Hello! It is march! I am sore. No really. This post is brought to you by the sound of a rake not raking. Because it broke. I would probably be raking right now if not for the fact that the tools can't keep up, so big and vast is the scale of our yard neglect. The minute I feel like a capable home-owner, a little thing like moss comes and ruins everything. Some time in October, while standing in an unused patch of side-yard that rarely sees the sun, I said to myself, ' Hey, look at that. Is that moss? Huh.' And then walked away. Fast forward to the present day where the moss has grown to kill every single blade of grass and green living thing within a 25 foot radius. It is the Hulk Hogan of moss. I almost want to buy it a tiny little spandex romper. And according to the lawn experts, the only way to make it go away is with liquid iron, and then to RAKE EVERY SINGLE FORSAKEN PIECE OUT. So now we have a barren patch of dirt. Make that many barren patches of dirt. Who knew?!
This is Oregon and it is normal for plants to grow on top of other plants that grown on other plants, and I really should have known. In my defense, this winter has been one of the wettest and warmest even our (old-school Oregonian) neighbors can remember, and the cherry trees started blooming in February. My apologies to those still snow-bound. If it makes you feel any better, it has rained, snowed and hailed in the last 45 minutes alone, and there's a good chance all the blooms will die. Am I the weather harbinger of doom? A little bit. I have spent every weekend of the last month raking my little heart out, re-seeding, planting fruit trees, covering every square inch of space in peat-moss (by hand), and planning the transformation of this thing we call a 'yard' into an actual garden. A garden, you guys. I am dreaming big.
Whenever I get a moment to myself (which is rare), I fantasize about a cottage garden that doesn't yet exist. With a cedar picket fence. A landscaped slope full of rosemary and lavender and jasmine flowering it's heart out on a arbor. (We live on a steep hill currently covered in patchy grass moss.) Raised stone beds in the backyard for veggies. Flowering plums for the sidewalk patch. Pale pink camelia and hellebores galore. Blue Tolix chairs under the lilac tree, which is thankfully, already there. I know you are thinking, 'Hey, aren't you the one who loves fiberglass chairs and all that?' To which I will say, 'Yes. But not outside.' Cement gardens and perfectly manicured rectangles full of tan nonsense make me sad. Weepy even. My garden dream is straight out of Country Living magazine, complete with peonies, Hunter boots, and spunky dogs. Maybe a pond or two.
I probably should have warned you at the beginning that this little rant was going to be all about moss and green things. But it's more than that. Nobody tells you that when you plant two little pear trees, you begin to see things that aren't there. Things that could be. After you plant the trees and rake the moss, it suddenly occurs to you why on earth you've been so distant from even yourself for nearly eight months. 'You are working too hard. Too much. Your mind is always elsewhere. ' It is bewilderingly simple. Something has to give. These are important little lessons a garden can teach you. Aaron and I are working on an amazing project, a big, hopes and dreams and unicorns kind of project, yet I have been too tired to read through proposals in the evenings, talk about design, pour over photos; I fall asleep at the dinner table. So I am learning how to say no to everything else. How to step away. How to take back time as my own if I want to continue doing the things I love-- writing, planning, walking, kissing my husband, games of fetch. The garden that isn't, but could be. Showering would be awesome. Change is around the corner, and right now I kind of want to make out with it. And have a glass or seven of wine. I'll buy a new rake tomorrow.