|Ground Zero – The Garden Awaits
We have lived in our cozy early Craftsman in Alameda for the past 6 years now. I might have mentioned earlier in the year that 2016 is the year to put some care and energy into our house. We have been building up ideas for a while now. It’s time to take things on project by project, and phase by phase.One very under utilized spot in our home is the backyard. For six years now, we have let two rows of rose bushes run wild. Roses though sweet — are difficult to care for and was preventing us from using half of our precious backyard. In fact, the roses were winning in a big way as we seldom spent time in our backyard. It’s funny how detached you can be to a space when you have not gone through the process to make it your own. With a bit of nudging from Phil, I was beginning to realize that the only way were were going to embrace our precious outdoor space was to re-do it and create our own oasis.I have been looking everywhere for inspiration from neighbor’s backyards to business parks. My eyes flit back and forth as I drive through the streets looking for green inspiration. It has been a process.After going to half a dozen nurseries in recent weeks, we have come to the conclusion that we would like a low maintenance yard with a woodsy prehistoric aesthetic. It’s taken a few conversations with nursery folks to come to this realization. The millennial diva in me wants to have a garden that is “special” with “one of a kind” plants. By the way, if you are looking for inspiration and unique species – I would highly recommend Flora Grubb (San Francisco – Bayview) and Flowerland (Albany- Solano Ave).
It’s has been a rich experience thus far. We are able to get involved with the creative process and there is a steep learning curve to getting to know plants. You have to balance aesthetics with many logistics (how large do the plants grow, how much water and sun does the plant require).The process and challenge of taking something new requires that we be patient despite willing many walls. It helps when you have determined a few focal points. You are able to fill in the rest of the space with companion plants.
We are definitely keeping our Meyer lemon tree and 40 foot birch tree. We have determined that we will have have simple large cylindrical pots with cephalotaxus. On the side of our lemon tree we plan on making it green and lush – while towards the fence we will quite simply have 5-6 large bold pots with cephalotaxus which is a particular conifer. I like that it grows vertically up to 6 feet – it will help create a soft barrier. We are coming close to determining what to do on the side to our house – hint: Flowerland’s front yard.
I’ll provide an update and hopefully some photos — next month!