Our backyard is a mess. It looks more like a quarry than a garden.
The addition we are putting on the house blocks open access for getting big equipment to the backyard. So, before construction started, we had palettes of heavy landscaping materials delivered (so each stone would not have to be hand-carried through the breezeway at a later date).
This vast store of materials is ready for the rebuilding of old walls, creating steps up onto the hill, and paving a new dining patio. But in the meantime, all these cold stones seem to be standing in the way of my catching spring fever.
I usually love getting in the backyard and seeing what spring is bringing to life. But this year, I really had to push myself to climb over the stone mountain, and do some necessary clean up and fertilizing of the perimeter planting areas.
Turning my back to the rocks and crouching down, I got started with leaf removal.
In no time, I found the joys of gardening and springtime at my fingertips. I remember planting this ‘Jack Frost’ Brunnera a few years ago. I love seeing it come up each year.
I started to think about how much our garden has changed. I realized that the stone yard looming behind me is just temporary – an awkward phase.
I remembered when we moved into our house, how barren the garden was. I think John’s string art, intended to keep birds from eating the grass seed, may have added to the awkwardness of this phase.
But the strings must have worked, because eventually we were able to get some grass to grow. We also replaced the fence and put some foundation plantings in front of it.
Then we put a lot of energy into the garden design. There was extensive on-line research into shade tolerant shrubs, lots of trips to the nursery, and within a few seasons, we transformed our barren little plot into a place we really treasure.
Remembering how pleasant the garden was last year, I closed my eyes and took in a deep, renewing breath of spring. I imagined how much nicer still our garden will be next year.
Then I stood up, stepped back, banged my elbow against a rock, and remembered I am still in the midst of that awkward in-between phase. Ouch.
live. enjoy. repeat.