When we lived in Kentucky, I would peruse Southern Living and dream about growing beautiful Southern and tropical plants. I lamented the short growing/blooming seasons in the “mid-South”. Then we moved to the tropics. The grass is always greener on the other side.
I love Crape Mrytles and big showy tropical plants, not to mention the glorious warm Springtime in Houston. What also comes with living in Houston – lots of rain (unless there is a major state wide drought), bad drainage, undesirable soil, and it’s hotter than Hades. The first year that we lived here, I couldn’t believe that it was warm enough to plant annuals and perrineals in Feburary! Wow – Houston seemed like paradise. That was until the first major storm that washed away all of my plantings in the low lying area of the back yard, which was followed by punishing heat and weeds.
I had resolved to conquer my gardening problems. If one thing didn’t do well in a certain area, well, I tried something else. This required a certain amount of stubbornness and persistence.
Then came baby Sarah Amelia! Needles to say, yard work really took a backseat. Over Memorial Day weekend 2013, Bryan and I decided to tackle one of the weed infested areas of our backyard. This particular flower bed is the most visible from our kitchen, yet it is the most difficult to get anything to grow. It is shady and has terrible drainage.
For a long time, I resisted Bryan’s urging to use Roundup on the weeds, but finally I caved. As you can see from the image, Bryan had good reason to use a short-cut. I did weed the areas around the ferns and hostas, because I didn’t want them to bit the dust. Just weeding one small corner took at least two hours. Not to mention, it was very hot outside, and there were lots of bugs – in particular, mosquitos. Oh yes, mosquitos….. After the weed dye-off, I easily removed the rest of the mess. By the time I managed this, it was too hot to plant anything. That, and well, I was too tired to deal with it.
Fast forward to the New Year 2014. I had resolved to get this under control. Bryan brought out the RoundUp (again, sigh) and we started over. The flower bed was recently cleared and flowers purchased. I wanted to spruce up the yard in celebration of the girls’ upcoming birthdays. That may sound weird, but doing yard work and planting flowers is fun for me. After almost a year since trying to straighten out this flower bed, I finally have some new plantings – yeah Spring, and yeah for my Springtime babies!