Sunday, April 09, 2006

Day 1: Spring clean up

I took a rare moment to reminisce about last year and my initiation into the "gardening" world. [Sigh ...time for reflection and pensive thought.] Then I started to think, "Don't I have a congealed mash of leaves to clean up... like soon?"

A congealed mash of leaves, that's how I referred to Fall's leaves that were left on the garden last year and I am sticking with that name. Last year it took us 3 weekends to clean up the front and back yard and after we were finsished composting and bagging and hauling and raking and back breaking and leaf picking and splinter removing and callous hurting and complaining and ... I told Matt, "You know we'll have to do this all over again next year." I almost thought the For Sale sign would go up right then and there.

I read somewhere that Spring cleanup should take place in March but I wasn't too antsy about getting out there with my rake. March was so funky this year (60 degrees one day and snow the next), I thought I should wait for a "sign" to tell me when it was ready to get out there. And it appeared ... in mid-march. I saw my neighbor and her husband out there cleaning, braving the cold for the sake of her garden (don't forget, she "gardens", whereas I "land manage") while Matt and I, toasty under the covers, watched them from our window. "Wow, they're cleaning up already," we observed as we drank our coffee. Lethargic and shivering at the thought, we looked at each other and fell back into the covers -- that was gonna be us... and soon.

Fast forward 4 weeks -- here we are, in the yard cleaning up. Better late than never.

My legs look incredibly short in this picture, but Matt wanted to take it because I'm wearing my JLo glasses. Hey! If I have to be landmanaging when I could be reading magazines and/or biking, I better look cute while doing it.

We have about 5 trees on our front yard alone. And our total yard is only 50 x 135. That equals = a lot of friggin' leaves. Oh, did I mention the crabapple tree? So raking is a BIG part of spring clean up at our house. We have a lot of landscaped areas with plants and mulch so when you're raking, you're trying not to take off too much mulch.

Plus, there's a lot of ground covering. Last year, I referred to these as "viney things" so I feel proud to refer to them now as ground covering. Although I haven't identified what kind of GC they are yet, I imagine they are called sado-masochist ground covering. They actually thrive from being pulled out, yaked, and raked through. The tougher I am with them, the more they grow. Frankly, they scare the bejeezus out of me.

For about 4 hours we raked the front and back yards and we still didn't finish. In the end, we ended up with a pile that any child would pay us to jump into. And we're still not finished!

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