Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Giving Up....

It feels like giving up. It probably isn't. But it might be.

What am I giving up?

No, not food, not chocolate, no, nothing really that matters. No, I'm giving up on landscaping and gardening. My enthusiasm is finally waning. I'm not making any progress understanding what it is I'm supposed to be creating, so I'm going to stop trying.

I've been living, breathing, and dreaming about plants and plant care, designing with plants, pruning, soil, native species, ways to plant, styles of gardens, and studying (and trying to apply) each and every design principle so I can create a plan and get planting.

I give up. I can't figure out where to put the paths. I can't figure out where to put the planting areas. I've purchased two bushes--and already thinking that one of them was a mistake.*

I have to grade the front yard to ensure there is a 1" drop every 8 feet--and then plant the two bushes (probably on a great big mound of soil as I suspect we'll need a truckload of dirt). The husband is working on putting up new downspouts (had to be done as one of them ran down the trunk of the tree we axed). I still want to pressure wash the fence and paint it. And we need to mulch all the foliage we've got stacked in the backyard.

But the planning--I've hit a brick wall and it feels like defeat. I still don't know where to put anything--so I probably won't put anything anywhere. I'm very disappointed.

*The Isanti Dogwood. The beast is going to grow 8 to 10 feet around--if I don't whack at it constantly--though only five feet tall.


drwende said...

1. Your yard already looks a lot better. That's an achievement.

2. Your brain may just need a rest to absorb the information. Did I ever tell about when I lived in New Haven for a year and could NEVER get anywhere without getting lost? I went back for a visit five years later and drove all over without a map and without the slightest problem. Brain just hadn't caught up!

3. If it happens that your brain just doesn't do "garden," you've still accomplished a great deal of improvements, as well as inspiring readers. (Hey, it'd be possible to sit on my balcony if it weren't 105 and raining right now -- and I would never have gotten to it without your prodding.)

Colleen said...

I agree with Wende- you may just need to take a break and let it all sink in! You've done so much, you might just need to process...

I thought of you when posting this: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/ny/look/look-garden-inspiration-in-westport-county-mayo-washington-dc-058595

Alana in Canada said...

Anne--I've copied it down. I'll delete your response so the information isn't here anymore.

Alana in Canada said...

Shucks, Colleen, thanks. It's nice to know you thought of me! And that is a gorgeous "garden." Imagine having to get into your punt to prune!

I tried leaving a comment but AT wouldn't let me login.

And Wende--thanks for the permission to put it down for a while, if not forever. I think the house and yard looks nekkid--but I suppose that's only natural.

Funny about New Haven.

scb said...

Yes, I think your brain needs a rest, and some distraction. My inclination would have just been to clean out the tree and plant some flowers and be done with it, but I don't have the Plan Gene the way you do.

I think it's time for, in the immortal words of Monty Python, "Something completely different".

You've done very well with what you've done before, and a garden is a long-term thing. Relax and read a book, you've earned it.

Mella DP said...

Indeed. You claimed at the beginning that you were more or less building your knowledge base from scratch on this one, and, of course, you jump into everything with both feet (and then some). I bet that letting things simmer for a bit will make the path forward a lot more clear. And besides - up where you live, it's going to be winter in a couple of weeks, right? ;) Really, though, I admire your persistence and systematic approach - I'm beyond hopeless with plants, and likely too dirt-averse to ever sustain interest long enough to educate myself out of that state.

Janel said...

I think it's wonderful what you've accomplished!! If nothing else, you've inspired me. :)

Take a gardening vacation for a couple weeks or until next spring and you'll be fine and probably ready to start again. :)

Alana in Canada said...

Thank you all so much. It really helps to have your sympathy and support.

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