Monday, June 4, 2012

It's Not Exactly Gardening

I'd say it's not even weeding... It's more like land clearing. That's what I've been busy with for several weeks now. I don't do it every day, of course, or I would've been done clearing the entire yard by now.

As it stands, I cleared the entire side yard from English ivy and various branches and twigs and tree trunks and even an old Christmas tree (that was a sad sight). Didn't use no RoundUp either. No, sir! It was all manual labor, tearing it all out by hand. (Yes, I know, it will grow back in a few weeks and will need to be cleared a few more times before it's gone for good). Above is just an example of what the side yard used to look like before I got started.

And this is what it looked like once I was half-way through with it (cleared half on the right; ivy on the left). A little clump of greenery is a very stubborn mint plant. I figured, it smells so nice, I'll leave it be. Its size is controlled by the very poor soil, no watering other than when it rains, and the fact that it only gets about 3 hours of sun each day.

And this is what this side of the house looked like after all the planting and mulching with leaf mold. Not much to see now, but just you wait a year or two!
This picture shows pretty much 3/4 of the side yard. Yep, it was all covered in ivy! And now it's not!!!

I also trimmed somewhat the huge Chinese fringetree bushes we have growing all along that side of the house. In the process of clearing all this mess, M discovered that one of these fringetrees had branches perfect for climbing. And I discovered some poison ivy hiding among all that English ivy and Virginia creeper (ok, so I didn't discovery the poison ivy as much as I discovered the itchy burn on my forearm the day after clearing a particularly ugly spot).

In an effort to outdo myself, I even planted some new plants - an oakleaf hydrangea, an azalea, several hostas, and ajuga. This meant I had to dig holes in the mix of red clay, rocks and broken bricks that passes for soil here. Not to mention I had to hack through thick roots. But I hacked and I dug and I brought nice compost from the pile and planted and watered and mulched. Two weeks later it's all growing well, except for ajugas, but those seem to be recovering and should be ok in another couple of weeks.

I was so tired from all this work that I swore off of planting anything else there for a while (there's still some ivy left to keep me busy). And yet today I found myself dreaming of planting maybe just a few more hostas and a rose of sharon and maybe 2-3 more azaleas. Of course, these would have to wait until next spring since it's way too hot now even with all the shade from the fringetrees and all the rains we've been getting.

In the mean time, in the veggie garden, we harvested garlic. I didn't even realize we'd have so much of it!

1 comment:

  1. One can never have too much garlic... hahahaha.

    -Oscar Valencia