The Front Yard Project
Here’s a little progress update on the the grand Front Yard Project. We (mainly Jefe) have been busy tearing out the chainlink fence that was crushed by a tree that fell during an ice storm a few years ago:
It’s a mess. There was a TON of blackberries and weeds we had to take out. Not to mention trees that actually grew THROUGH the fence:
It’s a lot of work! I still don’t know if we are going to build the new fence ourselves, or hire it out. We got a quote and…OUCH! I am of two minds about this: we would save so much money if we did it ourselves, but if we hired it out it would DONE in a week and we wouldn’t have to worry about it anymore.
Aside from the fence, one of the first projects in the Front Yard I am going to tackle is converting the ditch in the front to a bioswale, or rain garden. Here’s the ditch:
To give you some reference it’s about 75 feet long. The first thing I am going to do is solarize the grass and weeds with black plastic. It’s going to look like crap, and I am a little embarrassed, but then I have to remember that our yard has looked trashy for years, so what’s another month or two, right?
The landscape designer I hired last year came up with a list of plants for the bioswale that I am starting to source. In order to save money I am trying to start as many as I can from seed, which so far isn’t going all that well. I decided to try the winter sowing method using old water jugs that are turned into mini greenhouses. I planted these back in January and only one has sprouted so far.
Here are the jugs! Not all of them are for the bioswale specifically. Only the Elks Blue and Slough Sedge.
And only the Slough Sedge has sprouted. These plants are suited for wetlands and will be planted in the bottom of the swale because…well…they can handle water. Variegated golden sweet flag, which is another pond/bog plant will also be planted. I actually found some of these at my local Lowes but I haven’t purchased them yet. Also on the list and not purchased yet are dayliliies, which will be planted higher up on the slopes. The other plant I am trying to start from seed is Juncus patens ‘Elks Blue’, another grass suited for wet places like rain gardens. I bought more seeds this week and am going to try going the traditional route of starting them under lights since they don’t seem to like the jug.
And…last but not least…a landscaping strawberry will be planted along the top edge on the street side. I actually have some of these in my back yard I think I can just transplant. Every little bit helps!