Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Endless Love

The vegetable garden and the beehive in the back corner.

Doug and I spent nearly all day Sunday and Monday in a marathon session of sex. Just kidding. We spent both days, outside, working in the gardens. The kids were notified that they would get little if any attention from us for two days, unless they decided to help us out. Which they each did for about an hour then reveled in their freedom from parental supervision.

Anyway, Doug does the vegetable garden and as it is actually located in our pasture in the back, keeping the weeds at bay is a major challenge. They had grown up quite a bit last year (um, mostly because we didn't keep up with them) and we wanted to expand our planting area this year. So he rented a tiller and was out there at 7am Sunday morning mowing and then tilling in order to get down to the dirt. He cleared out the whole area before the bees decided they had had enough of all of the noise and activity and began to attack. He got about 5 stings including one on his left ear which turned red and swelled up. After that he puttered around quietly, forming the row and planning where to plant everything. On Monday he put weed barrier down and got about half of the vegetables planted. The rest will have to wait until this weekend since he is in the city for a few days.

Meanwhile, after indulging myself in a flower, shrub and vegetable plant buying binge last week, I began to clear out the back flower garden. After four years I have finally wrestled the front gardens into submission and all that is necessary there each spring is just a bit of raking and weeding and maybe planting a few annuals. The back garden however, is trying to kill me. I had it cleared out last year and I planted a variety of flowering shrubs and perennial flowers like spirea, bee balm, daisies and coneflowers. Alas, I was so lazy/busy last fall that I didn't really do a good job of cleaning it up for the winter, and then in the spring the weeds invaded and after a few good rain showers they were almost waist high. I had been pulling them out a bit each day but they would seemingly reappear overnight. So my goal over the weekend was to clear them all out, put in a few new plants and then mulch. I spent two days bending improperly at the waist pulling weeds by hand. There was rain on Saturday night so the weeds actually came out fairly easily, too bad there were at least a million of them! Anyway, I got the last bit of them out on Tuesday night and then have a bit of hoeing to do before I plant and mulch. This is how it looked this morning.

Basically anywhere you see space is where the rude and extremely audacious weeds were just a few days ago. I really must keep up this time. Right.

My hamstrings hurt like hell, my right arm and both hands are practically having spasms from pulling the weeds out, I have welts on my arms and legs (from evil bugs that laugh at the concept of bug repellent) an oval shaped sunburn on my lower back where my shirt rode up and my shorts came down a bit when I bent over to weed. Lovely. Doug has bee stings on his ear, forehead and arms and sort of a whole body pulled muscle.

Come to think of it, this is probably the shape we'd be in if we had had a marathon sex session. Heh.

Anyway, it really is like heaven here and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

The front of the house. Note our new porch. It's plumb!

The back patio with plants waiting to go in.

Oh and did I mention that I got a few baby chicks? We couldn't get it together to get a goat or sheep, so I made do with 9 chicks, seven of which are Araucanas, the hens that lay blue and/or green eggs. A little color is always good.


KJ said...

Lovely home and gardens... and that's the patio that we saw with mounding snow... wondered what it would look like in summer. Your workload makes me tired... actually, so does mine and I don't have chickens ;-)

meno said...

The sex would have been more fun.

Your yard looks lovely. That stone fence is very picturesque. I can't believe it's the same place that was under all that snow.

I hope you will post a picture someday of all the different colored eggs. Or post a picture of a painting of all those different colored eggs.

Chris Rywalt said...

I'm a big fan of weeds. They're green and require no maintenance. Our very tiny yards have been steadily overrun by various weeds and I couldn't be happier. Our backyard hardly has any grass left -- it's all onions and dandelions. Every so often I go out and weed-whack them. Our front yard is mostly clover with some grass mixed in and the occasional dandelion. But last year we hired a local guy to mow out front so that we wouldn't become total social pariahs (you know how important lawns are to these Americans!) and he puts down (without asking us) some kind of weed-and-feed. I'd rather he didn't but I haven't gotten around to tell him to stop.

Grass just eats up too much water and energy -- not just mine but in terms of fertilizer, mowing, and so on -- for what it does. It's a total waste. Other countries don't have this obsession with lawns. What's wrong with us?

Anyway, all I do for gardening is cut roses off the bushes that came with the house every so often.

Tracy said...

Thanks Karen, you know I forgot all about that photo of the patio last winter. It's hard to believe it ever snowed here at all on a day like today.

Meno, well, I don't know about that. It has been 20 years and 4 kids after all:) All I can say is no one was interested in sex what with all the yard work to be done.

Chris, Believe me, I am with you about the lawn fixation. We don't do a thing to our lawn except mow it. It isn't really grass either, it's a good mix of clover, dandelions and a variety of other things that looks green.

I am totally opposed to using chemicals on lawns and gardens and I only use water in the garden until new plantings get established.

We used to really get annoyed in Utah when our neighbors sprayed their lawn 2x per year. We had a lovely brown lawn each August and it was a nice change of pace:)