In my collection I have books about gardening and landscaping that I love to flip through during the spring. I also have stacks of magazines that I’ve looked through once. When I go through the second time, those magazines get clipped up and the inspiring ideas get put into a neatly organized binder. It seems I have a system.
I find all of these great ideas but I have trouble visualizing just exactly how they will fit into our landscaping. That roof top garden in New York has some great elements, but I don’t think they will fully translate to our little backyard in North Dakota.
Our plain house has no hope of color unless we decide to paint (probably not happening any time soon) so we have to rely on landscaping to spruce the place up a little.
Here’s the other problem that sits in the back of my head: I come from a long line of green-thumbed gardeners – Grandpa Quam, Grandma Brown, Grandma McCurdy, Aunt Sharlene and Mom. They all have or had beautiful gardens with breathtaking color. Their gardens were great escapes and places to relax.
That means that I shouldn’t kill every green or colorful thing that comes to live in my yard.
But take me out into my yard and ask me what will go where and I’m at a loss. I will sit in the backyard and just stare at the blank slate. I stand on the sidewalk and gaze at the front yard and I can’t picture what I need. It’s just a little overwhelming. I guess I should take it step by step.
Let’s start by focusing on the positive. Thankfully, the backyard neighbor decided to put up a beautiful fence – I don’t have to make that decision. I bought a great planter at an antique store and I have a home for that in the yard. I saw a cute character home that put color flowers in four terracotta planters and put them on their front steps. It’s adorable and I have plans to do the same. That’s as far as I’ve gotten with the “positive.”
Over the weekend I stopped by the home of family friends and saw the young couple landscaping together. They had a plan, all the tools they needed, and they were in the process of moving out some old bricks to a new home.
I said when they were done they could stop at our house – not to do the work, but to tell me what to do.
I just need “Landscaping by Number” just like those classic paint-by-number art pieces for kids. Just draw a map and show me where to put everything and I’ll be off and running. Once I find that kind of help I think I will be ready for the spring planting season.
Wish me luck.