Wednesday, January 24, 2007

On my back yard

This is my first post to my new blog... please bear with me while I get established...
First an introduction to my personal city gardening situation...

When I moved into my current apartment, the back yard was a jungle of nasturtium and oxalis. My landlord wanted nothing to do with it at all, and gave me free rein to garden to my hearts content. My boyfriend and I rented a tiller and tried our best to chop up the hard packed clay (intermixed with shards of pottery, old dishes, leaded glass, various rusted metal springs, keys and other unidentifiable fragments of days gone by) I began to plant as my budget would allow and the garden began to look like someone actually cared, for the first time in years. I enjoyed being back there, chatting with the neighbors, working as my cats sunned themselves in the open space.

Then things began to change. My landlord got a new boyfriend, a high-falutin' landscape designer from LA. He began bringing plants from his jobs, removing the things I had planted and began implementing a more upscale design to the yard. Which is great, don't get me wrong, but suddenly my landlord was fucking obsessed. He began to spend every waking minute in the back yard, usually starting at 7:30 on Saturdays and Sundays. I have the basement apartment, and the garden is right outside my windows, so I didn't much appreciate the rude awakenings I began to get as he worked the garden and yelled up at his boyfriend on the second floor...

Now the back yard is a friggin' jungle of evergreen sub-tropical plants, not one inch of open space. I mean, 3 Fatsia Japonica's fer chrissake. He couldn't wait for the plants to grow and fill in, so he has packed the space to the max and now has to cull out the tremendous overgrowth caused by his excessive daily overwatering. Even now, in the winter, he's out there watering every day. But hey, it's his property and he can do as he pleases, of course. It's just that I no longer have any privicy and I hate that he's outside my windows every minute of every day.

I still have a tiny corner, just underneath my bedroom window. My aesthetic is more the cottage, country garden with a mixture of bright annuals, lillies, perenials, flowering vines and some edibles in pots. I like deciduous. I like color. I love quirky little secret nooks and crannies. I know it drives him crazy because there is space between my plants, and they don't need watering every day. Ha!

So goes it in the daily trials of sharing space in the city. I know I'm lucky to have a landlord who allows me to have a space of my own to cultivate. So I should be gratefull.

My latest project is that I'm going to bonsai a young Phoenix canariensis I got at Target. Go ahead and laugh...
But it's so cute! I'm looking for a pot and a book...

So welcome to my world... pictures and more interesting conversations to come. Comments are encouraged and will be read with enthusiasm.

Later!

2 comments:

Vicki said...

Tell you obsessive overbearing neighbors to think "drought-resistant." We have no snow and it's almost February.

shibumi

anile said...

yeah... while the whole world is going DT, Mr. Stomp-above-my-head decides to palnt a rainforest! Arrggghhhh!