Sunday, August 31, 2014

Somethings Got To Give

In yesterday's post I noted that the garden needed weeding. 

Whose doesn't?

But mine is SO bad that I thought "Maybe I should just mow it." 

And so I did.




I was out mowing the backyard anyway and looked over at the mess my garden has become and decided to got for it.  I choked the mower out about 3 times but in the end, I prevailed.

This year (and last year too) have been a struggle in the garden.  All it took was one windy day two years ago when the Bermuda grass was seeding. 

I remember actually seeing the grass seed in the dirt as I planted my summer vegetables and just knew that I was in trouble.

As you know, nothing much happens in the garden around here in August.  In an attempt to gain control I've got part of the garden areas smothered with black plastic. 




But look what happens one month after I've uncovered it.





Geez!  It was nothing but dirt.  I'd pulled up all the weeds I could find and look at this tall weedy mess.  That's fast! 

Now it's true that I haven't been as attentive as I'd like to be this year.  I think building and working on finishing the deck took up what little of my spare time I had each weekend.




But as I look at the grassy pathway's in my garden....(Trust me, there is weedblock and mulch underneath all that grass)...mown nice and short, I reflect that maybe I've bitten off more than I can chew.

Can I seriously keep up this fight year after year?

The short answer for now is "No" I can't. 

Maybe after I retire when I can nibble away on it daily, but not now.  I have too many other things pulling on me and when I do manage to "gird my loins" and wade into the morass, I come out disappointed and discouraged.

I've been around the block enough to know what works and what doesn't in this climate.  And I also know that something's got to give.

So while I know I'm still going to garden, I also know that I'm going to rethink what I want out of the garden and how to get it.

I'm thinking of planting a dedicated blueberry patch, planting more fruit tree's and creating more space for flowering bushes like hydrangea and peony's in the actual garden block itself. 

Once planted, these areas will be weed blocked and mulched like other areas in my yard.  My hope is that an established area will be easier to maintain than one that is constantly being turned over. 

I also want to consider what to do about the walkways. 

I could try to block the weeds and grass using heavy tarp plastic instead of weed block and then place mulch on top of it. 

Or perhaps I should just allow the grass to grow in the walkways and create more raised beds with higher sides.  Then I could just mow as usual around them.

Lots of things to consider.
 
Lucky for me I've got till next April to work on it.


Nature knows no pause in progress and development, and attaches her curse on all inaction.  


-Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

5 comments:

  1. I started to use really heavy cardboard in the athways between by raised beds. Some of the home stores will let you have their big cardboard boxes. This has really helped.

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  2. I can completely relate ~ only on a smaller scale. I recently accepted the fact that "my garden" was “my responsibility” (I also recently lost my weed-puller since she started dating) . . . and that meant that I had to create and maintain something that I was able and willing to keep up all by myself. So I've been downsizing out front and re-focusing in the back. Gardening for me is therapeutic and when it becomes riddled with complete stress, I know I’m doing something wrong. I think you need to do what feels right for you at this point in your life. It’s not like we can’t change our minds next season! 

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  3. We have road fabric (more serious than weed block) and gravel. The weeds still grow, even hydroponically but they are fewer and easier to pull. Large concrete pavers are nice. We have a lot of those.... Not much grows in concrete.

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  4. Gardening is such a battle, even without Bermuda grass! I think you're taking the smart route - tackle sections. It seems like every year I get a new and improve (invasive) weed to battle. My strawberry bed is a mess!

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