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Spring on hold, but productive weekend of work; Incredible AtLarge Sale!

Monday, February 18, 2013 by  
Filed under Daily Blog

February
18
2013

Well, Mother Nature decided to finish off our otherwise very mild Central Florida winter with a cruel exclamation point: a late season hard freeze.

A small swatch of my backyard. 8+ hours below freezing last night left everything covered in frost.

A small swatch of my backyard. 8+ hours below freezing last night left everything covered in frost.

One of my neighbors has an awesome Davis Instruments Vantage Vue Wireless Weather Station, which automatically sends its data to the internet every few seconds. I totally want one of those weather stations, which shows how old I’m getting. Anyway, last night in my subdivision we were below freezing by 11:00 PM, and this morning as I type this at 7:00 AM it’s currently 27° (F).

Eight hours below freezing–especially when all the plants were lulled into an active growing phase by the otherwise mild winter temperatures–is devastating. I don’t even want to think about all the plants we’re going to lose, and even those that make it are going to look horrible for many months as they try to recover. The grass, which looked amazing, is going to be brown until summertime.

I really thought we were going to finally make it one season without a freeze. Oh well, there’s nothing I can do about it. I’ll stop whining now. I know those of you in harsh winter climates are about to jump through your screens and strangle me!

I didn’t let the cold weather this past weekend stop me from working on my project list. Since my last spring project update we’ve accomplished a tremendous amount of work…

I got the garage and bike shop completely cleaned and re-organized. I added some new shelving out there to better organize my fertilizers, paint and some other household items, and that made a world of difference. I’m kicking myself for waiting so long to add those shelves!

I dug up the banana plants by the pond and got them to the curb. Man, those suckers were heavy! I then prepared the bed for the three new Foxtail palms that will replace the banana plants. Getting the big palms back there is going to be quite a job.

All the mulching is done. We can plant our annuals as soon as the weather will allow (probably next weekend). I’m sure glad I didn’t plant the annuals a couple of weeks ago, as they would be dead now. A few of my neighbors planted their annuals early, and–covered or not–after eight hours with temperatures under 32° (F) those suckers are history.

Lisa and I got all the windows and screens washed and streak-free yesterday. That was a big job, but what a difference!

I also fixed the backyard gate, which had developed a crack in the mounting hardware. The crack happened because a lot of force was required to open and shut the gate thanks to the thick grass. We added a stone transition to alleviate that problem, and now the gate is easy to open and close.

All the outdoor lighting has been cleaned, checked for proper motion detection operation and bad bulbs were replaced as required. I also replaced some solar lights around the pond, and installed a fresh set of batteries in the existing fixtures.

There’s not much left to do now. The remaining tasks (with the exception of the palm transport and planting) are not physically difficult, so I’ll be resuming my cycling and mountain biking training this week. The only possible issue is my wrist is killing me. Washing the windows may not have been the smartest move (but I did try to use my left hand as much as possible). Even though I was active over the past three weeks, it’s not at all the same as cycling. I’m going to be hurting out there for awhile!

I’ll sign off with my updated project list, but before I do that I wanted to let everyone know that AtLarge Nutrition is having a 3-day sale, and it’s insane! I can’t believe the discounts they are offering, and each day they are different. You do not want to miss out on this one! Three days only, so check out the details and pick your day (or days) to save.

Here’s where the project list now stands.

These items have been completed: 🙂

  • Pressure wash the paver driveway and walkway
  • Pressure wash the sidewalks and street-side gutters and back patio
  • Pressure wash the backyard fence (front facing)
  • Pressure wash the house and the rain gutters
  • Pressure wash the backyard fence (back facing)
  • Pressure wash back patio
  • Thoroughly clean grill
  • Pressure wash and clean all patio furniture
  • Fertilize all plants, trees, fruit trees, palms and flowers (front yard)
  • Check function of automatic irrigation system for peppers, herbs and tomatoes
  • Weed all flower beds (front yard)
  • Trim all plants, trees, fruit trees and palms (front yard)
  • Clean and adjust all outdoor security cameras
  • Fertilize all plants, trees, fruit trees, palms and flowers (back yard/pond)
  • General pond maintenance (replace/clean filters, check auto-fill/timer function, adjust rocks, adjust pond and path lighting etc.)
  • Trim all plants, trees, fruit trees and palms (back yard/pond)
  • Weed all flower beds (back yard/pond)
  • Spread 5 yards of mulch (back yard/pond)
  • Re-design and add plants to flower bed to right of walkway (where the Queen palm was removed)
  • Install stone walkway leading into backyard at fence gate.
  • Clean all exterior windows/screens
  • Clean all outdoor lighting fixtures, check motion sensors, replace bulbs as needed
  • Spread 10 8 yards of mulch (front yard)
  • Clean and organize entire garage/bike shop
  • Remove banana plants by pond

Remaining to do:

  • Caulk and touch up paint exterior of the home
  • Check entire sprinkler system for coverage and leaks, adjust/repair as required (10 zones)
  • Select and plant this year’s crop of peppers, herbs and tomatoes
  • Plant Foxtail Palms where banana plants were removed
  • Plant hundreds of annuals and assorted other plants
  • Wash automobiles and do full Zaino treatment

John Stone Fitness Comments

2 Responses to “Spring on hold, but productive weekend of work; Incredible AtLarge Sale!”
    • Yeah, same wrist. It’s bothered me on and off for quite some time, but this time it’s my wrist and my arm.

      I think I’m going to give it a week of rest with anti-inflammatory meds. If that doesn’t help, then I’ll be making a trip to the doctor or perhaps even a chiropractor.

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