We all know that gardens are always in flux. Some plants survive, some thrive to the point of taking over and sometimes you just want to change things up. Last year we looked at our front yard and decided that buying sod every year was expensive and labor intensive to install on a regular basis. What's a gardener to do? (we all know---you make a new garden bed!) The wet winters and dogs running over wet grass made the lawn thin and excessively needy.
I had big plans, make a giant mulch bed in the front yard. I haven't measured the size of the area we were looking at making a new garden....let's just say it is a large area. Maybe I will go and measure it one of these days.
We left a mower sized width of grass along the driveway and between the gardens. In the center of this new, massive garden is a Little Gem Magnolia with daylilies around it. Once the plan was hatched, mulch was needed. Lots of mulch. We had ten yards of mulch delivered.
Because we had some grass and a lot of weeds the plan was put cardboard or newspaper under the mulch as a weed block. Before you jump all over me, I have since read information from the Garden Professors about not using anything under mulch. Their recommendation is to just have a good layer of mulch (inches deep) and it will smother/block the weeds. Good information, just after the fact.
Moving forward we used tons of cardboard, mountains of newspaper and still ran out. We had help with the mulch from our kids who came to visit last July. With their help the mountain of mulch was spread. Hallelujah!
|Liebling was a great help|
I brought a birdbath home from my Mom's house. In front of the birdbath I planted some Agastache 'Blue Boa', Coreopsis 'Mercury Rising', Stokesia laevis (Stokes Aster) and other plants for pollinators. The maples were doing well, the flowers were thriving but there was a problem with the garden...........WASHOUT. Some Liriope and an Amaryllis were added to try and slow the water flow. They didn't.
With every rain we had a trail of mulch running downhill through the grass. Not happy. I had scooped/raked up mulch multiple times. Something needed to be done. You see some rocks in the photo above. I didn't grab a before photo but the mulch was still in the grass so it is a good example. The rocks that I have had leftover from other projects are all in the lower part of the yard. Our property is on a good slope. Moving enough rocks was going to be a lot of work just hauling them up the last part of the hill.
My great plan was that my lovely assistant (daughter Rachel) and I would load up the rocks into the cart that attaches to the lawn tractor. My husband just needed to drive the tractor to the bottom of the yard, wait for us to fill the cart, then drive the tractor back up to the front yard.
|Me mud splattered|
|Rachel muddy from rock hauling|
|View from the top of the hill|
We are due to get more rain sometime in the next few days. Cross your fingers! I want the "river" to be slowed and the water diverted as to not move the mulch.
|View from the bottom of the hill|
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