Monday, May 4, 2009

Done! (for this year)

I have been working sporadically to get areas in front that used to be exclusively St. Augustine lawn transformed into garden beds. I have a vision in my head of a very casual semi-rock garden look. There are spots where I think my vision is clear.Other areas will need more work and more time for grasses and other naturalizing plants (like this pigeonberry) to fill in. Not having a super hot droughty summer will help, but that may be too much to hope for.Here is what we originally had:And this is that same area now, uphill from the driveway, which is where I started the project.Click on the photos to get a closer view, as the teensy shots here don't quite do it justice. I think these beds are most entertaining for pedestrians, with different lines of sight opening up as you proceed along the curb. We have a lot of folks walking in my neighborhood so I consider this my gift to them.

I've been working from the curb up the hillside. The plan being to get a swath planted along the lowest parts to help keep erosion to a minimum while things were getting established. It seems to be working so far.I have big plans for eventually covering the entire hillside in all different sorts of plants with gravel and rocks interspersed. Seeing as this was the last day we have high temperatures forecast below the 90s, I am declaring the areas "done for this year". This year meaning the hot season. Once the temperatures begin to dip back into the 80s I'll get back to work.For now I want to rest on my laurels which hopefully I reduced a bit with the exercise today. As opposed to the first summer after we killed all the grass, I think you can tell there is something potentially beautiful other than regulation grass at least planned for here. Now begins my rain dance! Feel free to join in.

One last note. It was the urging of my daughter who got all this started. She kept encouraging me to stick with these very long term projects of moving from a monoculture to permaculture status. Actually, all the work in these beds represents a labor of love. My entire family has been very patient and supportive and any beauty that has been created here is but a small reflection of my love for them. Addendum: I have been sweetly reminded that the lovely ladies I walk with for exercise have also been extremely patient - listening to me gritch and moan about the work to be done, my aches and pains after a work day, and excusing me from joining them on certain cool mornings (like today). Thanks, ladies!


  1. Hello, chairomai if you were okay. Hi Michalis

  2. It looks fantastic! I know how much hard work goes into converting a conventional grass lawn into something more diverse.

    You're using three of my favorite xeric, plants, too: rosemary, Mexican feather grass, and verbena.

    And it is indeed a very nice gift for your neighbors!

  3. Well worth all the hard work. You deserve a rest now too.

  4. Very cool! I've been working on my front yard and I'm so sad it's too hot to work out there right now.

  5. Deb, I love what you're doing with your front yard. I garden on a large corner lot in the burbs of Houston and my front yard is mostly garden. I never get tired of hearing from neighbors and passersby that they enjoy seeing what's blooming. I tell them that I garden for everyone else as much as I do myself.

    I'll look forward to seeing how your garden evolves!

  6. Thanks for dropping in Julie and Cindy. Day before yesterday I had all but thrown in the trowel - drought alarm stage 2 declared and no relief in sight. Then it RAINED and cooled off, at least temporarily. What a difference an inch of rain can bring - even in my attitude. Hope you both will come back by!

  7. Deb, I love your front garden, our front yard is also a work in progress! Will I ever achieve what I'm hoping for? Your photos have inspired me. I can certainly relate to heat and drought, our Sydney summers are the same.
    Enjoy your break.

  8. Re thanks for dropping in. I've often wondered how it would be to garden in the Sydney area. All the TV programs make it look such a gorgeous place but I noted your summers are awfully hot and dry as are ours. I'm heading in to visit you virtually! See you soon.


About Me

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Rollingwood, Central Texas
Family historian by default. Oldest surviving matriarch on my branch of the Family Tree. Story teller, photo taker, gardener, cook, blabbermouth.