I didn’t even think it was possible for landscape design to go out of style but…I could have been wrong about that. It can certainly fall into disrepair. One plant takes over, another flounders, a weed sneaks it’s way in, rocks begin to fall from the carefully erected wall, and poof it blows up into a mess. This is what I am faced with – a major undertaking, a minor budget, and the need to create something that is fairly self-sufficient.
I can buy plants, pick and arrange flowers, weed, and water, but none of that means I have a green thumb. Growing things is not a strength, most of my plants seem to die, so I am a bit worried about the prospect of taking on a home landscaping project. Not worried enough to not do it though.
My plan is to combine a series of hardscape areas with plantings. It will be important to limit the grass in the yard, which would require an irrigation system (out of my budget). I want to remain true to the indigenous plantings, and those that are iconically New England Coastal. How to do that without buying loads and loads of plants that look wild and natural will be the challenge.
While I encourage sitting with a space, a new home or apartment for a bit of time before embarking on a renovation or major furnishings refresh – all I want to do is rent a back hoe, tare up the yard. Then I want to bring in mature plants, stones, chairs, and planters. I want it all done like that time I took the long walk from my house in the North End to the Government Center T-Station. I crossed a temporary bridge that went over a strip of highway – now the greenway. I marveled over the effort it took for the crew to erect the foot bridge each morning and rebuild it every evening – in a location roughly 6 feet from where it resided in the morning. I never found out why they did that, my cynical self said it was to ensure hefty overtime checks, but who knows. It was however topped, when the DNC came to town, the Mayor called whatever the equivalent of a public Winston Flowers is, and pouf – a beautiful greenway dropped from the truck like magic fairy dust from the wand of a fluttery fairy. It was beautiful.
I know that I shouldn’t want it to just arrive, no effort, no pride, no sense of ownership or accomplishment, and like that magically appearing greenway, a few days later – it was gone. Every stone I dig up, and put into place, every bush I plant, flower I select, stone I collect on the beach is likely to be special, to be cared for, to have lasting power.
Suggestions are welcome. I’m in unchartered tall grasses here.