Today was another digging day. Since the ground still retained some moisture from the last rain, I thought it would be a good idea to finish clearing out more weeds before the sun baked the clay soil into some sort of adobe. I’m sure a better idea would have been to rest up today after yesterday’s exertions, but I wanted to finish weeding one particular section.
I considered putting sod in that area, but I will lay down sod for a patch of lawn in the front yard, and I really don’t want to spend the time and effort — and water — to groom two lawn areas. As I was digging up weeds, I noticed there was plenty of knotweed in the area, which passes for grass in this arid climate, so I considered just watering the area and letting the “grass” grow to add a bit of green to the backyard.
But, as I was weeding, I had another thought. When I first moved here, before I got into landscaping and gardening, I’d considered turning my yard into a meadow. Even that takes a lot work, so I abandoned the idea, but a small meadow would be perfect for the area I’ve been weeding. That triangular plot of land will be sectioned off by hard pathways on two sides and the sidewalk on the third side, and I can see all sorts of wildflowers blooming there. Even better, it won’t matter if the “grass” grows between the flowers or if an occasional weed gets a roothold, because that’s the point of a meadow — anything goes.
The real issue for me is to get a mix of short wild flowers. I’ve been researching wildflower and wildflower mixes, and so many of the flowers grow four to six feet tall. Eek! I’d get claustrophobic with such tall plants in an open area! They would be perfect for outlying areas along the fence, but I’ve already planned other flowers for those areas — hollyhocks in one spot and a lily forest in another.
I finally found the right mixture at a seed place that caters to farmers and businesses with acreage to fill, so I’ll have to buy more than I need, but it will be a lot cheaper (and quicker) in the long run than trying to buy individual flowers seed packets and mixing the seeds myself. The good thing about having so many seeds is that I can plant half in the fall, and if they don’t come up next spring, I can plant the other half and see what happens.
Even after all this time, my landscaped yard with lush garden spots is still little more than a vision I dream when I am doing such mundane chores as digging weeds and turning soil, but you never know. Someday I might actually dream that vision into reality.
Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator