Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Frugal Garden: Rehabbing The Door Yard Garden

My poor door yard garden has been seriously neglected in the last few years (health problems, now resolved) and has become horribly, and I mean horribly, overgrown.  This used to be the garden that people walking or biking by would stop to admire, so it's decline is hard to take.

The other problems I have with the door yard garden are a poor selection of plants and old, declining plants.  I mistakenly chose two types of flowering plants that ended up being invasive; spreading by underground roots.  The old plants were junipers that we planted, I kid you not, over twenty years ago.  Old and gnarly junipers looks good on mountain tops, not in flower gardens.

I wish I had a "before" photo, but imagine a garden with three feet of inter tangled roots, 1-2 inch diameter juniper branches intermingled with the invasives' leafy stems.  I have had to slowly dig and cut these things out of the garden.  Trim stems, try to dig up plant, oops juniper root in the way,  saw away juniper root and repeat.

Almost Done

I have learned that some plants that are manageable in the north due to the harsh winters are actually quite invasive in my sub tropical zone.  Once again, local gardening wisdom should have been relied upon instead of the plant suppliers information.

Need To Relay The Brick Edging Too

Some of the plants are going to be kept.  The iris will be divided and replanted; their leaves provide texture to the garden.  The lemon grass will be harvested for drying and one bunch divided for replanting and sharing with the neighbors.  Lemon grass grows about 3 feet tall and wide, but is a useful and attractive plant in the garden.  There is a Florida native, tickweed, that has lovely daisy like flowers and a basil that always reseeds itself.

The door yard garden will have compost and manure dug in, ph adjusted, and mulch added.  Before planting I will get the micro irrigation system back up and running.  Then I get to plant the vegies, herbs and flowers that will, hopefully, return the garden to it's former glory.

God bless,

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