Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Making the Grade

When we were first looking at this house years ago, we noticed there was an extra (locked) door in the living room. I was hoping for an extra closet.

It does open to an old set of concrete steps and into the backyard. Before we moved in the inspector told us the steps should go because they were coming away from the house and letting water down into the basement during heavy rains. The space around the steps is filled with a tangle of lily-of-the-valley and bishop's weed. The bishop's weed spreads by root (rhizomes) and crowds out anything else planted there.

After a few years of neglect (and a little fun with a sledge hammer but not quite as much fun as the time dh demolished a copy machine in his parent's driveway) I think this is the year to fix the grade on that bed. Last year I removed the wood borders. This year I need to transplant the bulbs we planted there. Then kill the invasive plants (leaving a foot or two near the foundation for lily-of-the-valley). Finally I need to level out the mound using an iron rake so the water runs away from the house.

As usual I think I got myself into more of a project than I anticipated. I can see a week or two down the line I'm going to have to remind myself how important this really is. Maybe create my own temporary zen dirt garden.

At least until those tomatoes get bigger. I have a feeling I'm going to need that spot.


lisa said...

As long as you don't get any weeds, the zen garden looks very low-maintenance!

Tam said...

Low maintenance...yes (if the bishop's weed will cooperate)..but I'm running out of room for tomatoes!

I'll let people with multiple acres go zen.

sasa said...
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