Spring is coming – I can hear the weeds growing

While the weather outside is dreary, and I’d much rather be kicking it in front of the boob tube, watching The Munsters, Punxsutawney Phil has got in my head with his predictions of Early Spring. That, and I can hear the weeds growing around my house.

I have been busy, covering whole sections of my yard with plastic and cardboard.

I had old sheets of black plastic from a roof job we did, and every time I go to Cash and Carry I grab a box. Yeah, I know - it's ugly.

I had old sheets of black plastic from a roof job we did, and every time I go to Cash and Carry I grab a box. Yeah, I know – it’s ugly.

But it’s better than weeds, especially those GD sticker weeds – I don’t know their names, but I can identify at least four different kinds of nasty pest sticker weeds before they are a half inch in circumference. They get in our pets’ fur, they get in our socks, they stick to the strap on our flipflops – boy, I really get mad when they get in the laundry and come out stuck to the elastic in my underwear. I find them in the rug, they just get everywhere.

A couple of years ago, as the price of water started to skyrocket, I noticed it was hard keeping the grass alive, but the stickers could live – not just live – THRIVE! on hardly any water at all. As soon as the lawn was compromised the stickers moved in with a vengeance. So, I dug this big pile of plastic out of the shed – I had threatened to throw it away about 800 times but my husband kept saying we’d need it for something.  What a guy, he’s so smart – he is The Repurposer.

Sheesh – you want to kill weeds? Kill them dead? Rot them to dust? Evaporate them? Get yourself some black plastic, I never seen anything like it. See the picture below – that mud used to look just like the green section there around the dog house. It did not need to be told twice. 

But, I was amazed how quickly the Summer sun rotted the plastic. Recently I had to get rid of one sheet that was disintegrating into chunks and blowing all over the yard. I just spread the last piece of plastic I had over that spot, and I don’t expect it to last beyond Spring. I have another bare spot I don’t have any more plastic to cover, so I have to get busy.

This is where I think I'll plant some of those trees Whipple gave us last Fall.

This is where I think I’ll plant some of those trees Whipple gave us last Fall.  The ground is clean, but also really hard and compacted from months under black plastic. I need some mulch to keep it clean, soften it up, and protect the young trees from the Mutha Summer we are going to get.

Luckily, my husband also has a compulsive habit of scanning the “Free Stuff” on Craigslist with his coffee almost every morning. Today he found a neighbor only a few blocks away had a tree removed and ground up and was offering a big pile of free redwood chips. The picture showed they were sitting in the public  right of way on a busy street, likely to disappear fast, so he called my son and  they were out the door by 8:45 to score the free chips. They loaded our pick-up full – which is quite a bit of work to keep me busy – and there was still quite a pile left for the next opportunist.

The nicest thing about these chips is they were free. We've paid $20 for a pick-up load like this.

The nicest thing about these chips is they were free. We’ve paid $20 for a pick-up load of shredded almond bark.

 

It took us almost $60 worth of chips to mulch in this redwood tree.

It took us almost $60 worth of chips to mulch in this redwood tree. Ignore the skid marks where my husband pulled the truck in to dump the new load, those rake out. 

 

this area

I just spread this sheet, but it won’t last long. I’m not sure what I’ll do here after I get some little trees planted in the bare spot to the upper right.

This is a hot section of yard, right off our front door. If we can get some baby trees to grow, we can change the environment. In my dreams, we will get the grass back. Grass does not take nearly as much water in the shade, go figure.

All this and time to make a pizza, get out! Look how puffy the crust is – I rolled some little strings of mozzarella cheese in there. Then my husband dressed it up with some sauce, proscuitto, canned olives and the rest of the string cheese.

Ooooo - too pretty to eat!

Ooooo – too pretty to eat!

 

oh yeah just kidding.

oh yeah just kidding.

 

 

 

 

 

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