Sunday, May 24, 2009

My secret garden

Yesterday I went to my parents' house to spruce up the gardens in the front yard. I really wanted to take advantage of the beautiful weekend, but the little yard here at my and J's apartment hardly seems worth it. We' re renting. It's a swamp. Everything has to be planted in containers to ward off slugs and deer and permanence. So I spent the day in Mom's flower beds instead.

10 to 12 years ago, Mom landscaped the front yard and planted a magnolia tree on a little hill by the driveway. We lined it with limestone and granite that we found on a geology field trip to Mt Baker, and planted ground cover and herbs. It was beautiful. Over the last 10 years, it's gotten totally unruly.


I spent about four hours sawing and pruning and ripping and dragging, knowing there was soil under that overgrown mess just waiting for some TLC. Mom kept the yard clear of debris while I perfected my scorched-earth method of gardening. Once the hill was cleared, I transplated a bunch of perrenials that were growing in other flower beds (unkempt and at risk of being choked out by dandelions and ivy). Dad wrote us a blank check and we went to the feed and seed store to get new plants and beauty bark. What a difference.


This is a portion of the burn pile we created with all the branches we tore out:


Memorial Day Weekend, 2009


  1. I wish I could be there to see it in person! I love your parent's house!! I can relate to the not much to do at our place thing. Our back yard is overgrown with weeds and a big tree branch that was thrown from the roof. And since it's a rental, it hardly seems worth the effort to get out there and clean it up. Some day, Auntie, we'll have a house of our own... someday.

  2. You're such a good daughter. I hope you and your Mom had some good quality time. It looks beautious.

  3. holy canoli!

    way to go gardener girl!!!

    that is an amazing transformation! gardening is good for the soul isn't it? i took to hand pruning the GIANT hedge along our driveway today and i am seriously refreshed (and going to be a little sore). :)

  4. Nice job! Hubster and I did the same thing this weekend - yard work.

    Trimmed the hedge, mulched the beds, cut back the herb bed, weeded the fern bed.

    It makes SUCH a huge difference!

  5. wow, love that tree transformation. Great job!

  6. Oh Emily, you did such a fantastic job! What an amazing transformation!