I need to stop getting on the Internet. There are blogs out there that are dangerous in the extreme.
It seems that the mistress of The Havens has fallen into a new dream state, formed some sort of delusional grandiose vision in her head. She has hatched some sort of far fetched idea that the front yard of The Havens could be changed into some sort of meadow like tract that would be xeric, beautiful and not draw the unwanted attentions of the Lawn Police of Our Fair City (and yes, such an entity does actually exist in this ridiculous, conservative and uninformed community — they call him the Compliance Officer. If this raises visions of Orwell’s 1984 in your mind, it should.).
Last night Gardener Woman was moved to ask her Dear Husband how much weed killer he thought it would take to kill the grass in front of the house. All of it. This flies in the face of her organic principles, but research done in the past (when she envisioned turning the entire two acres into a prairie) has indicated that if you really want to exchange an expanse of lawn that includes fescue, bermuda grass and crab grass for a meadow, the easiest and least destructive way to make a clean slate is to spray it with weed killer. Even though it feels wrong.
So, the Master of the House replied, “Not that much.” Then, after a sleepy pause, he asked “Why are you asking this question?”
The Mistress replied, “Oh, I’ve been thinking about a project.”
After another long pause, the gentleman inquired, “How much more time am I going to have to spend weed eating if this project gets done?”
“Oh, it won’t require any more weed eating. In fact, it would eliminate ALL the weed eating in that particular area.”
“I’m going to try not to spend any more time imagining this and try to fall asleep now,” he said, not particularly consoled. “We’ll talk about this later.” In a short while, heavy breathing from that side of the bed indicated that he had been able to achieve sleepdom.
The mistress, in spite of the fact that she was scheduled to get up at 4:30 a.m. the next morning to assist in the “getting off to work” phase of the master’s work day, was not so successful. She lay awake, tossing back and forth, turning over the whole scheme in her head until the wee hours.
This morning, after a certain amount of coffee, she actually went out and paced off the front area, and made a rough schematic of it. After all, seeing what “Is” on paper is the first part of a plan of action. Actually, putting stuff on paper is a very dangerous part of a dream phase, because it suddenly changes the dream into a potential reality, and it is all down hill from there. So to speak.
Transforming this expanse to a meadowish flower garden is a project that is even bigger than the Stroll Garden. As a matter of fact, it is more than twice as big, since as you can see from the below plan, the Stroll Garden does not take up the whole 56’x104′ area lined out.
I suppose since the Stroll Garden is now 95% complete, lacking only filling in some bare spots with small perennials, my attentions are being drawn elsewhere. You will note that the Stroll Garden has grass paths, all edged with stone, which require considerable weed eating time and accounts for the concern of the Yard Man expressed in the conversation above.
So the next question is, how many plants will this take to landscape? (Hundreds, I imagine). How much is this going to cost? It will probably cost more than I think. On the other hand, possibly not as much as I fear, since I have a lot of plants in the back that I can propagate for the front. How long will it take? Just acquiring the flat rocks that are already on that plan (in my head) will require a certain amount of time.
Maybe there is a grant somewhere. I wonder if the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation would give me money for a demonstration xeriscape garden. With a rain garden. Because there is a down spout coming off the corner of the house that would feed a rain garden beautifully. And the one in the Stroll Garden is a thing of beauty.
I blame Gardening Gone Wild in general and, Saxon Holt and his co-conspirator John Greenlee, and the Lawn Reform Coalition in particular. This is ALL YOUR FAULT! Darn you all for fostering delusions, or as some might term them, dreams in the hearts of gardeners!