Sunday, August 3, 2008

Yard Work Sucks!

Gardening requires lots of water - most of it in the form of perspiration. ~Lou Erickson

I have a pretty nice garden in my new house, and the best thing about it is that the lady who used to own the house loved to garden and she planted lots of plants and bushes and bulbs and trees, so very little was left to me except the maintenance of all of this...which sucks.

I've always loved gardening and growing things and up to buying this house, since I didn't have a garden, I grew indoor plants which I love and talk to all the time. In the past when I've lived in apartments and such, I would plant roses and azaleas and bougainvillea and night blooming jasmine only to have to leave it all when it came time to move. So I told myself I wasn't going to plant anything else outdoors until I was in my own house and I knew I would never have to leave it.

And now, now that I have my own house, my own land...I'm too darn tired to want to mess much with the yard and it's all I can do just to maintain it. Luckily my son does the lawn, mowing it and weed eating and edging and such, so at least that much I don't have to do. But yesterday I did work a lot in the back yard, but I accomplished a lot, just look!

Ok, first of all, this is a picture of a barrel in the backyard that was taken in June of this year. Pretty isn't it? The lady who used to live here had planted some pretty, white, dainty flowers, which were cute...but I wanted some color. My mom planted the ones with purple flowers...I have no idea what they are, but they blossom that pretty, sweet little flower and the next day the flower drops off. But more keep coming back. I planted the little yellow marigolds.

This is the same barrel a month and a half later. As you can see my mom has a pretty good green thumb, me...not so much as you can barely see the marigolds. I think this plant would have grown a lot more if it had had more direct sunlight, but the big tree blocks in afternoon sun and the patio blocks the morning sun. I'm going to try moving it to another part of the patio next spring...but it weighs a ton!

This next picture is of my one and only tree. It's in the backyard, as in the front I have nothing! I desperately want a tree in the front, but my sister has convinced me I don't need one due to all he plumbing problems the roots would create.

Isn't he a beauty? I don't think there is a more beautiful tree in all of Shafter. This winter I have a surprise for my son! When the tree crops all its leaves, he's getting the ladder out and trimming back the branches, otherwise next summer the branches are going to be on top of the patio.

The next picture is such a pretty flower, but it doesn't grow on a bush or directly from the ground, its part of a small tree by the back fence in my yard.

This is a really pretty tree, and the flowers kind of look like when cherry or almond trees bloom, so it must be one of those trees but it just doesn't bear fruit.

This next picture is the tree that blossom came from. It looks a lot better now because I trimmed all the branches that were growing willy-nilly from the trunk of the tree and I raked up all the dead blossoms which made the ground look as thought the tree was surrounded by pink carpet.

Part of the rest of the yard work I did was weeding. I didn't quite get to the rose garden along the back fence, so that won't be pictured, but I did do the weeding around the side garden.

See! Pretty and no weeds. The problem area here is that for some reason the lady who lived here planted a palm tree right there. As you can see soon it's going to block our way to the back gate and I don't think it will grow upwards because my big beautiful tree hangs directly over it. I want to remove it, but I've been told the roots will be really hard to dig up. I do have a perfect spot for it along the back fence line to the south of the roses.

Speaking of the roses, they aren't blooming as much as I would like. Driving around the neighborhood, I see other houses that have tons of blooms, so I know I'm doing something wrong, probably not deadheading enough or not feeding them correctly, or better yet...not feeding the at all, which I'm not. I just need to find the time to do some research online on rose care.

Or maybe it's just too hot because this rose looks great, but you can tell the heat has given it a bad sunburn!

These next three pictures are of a gift from my boss at work. For my birthday she made me this awesomely delicious cheesecake and she also gave me from her own garden an aloe vera plant and a basil plant. And I'm eating some of the basil that I put into a soup I made that I will post about next. I never knew how delicious basil was.

Part of what I did yesterday was re-pot the basil into a bigger pot. I hope he's going to be happy there, we shall see.

My boss said that her basil plant was really growing, then she put it into a bigger pot and it got unhappy. Come to think of it, he does look a bit droopy doesn't he?

And even though I love these pictures and I love going out into my backyard...I still think gardening sucks!

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