Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Curly Willow and Garden Weeding

We decided to tackle the base of the curly willow this past weekend. The tree is much bigger than the photo shown, the trunk has grown thicker and the tree taller and wider. The base of the tree was a good foot high, piled with dirt and rocks surrounding the circular shape around the tree on the front lawn. As I've mentioned the past homeowner put huge river rocks everywhere to use as a border, which is hard to mow around and allows grass to grow into the border quite easily. My husband pulled out the shovels and wheelbarrow, and we started pulling away the massive rocks surrounding the base of the curly willow. We were not sure if the base of the tree was flat with roots underground or if the roots were above the lawn. We were hoping the roots of the curly willow were underground but no such luck, about six to eight inches above the ground a thick root was found, we then put back the dirt and redwood bark that had covered that area. We weeded the grass growing up through the rocks atop the dirt and rock border, and used shovels to dig out all the large rocks from the base of the tree. I pulled out some pink hyacinth bulbs that I planted to replant them elsewhere. With a small area cleared next to the lawn it was much easier for my husband to mow around the base of the tree. The curly willow looks better at the base of the tree, next we would like to put a wood border around the tree to make the area look nicer and perhaps fill the border in order to grow some flowers at the top of the wood border.

While my husband carted away the huge river rocks to the back yard, I started weeding the smaller side border near the porch. The larger side border was weeded well recently and it was time to make the other border look better. I got into a sitting position to weed between the three orange and yellow heathers that decorate the small border. As I was weeding I noticed how much more these heathers were starting to bloom. This is the first year the six brightly colored heathers lining the walkway to the front door have bloomed, and the pink and lavender flower colors are fantastic against the yellows, greens, bronze and oranges of the shrubs. The small border had a few pieces of wood separating the border from the lawn, but these pieces of wood are rotting away. Bender board or bricks are two of the ideas we had to form a line around the border, frankly anything would be better than what is in place currently. I spent quite a bit of time pulling grass from around the three shrubs and once the area was weeded the shrubs were much more noticeable in their border because of their colors and blooms.

There is one more border that needs some serious weeding, it is an oddly shaped area next to the porch with the drooping cherry tree front and center in the border. The previous homeowner did nothing symmetrical in terms of design, everything has an odd shape when it comes to the shape of the flower beds. I'm not against the unusual shapes, but it is to an extreme and makes caring for the borders a bit more difficult. Now that we've begun digging out rocks the next step for the front yard is removing the other rocks lining borders here and there and replace them with some sort of uniform and functional border. With the amount of curves in the front yard borders bender board may be a better choice than bricks.

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