Friday, August 20, 2010

The Courtyard of My Discontent

Finally. It’s really going to happen. After living in our house for 7 years, I’m finally going to start putting my courtyard garden together. As a new house, it came with bare, compacted earth, a 3-foot square concrete pad, and a rattling, air conditioner unit. This Saturday, the first phase of the garden design will begin with the arrival of HVAC man and 4 hours of his time to relocate the air conditioner condenser. My days of trying to conjure up courtyard cuteness with bark mulch, rootbound potted plants, and desperately artful hanging of twinky lights will soon be over.

please try not to gaze too long at this sad little arrangement.
the ac unit's new home pre-plant dig
The foxtail asparagus fern (Asparagus meyeri) and the California wild ginger (Asarum caudatum) have been doing great on this north side since they were planted 7 years ago. I have no supplemental water to them since the adjacent turf irrigation provides enough overspray to keep them happy. This shade garden also includes western columbine (Aquilegia formosa), Catalina perfume currant (Ribes vibernifolium) - a fragrant, sprawling evergreen native from the Channel Islands, and heavenly bamboo (Nandina domestica 'Compacta').

getting closer ...
pile of plants waiting for their new home
It probably wasn’t the best idea to try and move my shade plants in mid-August, but I have high hopes for their survival.

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