|megpie71 (megpie71) wrote,|
@ 2016-08-20 11:36:00
I went and visited my parents yesterday, and picked up a collection of plants for our garden.
I should possibly explain and give some context. We've recently moved rental properties, from a unit with very little actual garden space, to an older house which is situated on a very large block which goes back a fair old way. The garden area here has been highly neglected over the years, to the point where about 80 - 90% of what's growing is soursob and the other 10 - 20% is whichever other random weeds are able to survive there. About the only plants which have survived in there are some freesias in the back terraces, a few Cape Lilac trees, a single rose bush, and a native wistaria which appears to have been planted relatively recently. Oh, and a few nasturtiums along the south-eastern garden fence line - but they're practically part of the sub-set of "weeds" anyway. Essentially, there's a lot of potential in this garden area.
My dad was very nice, and came out not long after we moved in (we moved in about a month ago, he came by about a fortnight back) and sprayed about half the garden area (the front yard; the side alley where various things such as the water heater, the gas meter, and the air-conditioning split-system live; the uppermost terracing of the back yard; and the paved areas near the laundry) with glyphosate, which has been rather effective in killing off most of the weeds. Turns out the front garden apparently had a lawn of couch grass underneath the weeds, and now the soursob has been killed off, it's starting to show through and get feral again. There's also apparently a few overgrown flower beds, delineated by ornamental rocks (the sort which usually get broken up for road gravel), and the remnants of a previous effort at an irrigation system (there's one neglected in-ground sprinkler visible on the upper west side of the front yard, but I doubt whether anyone knows if it's connected to anything). On the eastern side of the front garden, there's a small pond (which currently is a hideous green colour, due to having a layer of Cape Lilac leaves falling in it every autumn) which apparently grows mosquitos - I doubt it's large enough for fish of any kind, and if I get my 'druthers, I'm going to see about getting it removed, and what was possibly intended as a rustic seat beneath the very large Cape Lilac tree, but is going to be used as a plant stand. The other features of the front garden are one path leading up to the front fence (and the letterbox, which has only recently been vacated by all the snails who'd moved in - now I just need to scrub it clean again), and another which branches off the main path and leads to the driveway.
Again, lots of "potential" - especially for anyone interested in the sort of urban archaeology required when rejuvenating a rather tired garden.
At the moment, the "lower forty" (the back of the back yard, which extends down the back of the block) is all weeds, and it's on the long-term agenda (in the sense that if we're here for longer than the current twelve month lease, I might start looking at rehabilitating it and making some use out of it). At present, my main plan is hiring someone with a whipper-snipper to come along and effectively scythe everything off at about ground level at some stage in the next couple of weeks, and hopefully stop it all from seeding.
Anyway, yesterday I went and visited my parents, who had offered cuttings and spares from their garden if I wanted them. I came back with a sample of frangipani (it's an older house in the town of Victoria Park and we don't have a frangipani growing anywhere on the block - I suspect we may be in breach of a by-law!), a few bits of geranium (two dark pink, one red with variegated leaves - hopefully the variegation will carry through), some red poppy seedlings (which according to my mother will just drop seeds and self-sow all over the place), a batch of what my parents call "bluebells", and which I suspect are actually grape hyacinths, some more freesias, some snowdrops, and a cutting of blue Swan River daisy. All of which I'm going to plant out in one of the two surviving designated garden beds in the front garden (they're right down by the front verandah). The bulbs will all wait until they've finished flowering, and then I'll dump out the pots they're in onto the garden bed, and mix everything in. The poppies and the daisy will probably get planted out at some stage during this next week, and the frangipani has to wait about a week before it can be planted out. The geranium bits I've bunged into the soil straight away, and they should strike fairly easily.
My plans at present start at "buy the tools" (because we've not really needed serious gardening tools up until now - all my gardening has largely been in planters and pots), and include getting a couple of punnets of rosemary and lavender seedlings from one of the local nurseries, and planting those out by the front fence as a hedge; getting a "Nelly Kelly" passionfruit vine and planting it on one side of the trellis in the back garden area; getting a white sultana grape vine and planting that along the other side of the trellis (at the other end from the passionfruit vine); and planting out the remains of the three packets of bean seeds I've brought with me from our previous location in the area I'm planning to use as a vegetable garden (it's underneath the big Cape Lilac out the back, and I figure I may as well just make a virtue out of a necessity by treating the leaves and twigs as free mulch each year). I also have plans to see about getting someone to help with levering up the back three rows of 3" concrete slabs which make up the back-most terrace in the back garden, and re-positioning these into the front garden to make a landing pad for the rubbish bins, rather than having to drag them over garden beds to put them out each week.
(I'm considering the possibility of contemplating the idea of starting an Instagram account or something similar, so I can share pictures of this garden as I work on it. If only because I want to keep a record of what I've achieved).
This entry was originally posted at http://megpie71.dreamwidth.org/66801.htm