yard

Andromeda (Pieris japonica) is ill from a lace bug infestation, which apparently hit NYC hard last year (who knew?) but I'm taking a chance because it is perfect for this spot.

The smaller plant in the middle was actually two Skimmia.  Once they were out I saw the delightful buds of another specimen I have long admired, a blue “Big Daddy” hosta, and lastly the rhododendron on the right.  All of these I had to dig out another day due to lack of burlap.

A gardening friend (GF) dropped some extra burlap over my fence one day, enabling the quest.  Out came two Rose of Sharon, a verbena, two climbing roses, a Montauk daisy (which my GF tells me can be wildly propagated), too many astilbe to count, bunches of iris, a Cotoneaster (one of my all-time-favorite plants) and, of course, the Big Guy himself, the red maple.

Can anyone explain that trunk? Click for a closer look at it.

I  pruned the Maple.  I dug around the dripline of the Maple.  But there was no way I was going to move the Maple.  Enter the very lovely construction foreman and my nicest asking and voila,  Friday before Easter, an opening was made in the fence

A hole was dug by Patwig

I knew there was a reason I wrote "ditch digger" under my high school yearbook photo.

And three workers, with a rope and a two-by-four, carried the Maple to its new home.

Words cannot begin to express how grateful I was to these men, but luckily, there’s cash.

I’m glad you’ve made it this far, but I think it’s time to stop.  Some readers may have unanswered questions, such as what was in the place where I dug the deep hole?   What about that long list of other plants?  Do I have room in my yard for them?  Unfortunately, I do not.  This is just Part One of Plant Rescue.  Part Two will appear after the plants are installed in their new home.  In the meantime, the long-awaited My First Commission (MFC) will return.

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