Still and all, having the wedding on the Carolina coast felt like a great adventure to me... at least that's what we told the bride and groom. In reality, there was a big part of us that was relieved. Hosting family - old and new - is stressful under the best of times. When many in that family are gardeners, well..... one of us is quite in a tizzy about the whole thing.
TBG says "Whatever you think it needs to look good" and then pauses as he sees just how big my smile has grown. "Within reason, of course." Of course. A gardener can always find a reason.
I lost an entire planting season and the yard shows it. The euphorbia rigida, which were on their way to making a nice short hedge on the berm by the walkway, froze in January and were never cut back in the spring. Four of them have vanished. The remaining plant looks very very sad.
I'd cut it back if I could get down there. I can't ask anyone else to do it; the sap is itchy and milky and hard to remove. Gloves and tools and then some time spent cleaning them are required. It's really more than I've felt like doing.
The hesperaloe parviflora blooms are spent and the seed pods are looking particularly despondent.
I usually leave them up until I need them for Halloween decorations. I would take another tack this year because they look so dreary, but, again, bending down and making a clean cut is more than I'm up for.
We've been going back and forth between installing a short concrete pony wall around the front of the yard. We're trying to establish a visible separation from the street without blocking the view from the inside or appearing unfriendly from the outside. I worry about cleaning bird poop off a wall which is 150' from the nearest hose bib. That argument seems to be winning the day.
I've called Beth at Rillito Nursery and she's promised to come over on Thursday morning and give me some suggestions. I'm getting smarter the longer I live here. I'm going to select native plants from a reputable grower, distributed by a nursery I know and trust. I'm going to have them planted and I'll ask the workers to install the irrigation they'll need to become established.
A year ago I'd have saved money by doing a lot of the work myself. This year, with that not an option, I am placing my hope and trust in professionals. It's not exactly the Master Gardener way, but I think I can live with it.
After all, I have a wedding to plan.
Are you the Floridian nursery representative I met at BlogHer'11 after my panel? I've lost your card and I'd love to reestablish a connection. Leave me a comment, eh?