In keeping with my history of showing you the good, the bad, and the just plain down right ugly, this is my garden in May 2017.
It’s one ugly garden.
We started the year
We started the year by watching a few leaves of grass emerge from the their winter sleep. I looked out over the garden and thought, “there’s an hours work to get rid of that grass.” And then it began to rain.
And it rained. And rained.
The head gardener does not work in the pouring rain. He used to do that, but now that he no longer owns a nursery, working in the rain, late spring snow storms, and frigid temperatures no longer happens.
While it rained, the grass grew. And grew. And just plain down right exploded into growth.
So what are you looking at.
In the foreground of this picture you’ll seek to cement blocks on the left-hand side of the picture. They mark one side of the driveway, and there’s another pair to the far right in the picture you can’t see. The imaginary line between the blocks marks the area for the stone.
As you can see, the stone for this year’s dry stone wall work is laid out in front of the wall. It’s arranged with the heaviest stones closest to the wall, and the later stones away from the wall. The reason for this is that if you’re trying to pick up 100 pounds of rock, you don’t want to carry it across rocks that could break your ankle. You simply want to pick it up, turn, and place it on the wall. And yes, the head gardener moved all that rock from the pile across the driveway to the work area already this spring.
But behind the wall.
Behind the wall is the grass. The few mounds of foliage you see are the plants and everything between the plants is grass. I’m not sure where it came from, but I can tell you where it’s going.
That hour of work has probably turned into 20 hours of work. Pulling out a few grass roots has turned into digging out entire networks of grass roots with a shovel.
The young maple tree in the foreground decided, in its wisdom, to throw shoots from the bottom. This is a soft maple, so that’s to be expected. But even if one expects shoots, they’re ugly. The good news here is that a few minutes with a pruning saw will eliminate this year’s crop of shoots.
The stone walkway.
The walkway I laid last year has wintered well. There are a very few rocks that have settled and require leveling. In another week or so, I will simply lever those up and water heavily into the crack. This will force some of the stone dust between the cracks to settle under the stone and bring it back up to grade. And yes, I’ll have to be very careful about how much dust I get underneath them or I’ll wind up having to dig the whole rock out to re-level it.
I’m not particularly proud of the garden this spring, it’s really a mess. That grass is quite depressing in its exuberance for growth.
I’ll have to get back to you at the end of the month when the garden has been repaired, my back has recovered from all that digging, and I have something that I can be proud of it again.