Thursday, December 10, 2009


I would love a walk in the woods, alternately if people would have interesting gardens, I would enjoy walking around more in my town. As I walk and look at all the interesting things people have done in the grass everywhere paradigm I like to think of all that we could do if we shed grass for more interesting botany.

I hang with folk who would bring us back to pre-settlement ecosystem, wonder sometimes how that would be done in our huge grass-and-concrete-scapes. I find it entertaining to imagine vines growing up the over pass and over the rails, ponds in the street after a rain, primroses, along the sidewalk, making it a primrose path. In my own garden primroses long ago were taken over by forces of nature.

Forces of nature, letting them do the work for you, finding forces of nature that work in your yard, this is what I like. Many young folks have commented they like the garden when I have not had time to weed and sculpt. I am interested in planting native plants and leave asters and winter stalks for the finches. I don’t know if we would have finches in the neighborhood but for the feeders my neighbor keeps, but those finches like to come to my house for desert.

The most dramatic native has been milkweed, and the monarchs that come to feed. Other butterflies enjoy other plants. I mostly have common milkweed, and I take the pods off in fall so they won’t plant themselves in my neighbor’s yard. My neighbor spent his boyhood on a farm in Minnesota and was in charge of removing the milkweed from his family’s fields. He hates it.

My role model lives about three miles away. They have perennials on their front yard. They have a path of grass in between beds one mower width wide. The male in that family does the mowing and likes it. They have had this garden for 20 years and it is beautiful and interesting for passer’s by. I met these folks when they were out tending their garden and got tips from them. Their’s is not a maintenance free yard, but there is less mowing and more growing (sorry, couldn’t help my self).



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