The Power of an Idea

Last week, my husband and I were sitting on the back patio by the pond. We had just spent the past two days going around buying flowers at different greenhouses – mostly perennials, as I am trying to make landscaping as maintenance-free as possible. The area that was just to the left of the pond is full of colorful perennials, and I love going to the backyard when everything is in full bloom and just marveling at the beauty of it all. My backyard is my little haven, but it needs a couple of things: some privacy (I have two houses that angle toward my backyard and nothing to shield them) and even more color.

I turned to my husband and said, “What if we put yet another perrennial garden to the right of the pond, leaving a little walkway in between? Then in the middle of summer this whole area would be full of flowers.

In typical “me” fashion, I grabbed a can of spraypaint right then (leaving my coffee to get cold) and outlined what I had in mind. My husband liked the idea, so we changed into work clothes and started digging out the grass.

After we dug out the grass, we then had to go hunting for some edging. The one local store that carries it was sold out (go figure), so we had to travel 25 mins away to a different town to get it. There went an hour of our work time. By suppertime, however, we had our new planting area all ready for the next steps.

The shape of the left side follows the curve of the pond if anyone is wondering about the weird shape. I envision that we will soon put in some stepping stone to serve as a path between the two features. We then put down the landscaping fabric and decided which perennials will be placed where.

Then we planted. That night, we sat out under a beautiful evening sky and marveled at the color of the blooms and how it all added something special to the ambiance of the pond. In hindsight, I should have taken a pic of the finished product.

The next morning, I eagerly made coffee so I could go sit outside in the early morning hours to enjoy the flowers. Before that, however, I had gone outside with my phone in order to get a pic of the new perennial garden to include on this post. That, my friends, is when I faced the horror of living where I live.

All of the blooms — ALL OF THEM — had been chomped off by the deer in the middle of the night. Now I just had a bunch of greenery, but no color.

I should be used to this. When I had a garden a few years ago, this happened regularly. I had tried everything to keep them away – soap shavings, human hair, human pee, coyote pee, egg/cayenne pepper spray, and on and on. Nothing worked for very long. After getting frustrated that the deer obliterated my green beans for the millionth time, I ripped out the raised garden beds and started digging the pond that I have now. (That is also the primary reason why I have horrible back pain, but that’s another post for another time.)The deer around here are super tame; there have been times that I have walked out of my backyard and they are standing 15 feet away. Their heads jerk up initially, but then if I didn’t move, they would go back to eating. I swear that these deer think they’re dogs.

I went to the local store and bought some stinky spray to keep the deer away, and I think it has been working. I mean, I have no more blooms for them to eat, so all I can judge it by is how much more everything else has been chomped down. So far so good. Since I did not get a pic when everything was newly planted, I will have to settle for showing you today, post-deer obliteration. I am anxious for the plants to regenerate and bloom once again. And when they do, this time I WILL get a pic!

I scattered some tomatoes in pots so they are getting the good sun that hits this perennial garden. I like the extra pop of color that the red mulch adds, and eventually the blooms will also add color.

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