Sunday, February 10, 2013

Garden Design Implementation: Phases 3 - 6 of Eleventy - Billion

NOTE:  I call it "Eleventy - Billion" because it makes Roberta happy.  She's not a numbers person, so I'm not sure how she's so sure that such a made up number is, in fact, accurate.

Welcome back to my backyard - where I have a plan, but the husband decides the plan is lacking.

In case you don't follow me on the facebooks, a few weekends ago I went out and purchased 6 cinder blocks.  I figured 6 was a good number to start with.  You'll remember that my plans called for a cinder block succulent wall.  My husband, however, did not remember this little detail.  My husband does not like cinder block walls (even after I showed him Pam's pictures of her wall).  He also does not like galvanized steel stock tank planters/ponds.  I have since decided that he is a weirdo.  This also means that I have to change my plans for what to do in my little rock patio area (not to mention figure out what type of planters to get for my herb garden thing I want to do). Also, this leaves a hole in my plans of what to do about screening the utility box.  He's all for building something out of wood, which I'd rather not I may end up just planting some tall grasses, throw in a bottle tree, and call it good. (watch, he probably doesn't like bottle trees either [edited: He does not like bottle trees...found that out this afternoon.  Lesson: I like modern, he likes manor style classic - so be glad I have any plants.])

Anyhow, back to the story at hand - I came traipsing home with 6 cinder blocks, 4 of which I immediately lined up in the rough location of said wall.  The husband was not amused.  In the end, I used 2 cinder blocks to create a step down from the deck; the other 4 are in their original location, but are now covered with pruned tree limbs so we can't see them.  And if my husband can't see something, it doesn't exist.  The problem with the step I made is that it's still a bit of a big step to get from the deck to the step and vice versa, so I may have to put two of the remaining cinder blocks on their ends to make a two-step system.  The other two will be used to elevate one of our rain barrels. (Again, my plan was to raise both of the rain barrels, but that, apparently, is too much work and so we will only raise one of them.  Maybe.  I think the husband is talking himself out of it because it requires cutting a down-spout and breaking rivets or some such)
It ain't pretty, but it's functional.  And for now, that's all I need.

Phase 4 was planting Dianella along the side of the deck - if the plants don't make it (due to lack of water or otherwise), I'll just have to find different plants to plant.
A zoomed out photo

Close(r) up of the dianella plants at the deck.

Phase 5 was moving all of the Mexican Petunia from the shady side of the yard to the more sunny side of the yard.  That went well.  I haven't moved two clumps yet (the ones by the humming bird feeder), mostly because I couldn't remember off the top of my head if they were supposed to move or not.  Hopefully the Petunia will like the northeast corner of the yard better than they like the south fence line. I think they should, overall, get more sunlight there, which will make them happier.
A bad picture of the transplanted petunia - you can't see anything.  That's why it's bad.  I guess if you get your magnifying glass, you can make out a few sticks sticking out of the ground, those would be the transplanted petunia.

Phase 6 was installing a 'step' to help climb the little hill thingy we have going on in our yard.  Of course ,this 'hill' was recommended to be removed by the garden bloggers at the Go-Go 2 Julys ago, but, as Bob says, 'anyone can have a normal looking tree' and I like having the grade change, so I'm going to try to keep it.  I was trying to figure out how this whole "add a step" thing was going to work out because I figured any time I tried to dig into the dirt, it would erode away with rainstorms.  And it may very well do that, but I figured since I had the red stepping stones from Phase 1, I might as well use them.  So instead of 1 step, I now have 3 and a half.  I say half because I only really need 3, but I didn't know what else to do with the 4th step, so it's kinda just laying in the dirt above the steps completing the little stair case.
Steps.  The plan is to plant a crapload of castiron plant along the fence.  Maybe I out to plant something with some height...I do have a Carolina Buckthorn tree that I have to find a place for...

You know what's gotten bad?  The laying in bed at night contemplating what to do.  Even though I have a plan, the husband has already up and changed one aspect of it, and so I've been contemplating what to do that will work for everyone (including the electric and cable workers that will need to get back to the box with some regularity).  Also, the area where I was going to put the little stock pond.  I think I've decided to switch it to a bird bath, but I'm not sure on if I want to keep the whole "flagstone patio" type look.  because that will still be a ton of rock in the back yard...maybe if I switch up the color it wouldn't be as noticeable...or maybe it'd be MORE noticeable.  I think having a dark loose rock (like pea gravel or river rock size) patio would look great with some cement squares laid out to walk on.  I'm pretty sure this goes under 'modern' and therefore the husband will nix it, but he'd be fine with the flagstone style set up.  Normally, I'd just do something and be like "don't worry about it, it'll be fine!"  The problem is that if my husband doesn't like it, I would never hear the end of it and every project I do after that will be a constant question of "Yeah, but remember how that patio turned out?  hideous."  It would be like my own personal "hideous bed." 


Roberta said...

Seeing pictures of your yard always make me want to come and play around in it. The cinder blocks were a smart move - you never know when they'll come in handy. A like a woman who knows the value of a cinder block. And I may not be a numbers person but I do belong to the secret set of arcane numerals and Eleventeen is our mascot!

Roberta said...

oh god - too many typos! Evidently, I'm not a word person either.
*Corrections: "I" like a woman who...
and also, "The Secret SOCIETY of Arcane Numerals"

Bond said...

The pre-cut "assemble your own wood steps" at Home Depot are pretty awesome (the ones I went to buy with Kevin). As I recall they would be pretty close to the right height and didn't cost too much (and would look all "finished" to appease your spouse). I also like the modern/whimsical look. I can even appreciate those yards bordering on tacky if done with enough flair. You should definitely do a small in-ground pond. I always wanted one. As many droughts as we had, I started leaving dishes of water out for wildlife/stray pets because I felt bad (I guess that is tampering with natural selection/thinning at work, but I couldn't help myself).

Lancashire rose said...

I think it is time you asserted yourself and insisted on doing at least one of your projects. The stock tank is still a great idea and will give height and interest to the garden. Just bring it home and put it in place and fill it up. And go out and buy some more blocks and do that wall. Remember Diana and her bed. Her husband hated it but he was stuck with it. It reminds me of Frank Lloyd Wright when he built a house for a lady and gave it a red door. When she saw the door she said she couldn't tolerate the it and he told her, "You'll get used to it"

katina said...

Roberta - By all means, please come over. Also, I picture Eleventeen (which is a number according to our friends' kid) being pretty much an eleven with goggles and a cape.

Bond - I was thinking the same thing, and I may go get them and put shawn in charge of doing them because he needs a project.

Jenny - I think I may do that with the stock tanks that I plan to use for planters - He may not like them, but he's also too lazy to drive them back down to Callahans.

Pam/Digging said...

I think Jenny is right -- you deserve to have at least one of your projects. Opinionated hubby can then get one that he wants. And so on. It may not end up being all one style, but eclectic can be good too!