Thursday, September 11, 2008

An Update

OK, so admittedly, I was told by several gardening professionals that I would "not be happy" with my choice of grass... And now, of course, I see why. There are patches of bleak brownness giving way back to the desert and growing, just as the edged of clearcut rainforest give way to desert. But that part that is well watered and dense looks just lovely. And true enough it has taken quite a lot of water to keep it going during the torrid hot days of summer here in the desert. I suspect the proponents of the rotator type watering system somewhat exaggerated their wetting power. The patches that succumbed first to the desert were those that are on the edges of the rotators and probably do not get the volume of water the lovely green middle does. But I am still committed to my thick blades of deep green grass, even if I have to baby them along! I mean, seriously, can a kid pick up a bug with a wimpy thin yellowish-green blade of Bermuda grass or the fussy rye grass that gets reseeded come fall out here? I bought a 15lb bag of seed and have started to experiment with timing and temperature.

I did get a chance to use some of my compost on my reseeding experimentation. I is nice and black, just like northern soil. Note to self: Be careful not to shred those fake credit cards that come in the mail with credit offers - they don't biodegrade! At least not in months in the compost bin. I have several strips here and there in my grass! Nor do pistashio shells, peanut shells ace but pistachio, nope. And even though all the books suggest one put egg shells in one's bin they do not totally disappear. They are like little smiling teeth all over the reseeding patches of lawn. They'll keep feeding the soil - plants need calcium too come to find out - but if you are an aesthetic gardener maybe you should just bury them. Me, I kind of like the messy. Particularly since I live in the land of perfection - paradise - beauty - pick your adjective. The neat, tidy, sunshiny, paradisey goodness of this desert does get a little relentless. Seriously, 350 days of sunshine is just a little bit of crazy-making. I know why people want to move to the rough hewn hi-desert....

I digress. But I have many plantings that are really loving this climate - a thriving scilla violacea (that our baby-gal picked out herself), pachypodiums doing fine though a little sunburnt, adenium droopy but haven't figured out why yet, even the orange tree that isn't supposed to like this weather is pretty lush. I right killed a fockea edulis though. Perhaps I'll try again when I have some sort of bushy tree or shrub to put it under. Oh and I got a tiny little palo borracho tree - only 12 inches high - which I thought I killed which is doing really well. Jose, the gardener who does all the things I cannot, like putting in irrigation and trees - said "Isn't it going to be messy when it gets big and push up the wall with its roots" "Yeah, but I won't be around in 50 years, so why should I care!" Seriously, it will get too big for the yard and I promise that when we move I'll have it removed... but I am soooooooo looking forward to its butter colored flowers... in 4, 5, 6 years maybe!