Names have been changed to protect the innocent...and my husband...and me...but not the dog. His name is Dexter.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Garden of Idiot

This past weekend was our first attempt this year at regaining control of our wayward yard. Looking at it, it's hard to believe that it really has gotten better since our purchase of this house seven years ago. Really, it has! Sadly, it still has far to go. This year we have decided to take the bull by the horns, so to speak, and make some serious landscaping improvements.

As we all know, I'm a bit of a hippie. In a good way, though. So the concept of xeriscaping has an obvious appeal to one such as myself. But to say that gardening does not come naturally to me is like saying Super Dell is just a little bit quirky. A HUGE understatement. I don't have much of a green thumb, although I have managed to keep most of my house plants alive. My Dad grew up in East LA where they mostly grow cement and barbed wire and I think I inherited his natural ability to landscape. But things, they are a'changin' people!

Seeing as we live in a desert, I thought some drought tolerant landscaping would be a good idea and set off on my journey of discovery. But I should warn you that there is a lot, I mean A LOT, of information on the old Internet. And it was slightly overwhelming. Slowly and painfully I sorted through this information and found a program called Rip Your Strip. Now, when I first read that title I was a bit leery of going to that particular site. It sounds like some sort of waxing trend that I just was not interested. But it has actually provided me with the most helpful information when it comes to xeriscaping.

Last Friday night I was finally able to come up with a landscaping plan that we could actually accomplish and hopefully have some success at. Saturday morning dawned bright and early and with a soccer game that needed coaching. But after that, there was nothing standing in our way of gardening bliss. I mowed the lawn and CG edged. We had a little pow wow and decided that while he cleaned up the clippings, I would get the flower bed "prepped" for planting so that when we bought the plants they could go straight in and not die waiting for us. Great!

And then I stood in front of the flower bed trying to figure out what in the world I was supposed to do to "prep" it. Hmmm......? It's not easy being an idiot, I tell you. So, first I started with a tiny shovel to remove weeds, which didn't really work. Then I switched to a rake and raked stuff out. It was lovely, but still not prepped to my liking. Then I switched to a shovel. That helped a bit. Except our flower bed was rock hard. I ended up going back and forth between the rake and the shovel and made slow and painful progress. Until I broke with rake with my awesome powerfulness. But, hey, I got my grapes planted at least. After CG took pity on me and dug the holes because I don't know how to use a shovel.

Yes, indeedy. This summer is sure to be full of gardening adventures. Wish me luck. I will need it.


Rebecca said...

Congrats at your gardening attempt!! This year I planted MY very first garden. In years past I "helped" my Dad with his garden (he was the life long master gardener - and I was the cheep labor).

So far all of my potato plants have broken the dirt surface - and just yesterday I noticed little tiny corn popping up. I still need to plant my squash. It's not much - but it's mine and I am very proud of it.

Kristina P. said...

Good luck! I know I would definitely need it.

hairyshoefairy said...

I'm still dying laughing at the Super Dell analogy. I think my gardening skills are pretty on par with yours. That's why when NYDD gives me plants as a gift it comes with the deal that he takes care of them. Or else they die a quick painful death.

Erin said...

When I read Rip Your Strip I thought of waxing too.

Good luck with your gardening adventures! I wish my yard was bigger than a pea pod so I could do fun things with it.

Suzie said...

Good job. I can help you deal with a rock hard flower bed and how to make the soil lovely. Mom and Dad's was that way for awhile and I had it look quite fabulous if I do say so myself. I'll give you a couple secrets Sigmond told me. Super easy.

Jo said...

You make me very glad that we live in an apartment now. Not that I would be gardening if we were in the house, but I would be feeling guilty after reading your post. But I don't!

Just SO said...

I've been digging up weeds left and right. HUGE weeds. It's what happens when you don't clean out flower beds in the fall. Horrid.

Good luck on your xeriscape.

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