Saturday, October 15, 2011

Christa, Day 62: I Can't Say I Mind a Messy Yard

My first yard is attached to my first house. Sure, I've lived in homes with yards but they belonged to other people. In one case, ducks swooped in every morning for a few handfuls of corn and in the process of eating the corn, kept the grass on the short side. Anyway, we were lucky in that the previous owner (who happens to be the midwife who caught P.) planted a whole bunch of perennials. Every spring and summer, flowers appear without our having to do anything.

The first spring, it was a lovely surprise!

Which isn't to say that our yard is maintenance free. Our backyard trees dump entire mats of brown leaves on our back lawn and garden. The wind blows all of the neighbors' leaves into our front yard, just in case we didn't have enough raking to do. We keep two food gardens - a big one in the back and half the front lawn, too. We have borders around the whole house and up against the fence. And so on, taking me to today's simplification idea:
Create an easy-to-maintain yard. If you spend too much time on your yard, here are some good tips.
Too bad the link doesn't work, because it would have been nice to see what the Unclutterer folks do to keep yard work to a minimum. Honestly, I can't say that we spend too much time on the yard. Here's why:
  • Lots of mulch. I can't be arsed to pull weeds from everywhere.
  • The aforementioned perennials make things colorful and cheerful.
  • Staggered perennials, so there is always something in bloom.
  • All the borders. They may be a hassle to trim around, but they make everything look neater without our having to do much.
  • Free mulch in the form of autumn leaves.
  • Less lawn, more food and less mowing.
  • That black plastic that goes around food plants so no weeds grow.
Also, laziness. I don't live in a gated community or have a HOA to deal with, and my neighbors are lovely people who aren't entirely obsessed with landscaping. I can let a few things go here and there without feeling the weight of neighborly judgment pressing down on me. I mow and I trim and I weed here and there, but frankly my day lilies and irises and marigolds are all out of control.

Then again, my favorite gardens are slightly messy ones that are sometimes called English gardens with lots of plants crowding close to one another. So I rather thing my yard looks kind of nice when it's a little less than neat.

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