Monday, January 27, 2014

Planning a Facelift

I could say that I'm growing rather tired of all the lessons I get about the value of patience. They seem to come pretty frequently. I could say that, but it would be a bit untruthful. The lessons are by no means annoying. In fact, I think I find them comforting. Perhaps they suggest that I could eventually learn to be patient. Perhaps.

I've learned another one of these lessons recently. You see, had I been more patient in the early months of owning this house, the Secret Garden probably would not have been in a persistent state of being "not quite right." It has always seemed cluttered, maybe even that it's lacking a specific identity. That's been bothering me quite a bit for the last few months.

Bit of a messy corner

And another messy corner

A generally unsuccessful corner

You get the point...

Many of the gardening books I've read have cautioned would-be gardeners who have moved to a new home to wait a while, get a sense of the place, let ideas percolate, and then begin the creation of a garden. Some have even suggested that one wait a year or two. Every time I read something like that, I thought the author was very right and wise, and then I walked straight into my garden and did the exact opposite. The results have been pretty disappointing. The upside is that I've been letting things percolate at the same time, and now, a little over 3 years of being in this house, a real Secret Garden plan is falling into place.

That plan begins with destruction. We've been clearing things out. Some plants have been ruthlessly cut down and pulled out, and others have been relocated to new areas of the yard.

A small portion of what has been removed so far

A relatively cleaner slate
Over the years, I've noticed that visitors to the garden walk rather awkwardly down the paver path. I think the limited number of pavers have made them feel like getting to the swing involves a game of hopscotch. So we're doubling down on the pavers. But that's just one of many changes to take place in the garden in the coming weeks.

An easier path to follow

In such a confined space, the garden needs a lot of structure, I think, so that's what I'm going for in the designs. I haven't finished drawing them up, but here's where I am so far.

Entrance gate to the right. I'm rather short on plants
in the plan at present.

I hope to finish the reconstruction of the garden in about a month. As ever, I'm very cost-conscious, so as I give you updates on what I've accomplished from week to week, I'll also give an accounting of my various projects.

I hope you'll find the renovation process satisfying to watch. And, please, I beg you, be patient with me as I create the new space. I hear patience is one of the best things to cultivate.

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