After picking up all the oak leaves from our front yard this year, we discovered that yet, once again, all the St. Augustine had died. Well, there is one small patch still growing just on the other side of the azaleas in this photo. Innumerable pallets of sod and plugs have gone in over the 20 something years we've lived here. Each time we replace grass I try to make the planting beds larger so we have less grass to deal with.
Yes, we have an irrigation system. Yes, we have fertilized. No, we don't spray insecticides. Yes, I find this photo embarrassing.
We began enlarging the front garden by bringing in a load of compost from the county recycling center. More will be brought in later but for this project just one truck load was enough.
My 'muscle' unloaded the truck and spread the compost for me. I love him. I removed the liriope border that had been behind the white caladiums and in front of the Asian jasmine to use for the new border.
One of the ilex schilling bushes was removed and replanted further down the driveway. A swatch of Asian jasmine was removed and placed in the center of the new garden area. The 'White Christmas' caladiums were the reason this project was not done earlier. I was waiting for them to sprout so I could see where they were and could move them. They were grouped together on one side of the new pathway.
Eucalyptus mulch was applied between the stones of the path and oak leaf mulch was put down in the planting area. Yes, we picked up the leaves and then put them right back in the same place. But, NEXT year this area will self-mulch. Yay!
Most of the plants were just relocated from other parts of the yard. So, the only new purchases were the stones for the path and a gardenia tree which is blooming its head off and scenting the new entry path. I did plant some caladium bulbs which had been purchased a few months ago and were already sprouting. I hope to see them lending color to this area very soon.
Just as I finished this project a rain storm began. What perfect timing to water all the new plantings.
The bushes need to be trimmed, the windows need to be washed, and the front door needs fresh paint. But I think I'm going to put enlarging more front garden areas at the top of the list. It's just so much fun!