Monday, July 10

Why Start Something New?

Well, after all, I AM down to just two active projects right now: Those posts that I need to put up for all of my espaliered trees and the grapevine, and finishing the flagstone path. (Yes, I still have some fall sowing to do, and to clean up the garage, but those two projects don't count for our purposes here today--mostly because I don't want to think about them yet.)

So this afternoon I dipped into my stack of retaining wall block and started laying out a pattern for a new mowing edge. Everything inside of the brick line is going to be lawn, and everything outside is going to be planted with other things. I took this picture from my attic stairs window so I could check the curve halfway through for needed adjustments. I'm going to leave the block sit for a few weeks to make sure that I can comfortably navigate the curves with the mower, and so that it kills the grass. That way I can tell where to dig to set each individual block flush with the grass.

My property line, which will eventually be marked by a wooden fence, sits about 3 ft. to the left of the end of the block line... and one of my espaliered apple trees is going to go in the skinny bed that will be bordered by the fence on one side and the straight part of the mowing edge that you see about halfway done on the left side of the photo.

My boyfriend and I are taking out two not-quite-squares of concrete as well. These are the two that you see on the left side of the driveway, where the remnants of this spring's woodpile remain. They are not even needed to access the left garage bay, and I want to plant one of my dwarf cherry trees in that general area so I need the space.

Originally I was planning to get rid of the lawn entirely. Then I started thinking about how much I really kind of like to lay in the grass on a summer day... and how much the dog enjoys napping on it, too... and how said dog also needs a place where she can relieve herself... and how if I ever have a child, he/she may want to play on the grass as well as the concrete in our backyard.

So for now the grass stays... and I will be looking for end-of-season sales on reel mowers. Because escaping the gasoline grip of the regular pushmower was my main incentive for getting rid of the grass anyway!

4 comments:

Stuart said...

Looking great Kim. These curves should be fairly easy to navigate with the lawn mower and much easier than standard straight lines with acute angles.

snappy said...

I love your plan and the attic shot is cool.I love my grass too.The grandkids play on it, the adults sit on it, and beneath the two trunked tree for shade,Footballs are kicked.Go carts pushed.Walking around barefoot is nice on an evening to feel the grass on your skin.
I love the smell of freshly cut grass which reminds me of childhood.It is low maintenence cutting it once or twice a week.
The english are obcessed by grass, lawns esp.Im happy with dandelions/daisys/clover sharing the earth with the grass.
Where is your espalier tree now?I read about them for growing fruit in a small area against a brick wall.Good luck with your projects.I hope you post pics and words updating your progress...

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Thanks, Stuart! I tested them out with the lawnmower tonight and I think they should work with a minor tweak or two.

I live in an older suburb of mostly foursquare "row houses" so the curves are kind of refreshing anyway. Everything else seems to be squared off, parellel, perpendicular, etc.

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Snappy, that's a much more eloquent argument for keeping the grass. :) I agree wholeheartedly.

The apple tree was just a little baby/stick this year so it's biding its time in the back of the veggie garden bed. I need to move it this fall and then start pruning it this winter. It should be a few years before I get to the point where I can get fruit from it, but I'm patient... sort of. Well, when I have to be, anyway! lol.

Oh, in the front of the bed in the picture you can see two horizontal bamboo sticks... click on the picture to make it bigger if you can't see them when it's small. The bamboo is temporarily supporting a pear tree espalier that I'm going to keep low, like a split-rail fence in the front of the bed. I really do need to get the posts finished so I can train them properly, don't I?!

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