duriyah: (Default)
Last weekend, I continued my project of managing the non-grass plants in the shady side yard. As a result of Rob’s herbicide adventure a year ago, there’s almost no grass there at all this year. Instead, it’s all weeds of one sort or another. I decided the best way to manage it would be, instead of mowing there, to pull up the weeds I don't want and encourage others to thrive.

Specifically, I pulled up poison ivy, Virginia creeper, garlic mustard, ironweed, pokeweed, thistle, and another prickly plant whose name I forget. I am encouraging chickweed and moss, and of course the early blooming (and now dormant) endangered spring beauties.

I love the chickweed. It’s fast-growing, creates a soft springy mat, and it isn’t a vine so it won’t climb up the trees or house walls. I am ambivalent on the presence of broadleaf plantain, which is plentiful. On the one hand, it's not attractive, but on the other hand, it's not prickly or rash-inducing. So I leave it. A little research tells me that both chickweed and plantain are medicinal herbs, which is cool!

In about two hours I completed probably 3/4 to 4/5 of the yard. I had hoped to transplant more moss over to the moss and step stone walk area that I'm constructing, but I ran out of steam before I got there. I’m not sure if I’ll have time to do it this weekend, either. Maybe the following weekend. I’m fast running out of growing season!

Rob and I also finally got around to mowing the rest of the yard this weekend, too. It seriously needed it. For the time being, anyway, I feel good about my yard.
duriyah: (Farmhouse spring)
I've been kind of busy, so I'm really behind on my updates. I'll try to catch up. I wrote this entry earlier this week. It's about last weekend:

As the weather has gotten warmer, and grass and weeds have been growing, I’ve had increasing stress about yard work. The good thing about living in the country is there are no neighbors to complain if I let the grass or the thistles get too high. The bad part about living in the country is that there is SO MUCH grass and SO MANY places the weeds (like thistle, Virginia creeper, and poison ivy) can take over. I was in so much pain last year that I couldn’t even think about doing anything except mowing. I don’t want another year like that to go by. This year I really would like to bring a bit more order to the farm yard.

Saturday morning I woke up stressed about all the many things that needed doing. I realize that it’s just a yard and this stress is not worth it, but still….it’s the feeling of not having control that bothers me. It doesn’t help that most of the recent weekends have been rainy and/or windy so I couldn’t get anything done.

My response on Saturday was to put off the “shoulds” and take a break for something fun FIRST rather than later. So I went shopping. First at World Market, where I bought some really pretty candle holders and a pillow to brighten my meditation/exercise space. Then up to Microcenter, where bought a new ergonomic keyboard. More on that in a later post.

Sunday, though, I got to work. I enlisted Rob to help me with the yard work. We took the lopper and cut down all the saplings that have sprung up in places where I don’t necessarily want trees. Like inches from the house or garage. Or in the middle of the raised flower bed. He trimmed some dead branches from the established trees, too. I pulled Virginia Creeper, mowed, and did some trim work. I stopped the minute I felt my back begin to get tired, came inside and put ice on it.

It was good work. With Rob helping it seems almost manageable. We got a good start on the work that needs to be done. I feel MUCH less stressed about it all now.

And now, a few things from this weekend:

Saturday morning, after breakfast (er, brunch), I potted up all the herbs that I'd bought: parsley, cilantro, lemon thyme, oregano, marjoram and basil. After the herbs I potted a few cuttings of pothos I have been growing over the winter. It took two hours, but felt like a huge accomplishment when it was done. My back did start complaining, and my butt is sore now, but I don't think I did any real damage, i.e., nothing's gone into spasm.

I still want to plant sage and mint, but this is a good start. The tall spiky plant is garlic I planted two years ago.

I can't tell you how much being able to get some work done outside has helped my mood. I really wanted an herb garden this year. Planting them in pots was definitely easier on my body than digging holes for them would have been. It feels like I have some ownership of my yard again. Or maybe relationship is a better word. I find myself enjoying being there more comfortably now.


duriyah: (Default)

August 2013



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