I'm back from the Capital Region Fling and it was amazing - as I knew it would be. The gardens are always wonderful but what really makes this event special (yes, I know I keep saying this, but it bears repeating) are the people - what an incredible bunch they are!
2017 Garden Bloggers Fling -Capital Region
Photo Credit: Wendy Niemi Kremer
2017 was not supposed to be a year of projects – in fact, my plan was simply to continue working on the existing ornamental/veg areas and perhaps start to clear the mess of invasives in the hilltop wooded area. After several years of vegetable garden expansion, doing a bit less work and a bit more relaxing in the garden was the main objective.
In 2016, the big project was installing drip irrigation in all the beds,
pictured here in one of the hilltop beds
Chicken wire and u-posts - a necessary evil
Don't let that cute, innocent look deceive you...
if only they enjoyed munching on bindweed as much as my veg!
The pool fence is just out of range, to the right of the beds
|Full access is needed to the gate that is on the far left of the photo,|
which means that hiding the fencing with shrubs or perennials is not an option
The beds are 12" high so I will need some sort of protection for an additional 12" or so - perhaps a panel that I can slip down the side of the bed - as bunnies can also do a number on ornamentals, as is evidenced by my lack of zinnias this year. However, since I don't have to worry about getting in there and harvesting or doing succession plantings, I can put something up in the spring and leave it until the fall, using ornamentals along the perimeter as camouflage.
Using these beds for flowers means that I would have to build replacement veg beds elsewhere. And there it was...the very excuse that I needed to expand Area #1. Thank you, honey :)
Area #1 photo taken a few years ago
We live on a bend in the road and our lot is pie shaped, with the larger part of the "pie" running across the front. We do have a large, flat expanse in the middle of the backyard but this area is where the septic leach field is located, which means that it needs to remain grass.
Area #1 is on the west side of backyard, in between the edge of the septic field (east side) and property line (west side). On the south end there are a series of sheds that we need access to so we can't build in front of them. On the north end, however, there is plenty of room to expand between the house and the property line, going towards the street.
Not exactly a professional image, but this Google maps screenshot illustrates the situation much more clearly than I could ever explain in words:
The house is on the right and the current Area #1 is roughly outlined in red
It's the perfect spot except for two glaring issues: (1) two mature 25' spruce trees are smack in the middle of where the expansion would be and (2) lack of privacy from the street and neighbours driveway.
Up next....our solution.