Report from commentor Mrs. D Ranged in AZ:
I’ve been working really hard on my front yard this year and have been trying to create a coherent design that doesn’t use too much water but is pleasing to look at. The planter box was a discarded shipping box I grabbed from the trash behind a Michaels store. I reinforced the bottom with some scraps, burnt the wood to help preserve it (shou sugi ban technique), lined it with burlap, then added a watered-down red paint, and finally distress sanded it. There are five succulents and a Purple Queen (I think) in the box, not sure if they’re going to make it.
Honestly I’m horrible with plants. I either forget they exist and they dry out or I over water them and they drown. It’s frustrating to me because my grandmother had such a green thumb. She was raised on a farm in northern Mississippi and could grow anything. Her small suburban garden was like the garden of Eden and overflowed with vegetables that I long for to this day. Her pickles were sublime.
The new plants are on a watering system, but I don’t entirely trust it since I can’t find the stupid key to the control box. Did I mention I have the attention span of a housefly? (shout out to all my fellow ADHD jackals out there).
The 4 ft tall wagon wheel is leaning on a support column near my front door. It is next to a Thunder Cloud sage hedge that produces purple blooms almost year-round, which attracts hummingbirds — much to the delight of my cats, who lay in the front picture window in the morning sun chittering away.
The rocks to the left are a dry river bed, common to yard decorations here in the Phoenix area. I’m on the hunt for more 4-6 inch stones to finish lining it all the way to the sidewalk. I gathered up about 10 wheelbarrows full of this size rock from my backyard to get it started (and I lost 35 lbs in the process, so woohoo!). Now I’m either going to have to buy more or go hunting in the desert for the “free” variety. Knowing my luck I will be unbeknownst on someone’s property and get shot by some FPOTUS-treason-loving rancher who thinks I’m an illegal immigrant.
Future plans for the front yard include a faux boulder or two (since the real thing is beyond my financial reach).
The Dr Seuss tree in my front yard is actually Mesquite. I’ve been trying to save it from falling over since I moved into the house 4 years ago. Originally it had grown so far over to the left that some branches were hanging over the driveway. Every tree expert I have talked to says there is no way to pull it back to plumb so best I could do was slowly trim it so the weight of it is more over the trunk and a tad bit more stable. Every time we have a big monsoon storm I’m afraid it will topple over.
I’ve actually become quite fond of it. Because of all the trimming over the last 4 years I have lots of cut offs and use it in my arts and crafts work. In fact the two large branch cutoffs by the wagon wheel are from this tree.
Last two photos are from a trellis/arch in the backyard that has a Tangerine Beauty Crossvine on one side and a Purple Snail Vine on the other. They cover a little solar powered fountain/birdbath that entertains the cats in the evenings.
So it’s not much but it’s a start.
Hopefully this winter I will have some raised vegetable gardens built to show you all in the backyard. Cheers from Arizona!
What’s going on in your garden(s), this week?