The view from my porch… how embarrassing. The garden was in a horrible state. Despite the work it still looks pretty bad(or very bare now). All of the brown leaves you see are dead lemon balm. If you leave that stuff alone it takes the entire garden over. The Mr and I dug up at the very least four healthy patches that had huge clusters of roots that ran deep into the ground. There are three more left as of this afternoon(we pulled two smaller patches up). I want to keep at least one but keep it contained and the other two will either be tossed or given away… hint hint… (it makes really lovely tea, by the way)
Anyway, there was a horrible tree growing in the middle of my Japanese irises that had to go(it was one of those city trees that grows like, over night. We noticed it at the very end of last summer but thanks to the Baltimore heat… got really lazy to do anything about it). The roots were at least two feet long and there were three growing in different directions that made it very difficult to dig out. Now I need to get a saw so that we can get rid of it properly.
It’s so hard to tell but what you’re seeing in the after photos is most of what is staying in the garden (except the lemon balm. grrr…). I have two peony trees in the very front and irises right behind them. Two rose bushes along the outer left side of the garden (one is of a wild variety which produces the perfect rose hips for tea) and my favorite plant of all, my peony bush. Right now it’s just three little rose colored sprouts popping out of the ground but this early summer it will be full of lovely scented gigantic pink flowers. Seriously they are my favorite.
The one thing I seriously feared when I decided to do something with the space this year was that the dirt was going to be compact and tight. What I soon discovered was that the dirt was loose and moist. Just what I was wishing to find. It’s also loaded down with earthworms which I was so happy to see. We would spot one or two every other time we would pull old vines up. The first March after moving in I had tilled the entire space all by myself. The dirt was so compact that took most of a day. From late morning to early evening (some of it in the rain mind you) was spent playing in dirt. I added a mixture of top soil, perlite, and a little bit sand and it worked out for us the following few year. I was really expecting to do it again this time around so lets just say I’m happy.
I’ve dragged out my copy of You Grow Girl and have been glued to it for a few weeks now. I bought it when we first moved into the house and it’s made gardening for me so much easier to understand. I swear that by mid spring this garden is going to be so lovely.