Last week I took a bunch of pictures and loaded them here. I was so jazzed about finally fixing up the front porch that I even re-started the mostly dormant blog. I showed the pictures around, even though to me the garden looks like a mess. I know what it was before, so I’m comparing what I have now to what it was before 5 years of neglect. But many people just gushed, even over my overgrown grass, saplings everywhere, etc. They said it looked like a park. So I took a look around. It DOES look lovely. It’s weedy and overgrown, but still beautiful.
So here are more pictures of my “park”. Comments below each picture.
Standing on the front porch looking off the corner to the Northwest. That is our car turnaround spot that is lines with cinder block and post fence. I’ve cleared the frontmost corner of saplings, but you can see the overgrown trees to the right. They have to go. If they get much bigger, they will interfere with my Box Elder (the big trunked tree to the left).
Looking due west from the front porch. Big box elder trunk. Saplings overgrown in the fence behind my kayak. Also dead elm to the right in back. It died in stages and has been falling down in stages. Due to be chopped down next time we hire our lumberjack. (Oh man was he a wet dream in suspenders!)
Looking due north from the porch. Our house sits on top of a hill and our land is on the north side of the slope. That round thing in the grass is the herb bed from a distance. It was there when we moved in, and I’ve used it for herbs for 20 years now. That sage plant is about that old, too. The skinny tree trunk on the left is a redbud. It grew from a seedling. It was 3 feet tall before I noticed it and instead of pulling it I let it grow.
This is standing by the herb bed, facing south looking at the house and porch. I’m looking uphill, hence the weird perspective. The ivy is Virginia Creeper. It’s a deciduous vine which does not damage what it climbs. We could easily pull it down if we had to (in order to paint the house, for example), and it would return from the roots. You can see elm saplings mingling with the roses next to the chimney. They are slated for removal this weekend. My two worst weeds? Elm seedlings and Bermuda grass. I would LOVE to build a house in an old pasture that has never seen Bermuda grass. I would seed out native buffalo grass if I had a choice. As it is we just let the weeds choke out the Bermuda. The rose is hybrid musk Vanity.
Closeup of Sally Holmes. I had to stretch UP to get her picture. Even so I had to crop to get a closeup. She’s very tall, about 10 feet at this point. Once she finishes blooming (and I’ve cleared out the saplings) I will prune her to about 4 feet and let her re-grow. She’ll bloom again after I do this.
North east corner of the house. Those two windows are to our bedroom. The big round ball of a shrub is a feral boxwood. That’s how big they can get if you don’t prune them. I don’t prune much of anything except to cut out deadwood or to protect something else nearby.
And one of my favorite views, looking down-slope from my bedroom corner. The tree on the left is a Oklahoma friendly sugar maple. Acer sacchirinum. They found a bunch of sugar maples that had naturalized to Oklahoma in Caddo county. Thus this is called a Caddo Maple. It turned gorgeous colors in fall. In the back center is one of our larger elm trees. Dead cottonwood with saplings to be cleared on right.
So these pictures will serve as the 2013 BEFORE pictures. I’ll document our sapling clearing and general straightening up. But Lou was right, it does look like a park.