How I Spent My Summer Vacation

It seems only fair to tell you about the summer I spent trying to maintain a semblance of a neat, orderly lawn.  Last spring, I wrote about the travails of buying and using a lawnmower.  Here I was in April with a new lawn tractor, an acre of yard, minimal experience and fewer yard tools and tons of good intentions.  Let’s just say that if I were to receive a report card it would read: mowing, A-, weeding, F, edging, C.  I get an A in mowing since the mowing was done every week except once when I was out of town.  The minus part comes because there were times when it probably should have been done every five days rather than seven.

It probably wouldn’t matter except that I have this neighbor who admits to being obsessive compulsive about how his yard looks.  Truth is he makes the rest of us (me) look bad if we don’t match up.  This was my first summer ever to do a yard all by myself and I’m just proud to have done as well as I did.  I often thought about the time when our new construction home had no yard and we were trying to grow grass.  I was worrying about the weeds and the contractor said, “Carol, if it’s green, just let it grow until you have grass.”

That statement from years ago seemed applicable to this summer.  I didn’t know what most of the stuff growing in the yard was.  Oh, sure, I knew dandelions and crab grass, but I hadn’t seen anything else.  So, I made the decision to let everything grow and bear the shame.   Most people made no comment about the weeds that grew taller than me.  Over the years, I’ve always thought that some weeds are really pretty and shouldn’t be so reviled.  I love the look of Queen Anne’s Lace and red clover, but I wouldn’t want them to cover my yard.

Now, I know some of the yard’s  weeds are okay while others need to be dug out as soon as they sprout.  With Herculean effort, I tried not to buy a weed eater, but since the ground covers were crawling over the driveway and sidewalk something had to be done.  Finally, I broke down and bought one which I like since it self loads and is fairly easy to use.  It also takes a lot of rough handling.  So, here I am with the first summer pretty much down the drain.  Already I am planning to start making changes since the temperatures are dropping and cooler weather is fast approaching.  Time to get some bulbs planted and move or remove some plants and trees.  The remaining trees will have a bed of mulch surrounding them.  Every day I learn a little more.  Hopefully, some year I’ll know what I’m doing.



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