May 15, 2012

The One with a (Hopefully) Green Thumb

I do not enjoy yard work. I have never been a gardener. Pulling weeds is basically equivalent with torture. Getting dirt under my fingernails (what little, short, stubby fingernails I have) is gross. I don't like bug bites or worms or bees. I have serious allergies to pollen. Sweating in the sun while working with a shovel and getting callouses on my palms is not my cup of tea. I have rarely had success in keeping plants alive. 

But this past weekend I put all that aside and got to work. We live in a rented house, you see, and while the landlord takes care of the mowing, the lawn maintenance stops there. Our street is full of rented homes, leaving much of the sights rather sore on the eyes.

Despite my dislike of yard work and my lack of a green thumb, I have been slowly planning an attack on my curb-appeal-lacking yard. I purchased new gardening gloves, borrowed straight edge shovels, bought mulch, potting soil, seeds, and pots.

Friday afternoon I used my little hand trowel and spade to create a new, small flower garden with zinnia seeds and to edge around an existing flowering bush. (That was hard, long work.)


Saturday I found terracotta pots at a garage sale and paid $2.00 for 12. I used that borrowed shovel and other edging equipment and when to town on the sidewalks leading up to our house. I LOVE STRAIGHT LINES. (Betcha never would have guessed that. HA.) Again, hard, long work.

I brilliantly came up with a place to transfer all of the remnants of dirt and grass from the edging project--the 2 foot wide-1 foot deep sink hole in the front strip of yard along the road. I kept piling it on, stomping it down, and adding layer after layer of dirt and grass (and yes, even weeds.)


On Sunday, I edged along the main sidewalk in front of our house and finished off the sink-hole-covering project. It was like laying turf.


Monday I potted more herbs and vegetables--cilantro, basil, snow peas, jalapenos, cherry tomatoes, parsley, dill. Now I'm just going to have to figure out what to do with all of the seedlings. I'd like to keep them contained in pots, but I hate the thought of getting rid of the other little plants in the thinning process.


Monday evening, after dinner with friends, I headed to the back yard and dug up "forgotten" soil, tilling it by hand, and planted sunflower seeds and more zinnias. *crossing my fingers and hoping they grow. Filling the front corner of our back yard (visible from the road) with 10 foot sunflowers will seriously brighten the neighborhood.

And today, I scored the window box/valence pot I was hoping for--at my favorite store, Aldi! For $6.99 I found this lovely wrought iron basket with hooks hang it from the front railing. AND THEN, at Walmart, I came across a huge hanging pot of petunias on sale for...get this...$3.50! It was definitely a little sad, but I'm hoping I can revive it. I separated the four petunia plants from the pot and transplanted them to their new valence box. Even as unhealthy the as the flowers are, it brightens the house up immensely. I'm so thrilled.


...The work in progress product...
waiting for the flowers seeds to grow and the front tree and bushes to blossom and other working-bee brainstorms to occur.



  1. Way to jump in and go girl!! Looks great :)

  2. look at you, you gardening girl!! :)

  3. Trust me....I understand how hard you worked in the yard. It is back breaking, leg hurting, finger aching work, but your hard work paid off. It looks 100% better than it did. Excited to see if your flowers will all grow nicely for you. Just keep watering if you don't get rain.


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