Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Health and October

So Marty had mono, and I think less (even less) of the medical facilities for which we pay insurance premiums than I did before. But I love Marty just as much. He's going back to work today for the first time in a week or more.

It's October in my yard and I'm collecting flower seeds and moving rocks and stirring compost and rearranging natural plants. It's part of my fifteen-year plan to replace weeds with better weeds, the progression being this:

1) goatheads and tumble weeds are replaced with desert grass from the vacant lot, and whatever comes up.

2) OOPS, whatever comes up is pretty at first, but later has long black stickers—eliminate that new weed we didn't have at the old house.

3) Some of vacant lot grass isn't soft late in season. Pull those out when you learn to recognize them.

4) Some weeds grow pretty flowers and no stickers. Encourage those. Move some of their root-infested dirt to where the other weeds were growing.

This progresses at different rates in different parts of the yard. I also have mint from my friend Jeff's old yard, and onions from my sister's. Those all spread on their own. Vinca is here; it spreads itself too. In some places, those have replaced the native non-stickery flowery things.

I haven't documented all these things, but eventually I expect to. Some are on my 100 Species Blog, but not the middle species, just the evil level 1 and some of the gifty intentional kinds of plants people will actually buy. The names are in the URLS:

And in the corners and sunny spots, morningglories:

In gradual little increments here and there, we now have a nice yard around a house we moved into almost exactly eleven years ago. The yard was dead and full of rocks and nails. Some trees were dead and others were dying.

Last night Keith had a friend over, who is a water conservation something-or-other, and had spent the day doing water conservation workshops for science teachers. Keith took him to show him our hot tub, and he asked about chemicals. No, Keith said, no chemicals. We drain it every week or so, all 500 gallons, and that's why that part of the yard is so green. True. I could've said more, but I wasn't there. He said the guy looked pained when Keith mentioned pouring out 500 gallons of water, but there's no law against cleaning a hot tub, and we use less water from the hose now, definitely.

This post burned my muffins. I got interested in finding photos and forgot all about the plan to go back up to the kitchen as soon as I finished eating my eggs and toast. Darn.


Anonymous said...

Speaking of sharing plants ... the mint didn't survive the Tucson summer, but the vinca is doing well and I've noticed the onions coming back. The birds have evidently tired of eating the burro-tale and it seems to hanging in there. Thanks for your part in my yard improvement!

mandaroo63 said...

I love your morning glories. I think we have similar climate, when do you plant your seeds, or do they just come back everyyear? Mint's nice to have on hand. We have some of the prettiest weed flowers in the field next to us in the spring, not too many this time of year, though.

Sandra Dodd said...

The morning glories come back downstream of where they were. :-) Rains and snow wash some away, and some come up, but where I really do want them to come up, I loosen up the dirt and soak the seeds overnight, lay the wet seeds in there and cover them and the water regularly for a couple of weeks.
Here are your links "enlivened."

If anyone wants to know how to do that, it's not so hard. The directions are here:

Sandra Dodd said...

Lori, I'm glad the onions and vinca lived! They'll take care of themselves if they survive a year. Sorry about the mint. Let me know if you want to try again. If you end up with a regularly wet-space (dripping faucet or swam cooler leaking or if you water your dogs outside in the same place) that might help. (I suppose, though, most people get their leaky drippy things repaired instead of going "OOH! I can plant something there!" as I do.)