Monday, April 5, 2010

Can anyone spare some Advil?

I have a feeling that the next time my husband hears me say "Hey, I have a great idea," he's going to leave skid marks on the floor trying to run for cover.

We got the landscape plan for our backyard and went on a plant-buying spending spree last weekend. We purchased all three of the trees in the design (two East Palatka hollies and one weeping yaupon holly), along with three coonties, and about a dozen each of muhly grass, flax lily and bulbine, a hardy little clumping groundcover with dainty orange and yellow blossoms.

Matilda, our truck, was completely full. But, when we got home and laid out all the plants where they are supposed to go according to the design, it was somewhat disheartening. They barely made a dent in our now bare desert of a backyard!

On top of that, it is taking a lot longer to plant everything than we anticipated. Not only do we have to slice openings in the weed mat fabric that we laid over our entire backyard, we also have to cut through a never-ending supply of roots. It seems like we can't stick our shovels more than two inches in the ground without encountering a root that has to be bypassed or cut in order to plant. It took nearly one hour to plant each of the three trees. Some of the smaller, 1-gallon plants are taking 15 minutes or more apiece. We put in about 17 hours on the yard from Good Friday through Easter Sunday. At this rate, we'll be retired by the time we finish the entire yard!

Despite the discouragement, we have planted enough to see how beautiful our new landscape will eventually be. Even with only about 20% of the backyard plants installed, we can now visualize the finished design of meandering pathways surrounded by densely clustered groundcovers, flower-filled shrubs and our small native holly trees. We will get it done, and then we will enjoy a  nice long sit on our soon-to-be purchased garden bench near the bird feeders.

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