Wednesday, June 15, 2011


"And positively no mowing," said Mike as we laid plans for our second home, the modular house in town which serves as "base camp" when we can't be at the farm. The result was that he and a rather artistic excavator landscaped our front yard, setting four flower beds within piles of big rock. Drought-tolerant perennials completed the scene. This is the sixth year of this plan.

It's basically a good plan, I think. The soil in this area is sandy. It was never meant for water-guzzling lawns. And it was fun to experiment with the drought-tolerant concept. The downside? Weeds, especially morning glory. Dealing with the weeds drives Mike crazy. On the other hand, drought-tolerant perennials are basically weeds anyway. We love the way it looks, and when we need to, we get out and pull a few weeds or transplant from one bed to the next.

These pictures were taken last week when the "snow-in-summer" was in full bloom. We also have lavender, basket 'o gold, hen and chicks, varieties of stonecrop, gallardia, coneflowers, thyme, etc., etc. Mike even transplanted some cactus, which proved to be a mistake as we can't weed around it. And now that sagebrush volunteers, we pull it up where we don't want it. When I shop, I watch for perennials that enjoy full sun, sandy soil, and little water. Mike runs a drip system through the beds that operates on a timer. So far this year we haven't needed to water at all.

And here's Nell. She knows she's not supposed to but it's one of her favorite things to do -- to snooze on the satin-covered pillows at the foot of our bed. I experimented with letting her have a regular bed pillow in the living room. Apparently it just wasn't the same. KW


Chris said...

Sadly, our best crop is weeds. Why is that??

Kathy said...

Assuming you really want to know, Chris, I think it's because a good gardener goes out everyday and weeds. You just have to stay on top of it, and it's not my inspiration. And one of the reasons it's not inspiring to me is that our soil here is so poor. Good rich black dirt it isn't. But -- the weeds grow in it. I'm sure where you are you have good topsoil, though.

Leah said...

They say wildflowers are just weeds. They look so pretty on distant hillsides because there are a gazillion little flowers all huddled together. Somehow, even if a weed has little flowers, it just doesn't look good with just a few plants.

Joanne said...

I love this landscape. It is very attractive!