Saturday, June 18, 2011

Planting Joy

For years I've hated my front yard.

Two intruders, bushes we certainly did not plant, appeared one summer near the sidewalk and proceded to grow larger and more unsightly. The "island" in the middle also annoyed me, with its stump of a tree we had cut down, its uninteresting evergreen bushes and its ground cover that somehow never covered the ground. Every time I drove up, I cringed. Well, not every time, but enough to make me think, "This is a widow house--sad."

This year I decided to fix the yard. Not by myself, of course. I called a landscaper who had done some work in the back. When we met, I told him I wanted azaleas. "You can't have them," he said. "I only plant them in yards with a sprinkler system."

I was disappointed. Then I thought about it. Azaleas signal spring in Houston, but how long is our spring? About three weeks, then the azaleas are just large green bushes. So, okay. No azaleas.

Instead, he planted lantana, iris, day lillies, bottle brush, knockout roses, and some other things I can't name. I can't believe how lovely my yard looks now and how it has lifted my spirits this rather depressing summer. Yes, it probably isn't the best summer to plant. Texas is in the midst of the worst drought in history. My water bill will probably put a dent in my finances for the rest of the summer. Unless we have a tropical storm and it starts to rain...but I don't want to think of that. I'm too happy enjoying the newfound beauty around me.

What cheers you? Please leave a comment--they make me happy, too.


Bella said... [Reply to comment]

Thelma, congratulations on your new yard! Isn't it wonderful to invest money in things that bring you joy? I can't think of a better investment than beautiful flowers you can feast your eyes on every morning as you drink your coffee or tea. And plant life provides one with such wonderful positive energy! It's a win win! Good for you. We'll worry about the water bill after the summer! :)

Laura said... [Reply to comment]

I have never been one for planting or taking care of plants, for that matter. In fact, I recently had someone come out and rip up all the beautiful flowers and grasses the previous homeowner had planted because I couldn't take care of them. My house looked like we'd been attacked by foliage, and not in a good way. Thankfully, my friend's husband is a landscaper, so he has agreed to do landscaping for us at cost, planting low maintenance items. I have to say, though, that after reading your post, I am a bit sad that I cannot bring myself to care for plants. What you've described sounds so beautiful. And let me say this. If the plants make you happy, who cares how much your water bill is? It's worth making cuts elsewhere. :-)

Leah said... [Reply to comment]

Good for you for planting the beautiful flowers and allowing yourself to smile when you see them (even if you're water bill goes up!). It's amazing how such beauty and color can just lift one's mood.

thelmaz said... [Reply to comment]

Thanks for the comments. And, Laura, thanks for signing up to follow.
Whee! It rained today--in Houston that is an event. We aren't even sure any more what that stuff is coming down from the sky. So no watering for at least 24 hours.

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