Even though we no longer have our almost ten acres out on the range, its been a real treat having a proper yard again where things will actually grow. In Montana, our soil was so heavily clay laden (and the water with a high sodium content) that all we had was wild prairie grass. And while the grasses certainly had their own renegade beauty, we are thrilled to be surrounded by landscaping with blooming flowers and the small beginnings of a vegetable garden here on our (sub)urban homestead.
The previous owners did a splendid job of landscaping the yard and building a stunning pond and waterfall. They also filled raised terraced beds with nice rich soil! We are on a steep learning curve in regards to pond maintenance (Ben and the boys spent all of Mother’s Day emptying the pond and using the wet vac to suck up the sludge that had accumulated), plant identification, and all around botanical maintenance. There are frequent surprises as we gradually get to know our “land”: a small strawberry patch on the hill; raspberries; a patch of rosemary; garlic; lettuce (I’m almost certain); grape vines; and dwarfed fruit trees (one apple, one pear, and Ben just planted an apricot tree that he snagged at Sprout’s). I personally am beyond thrilled to finally have a small spot near the back of the house for a kitchen garden. I’ve been pining for one for years now! Last week, I plopped some herbs into the spot this past week: dill, parsley, thyme, basil, and chives. Botanical bliss indeed.