Sunday, June 26, 2011

Weekend Project

Anyone who has visited, since we moved in has commented or at least noticed the flower beds on this property.  When we moved in here, we had a neighbour tell us how much they always enjoy driving by and checking out the immaculate flower beds- the best in Freetown they said.  Well, I'm afraid that from that day on, their anticipation probably very quickly turned to dissapointment and now currently sits somewhere between disgust and despair.  I believe I posted some pictures from last summer when I took on the ones out front and they DID look good, for the summer.  One has gone rogue again this year, although I will take small pride in the other one maintaining, with a little bit of my help.  
It was the big bed in the back that has been my undoing ever since I moved in.  Each year, I'd tackle a little piece with such intensity that I'd only get that little bit done and nothing else, or another year I'd do a general, light clean up of the whole thing, but miss the thorough job needed to rid the bed of the cursed cough grass and devil weed (whatever it's actually called, I've decided it truly is the spawn of the devil).  So this year, I waged war and once I had a weekend of my husband's time to myself (between hauling mussel shells), I enlisted him to tear the whole damn thing completely out. 
view from the house-the bed is the mat of bushes and grass you can see in the forefront.

 So there's my "Before" shots.  If you can't tell, there's a dense, dark carpet of grass that is slowly choking out the beautiful perennials that should be taking center stage. 
So it started last week when we (mostly Mark) moved all these giant rocks which were the border to the old bed.   My plan was to cut the bed down to a 1/4 of the size so it was more manageable so I knew we wouldn't need all the rocks. Turns out they're a hot commodity as we've had a couple requests for them.  Anyway, on Saturday morning, the Kubota earned her keep as I desperately tried to save a few of the best plants and Mark took a very full dump truck of old flower bed, back to the woods.  Admittedly, when it was all gone, I had a brief moment of imagining it all in grass without any flower bed to think about, but quickly changed my mind. 
With the 'help' of Lucy and Wilson, we managed to build a herb bed around the border of the deck and lay the rocks for the new beds.   So here's what it looks like now.       
 It still needs a few herbs I haven't transplanted yet and I'd like to add a hunk of bleeding heart from my other front bed, but I'm much less overwhelmed with this one than before. 
 The hope is that I can maintain this reasonably and not let it get out of my control.  The topsoil came from our field, so not without couch grass, but certainly with less.  And no devil weed, unless I let it crawl in from somewhere else (which it inevitably will-but I'll be waiting for it). 

Mark is off to a stag party tonight, but I'm sure his back and body wishes he was in bed. The Kubota wasn't the only one earning her keep. :)
Yawn, I'm off to bed myself.  The blackflies just about carried us away tonight and I need my sleep to prepare for battle against them tomorrow.  Even the kids noticed tonight, which never happens.  I don't know if I've ever seen them so bad, although I probably say that every year. 



  1. I am impressed...What a big undertaking!

  2. Wow !! What a difference. This Fall plant some Spring bulbs so that in the early Spring, they are a sure sign of rebirth and rejoicing.

  3. Oh Sal! Great job! Love the herb border.
    ..and I agree with mom about the bulbs. Nothing like the sight of a cluster of crocus or of tulips to have you take moment and give thanks.