May 17, 2011

Welcome To The Jungle

When we moved into our current home, the yard was a gorgeous thing. The previous owners started the neighborhood gardening club and it showed. It was pristine, like a snapshot of a fairway at Augusta.

But we have kids. And those kids require feeding and guidance and nurturing and playing and face-scrubbing and tucking in. In other words, we didn't have a hell of a lot of surplus time on our hands to spend rolling around in the dirt.

Before we knew what had happened, the yard went to hell.

I kept it mowed and edged. Grass grew nicely. But the flower beds around the perimeter of our yard started to creep closer and closer to our house. They encroached. They might have even killed small wildlife. We lost a fence. An actual fence with a gate. One day it was there, the next (seemingly) it was gone having disappeared into our suburban jungle.

We tried to knock the jungle back in place but it merely laughed at us and our half-assed attempts, mocking us, saying "what else you got, bitches?"

On Friday an army of men armed with scary tools came and reclaimed our yard, destroying every inch of the encroaching jungle. It was the only thing short of renting a plane and dropping napalm on our yard that was going to accomplish anything. Our yard is still mostly grass but it's ringed by a healthy amount of dirt. Wonderful, beautiful dirt, sprinkled with a thick coating of grass seed. And it's pretty amazing how much better we feel.

Posted by Chris at May 17, 2011 7:26 AM

All I can think of is "I love the smell of napalm in the morning."

Posted by: alektra at May 17, 2011 7:55 AM

Just an FYI, it's too late in the year to be planting fescue grass around here. It'll never get established before the heat of summer kills it off. Plan on reseeding in the fall - right around Labor Day.

Posted by: COD at May 17, 2011 8:37 AM

Ah, I feel your pain. Our yard was beautiful when when we moved in 10 years ago, kept up by first by an older couple and then by a single woman. After we moved in, we had the bushes separating our yard from the neighbor's ripped out when it became clear we didn't have the time to keep them from overtaking our neighbor's yard. There was a beautiful butterfly garden that we ripped out to put in a swingset (now replaced by grass). There was a huge patch of daisies by our front door that's now gone, replaced by grass. There's still an area at the front of the house that we can't grass over because it's raised and I keep trying to plant things even though I know I don't have time to water and weed so they die. I think this is the year I finally give in and plant ivy.

Posted by: Carolyn at May 17, 2011 9:01 AM

I totally have a plan to get this done to mine. We have two corners of our yard that have lives of their own; their green tree-like hands are reaching towards our house, threatening to take over!

Posted by: Claire at May 17, 2011 10:04 AM

Yes, the tending of small children should likely rate at least a little bit above that of a lovely garden ;) Maybe when the kids are old enough to know a flower from a weed (except I'm 27 and still don't, really :P ) you can bring some of it back.

Posted by: Heather at May 17, 2011 10:18 AM

Oh, how I would love to have a home again and have a lawn to tend. I was a stay-at-home mom for a number of years, so I had the time to devote to a lawn and garden. I hate apartment living. Hate it with a passion. Maybe someday... :)

Posted by: Julee at May 17, 2011 11:00 AM

You would love my yard then - there's not a THING to take care of only grass to mow! My father didn't believe in planting anything he would have to take care of so we don't even have bushes in front of our house. The only trees are the ones that have been there for almost a century (hardy Maples! don't have to take care of those!).
I adopted his position because I'd rather weed than plant. Or destroy rather than grow.

Posted by: NancyB at May 17, 2011 12:52 PM

I feel for you, as gardening can be very time-consuming. It may have been easier and cheaper to hire a part-time gardener. Good luck with the grass seed, hit and miss when we do it.

Posted by: One Mom's Opinion at May 17, 2011 2:22 PM

We have a "lawn" of gravel... with some weeds creeping through. The city fined us for suing too much water when we tried to keep the grass green, then fined us because our lawn wasn't green enough when we cut back on water. We tilled it all up, dug it out, and put down rocks. Now we just weedwhack the weeds once in a while and rake it up.

Posted by: Debra at May 18, 2011 6:25 AM