Distractions and Blogging

Sometimes I have trouble documenting projects for this blog. Sometimes it is because I have gotten sidetracked and the little path I'm on doesn't seem to warrant documentation. Sometimes it can be a very quick and exciting endeavor and I don't want to bother with documentation. I'm trying to do better with this because I realize that some of the blogs I enjoy most present all sorts of small bits and bobs of original content. The more often, the better, as far as I'm concerned. I'm trying to do the same.  

The point in me relaying this is that, in the past week, as I've been awaiting some plumbing parts for my current primary focus -the master bathroom, I've been busy with some other distractions which previously might have gone unmentioned.
First, and I believe I already mentioned this, I am making new shades for the bathroom. This is the lino block I cut for this project. I am very new to block printing, and this is a large block (4x5") with a lot of ink surface. This has me fretting a bit because putting down a lot of ink is less forgiving than a more spare pattern.

As you can see this is not perfect but I guess that is the point with block printing. All those yellow lines are my chalk guidelines. They took forever to lay out but I feel I need them. I marked a center line on the top of the block which I align with the chalk. And, there are chalk lines that show me where the top and bottom of the block should fall. Someone more experienced probably only needs one starter line, I'm hoping that by the third panel I am one of those people. 

Second, I cut back the Thuja Plicata in a major way. It looks horribly bald and mangy, but was a necessary hack attack. Two things happened with these bushes. First, I wasn't paying attention and they sprouted a lot of suckers. This is very bad. 

Some of the suckers were quite large and beastly.

Others were just super plentiful. Suckers are bad because they divert energy away from the main tree. I wasn't able to completely cut these back because it would have left an enormous hole. I pruned back as much as I could on this first go and then hopefully when the lower branches of the tree fill out again, I will hack these off at the base. Clearly I was really not paying attention to the detail of these trees other than noticing that the tree (with the cluster of suckers) wasn't as tall as all the others and wondering why.
The second mistake I made with these bushes was that I sheered them, like 3 or 4 times. That is also bad. This is because pruning encourages growth at the cut which of course with sheering is only at the very outside of the tree. This can make for a lanky, bald and woody interior. The trick to cutting these bushes, I've learned, is to reach in and cut them around forming buds inside the tree. That way they can be full throughout. So I've done that and watered and given them a bit of fertilizer. Fingers crossed because right now they look really, really bad.    

Thoughts? Do tell. 

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