Posted in Gardening, On Writing, organization

My backyard revisions meet a drought

The 2021 garden season was the culmination of a three year project to transform the damaged deck and perpetually soggy backyard into a functional space where kids could hang with friends, the cats could enjoy the outside from the safety of a screened in porch, my native pollinator garden, needing no extra water, would be in full bloom, and the abundance of pollinators would guarantee a good tomato yield.

That dream is not fully realized this year. Between Covid-19, smoke from wildfires, high heat, and drought, the plot twists did not work in my favor. (BTW – neither did technology – this is take two on this post. The first one poofed when I tried to fix a typo.) Even though the garden photos are not as lush and in bloom as I would have liked, I’m happy to share some photos.

Before: A deck that heaved every winter, stairs that ended in a hill.
After construction, before landscaping. And yes, there are mud puddles.
Year Two in progress. The retaining wall redirects the water away from the flat part of the yard.
Phase Two complete. The sump pump empties into the rock river bed under the stairs.
Year Three! The plants are a little droopy. In a wetter year, it would be easier to see the yellow and pink blooms along the rock river bed. The pollinator garden is on the left side, and the right has prairie grasses. The lawn has a mix of grass and clover, and is a great place for soccer or bocce.

The process of revising the back yard is a lot like revising a book. It takes time to plan, build, fix what is not working, and at some point you have to accept that while it may not be quite what you first envisioned, the end result is satisfying.

Author:

where the heart finds a home