Monday, April 11, 2011

The Backyard Challenge

This photo shows only HALF of the backyard!




What to do!

This is a big, big space.  Lawn is out of the question.  We're not getting any younger or any richer, so the labor and cost of growing, maintaining, and mowing a lawn is not anything we'll even entertain.

Meadows are hard to establish.  The more I read about them, the more I know this.  My grandson and my daughter made an attempt late last summer to scatter a plethora of seeds I purchased online from American Meadows and they did grow.  Now, things are growing in that spot but I can't tell if they're flowers or weeds or both.

The weeds are low maintenance, drought-tolerant, and great at self-propagation.  But do we really want a yard full of weeds?  Nope!

And to leave it alone, just a wasteland of dirt with rocks and twigs and rocks and branches is a bigger eyesore than a patch of dandelions and clover.

Frank and I sit out on that deck every single morning with our coffee and just stare at the abyss.  The muse has been slow in appearing.  But I do believe I have it figured it out.  Somewhat.

Treat the backyard as four large sections and create two shrub gardens and two perennial gardens with paths that will lead us out into the woods and the trails that Frank likes to run on (and which I fully intend to start plodding through).

Our leaching fields and septic system are back here, so trees are out of the question.  But a few good shrubs and a few good perennials should do the trick.

I'll wait a bit and see if the muse agrees, should she ever decide to surface.

I'm sure the deer can't wait!


  1. It sounds as if you have a good plan. And I see the house is coming along as well. I am a Daisy with the below quiz....

  2. Oh my, what a blank slate you have and what a great opportunity. We also had a blank slate (in Bloomfield CT) in 2005 and I despaired at first looking at what the builder left us. Six years later even I have to say wow. But it's been a lot of work. I'm eager to follow your blog and see what you do!

  3. dude, if I had that kinda blank slate to work on... I would not be able to restrain myself like you two can!

  4. Mary, it's hard. Believe me. But I plant things ONCE and have to obsess about it forever before I make a decision. We'll be posting more about this soon... torn between two large gardens, a meadow garden, or a field of sunflowers.



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