So we discussed ripping it out. My husband tends to be a sort of 'business man'. If you mention some 'business' you're even thinking about handling, you better be ready to strap on your boots (or flip flops) the next day because, you'll be ripping out landscaping with an over-sized tractor before you know it.
So he got to the office on Friday morning and decided that he could spare a little work time, to spend some time with his family. So he waltzes through the door just before 9am, I'm still a hot mess in my pajamas, however, both kids are dressed. [In my defense, Graham did go outside before 7am and came in with grass clippings up to the top of his boots, tracking through the house, and that mess needed to be taken care of before much else.]
So the Slave Driver, I mean my husband, packs us all up and takes us to Lowe's in the F-350, pulling a 24 foot gooseneck trailer (32' if you consider the 8 feet of neck in the 'goose neck'), in West Des Moines, which isn't known for it's livestock population if you know what I mean...
So boys got lumber, to install a venting fan in the shop (more on this in another post) and the girls headed to the Garden Center, to make our selections. In the end, we needed the boys to push a second cart, this was no small job.
When we got home, we first, needed to rip out what was left after The Boss took his chainsaw to the prickers and most of the Cedar trees. This resulted in a bent spade, and a trip to the local hardware and the addition of a pick axe to our ever-growing tool collection.
|The bushes were cut at the base, so you can't really tell how out-dated, over grown and dying, much of the landscaping was.|
The pick axe was effective, but far too much manual labor for all we needed to remove. So The Boss went and got a hefty chain to attach to his tractor bucket to lift them out.
Now, I staunchly avoided getting behind the wheel of this tractor for several reasons. The fact that it is expensive and I don't want to be the one that dents, chips or in any other way defaces it, or the fact that the wheels are taller than I am, or that driving it involves a clutch (never mind that the last thing I drove that had a clutch was my mom's Mazda Miata, in like 1999). Oh, I could go on and on, really I could. But there was no getting out of it on this day.
So, I got up there, and took about a 10 second lesson (I'm usually the type that needs to hear something twice to get it) and off I went. Nervous as hell, maneuvering an enormous tractor only feet from the house we paid too much for, so that our kids could grow up on a farm (not because my husband isn't happy unless he has four-legged ovine mouths to feed) and here I am about to wreck the house and the tractor.
|My view from the Big Girl seat. Chains wrapped around the base of this dying Cedar bush.|
|And we have lift off. No that is not his middle finger, it's his pointer, telling me to stop taking pictures and continue to raise the bucket.|
In my defense, I did manage to push, pull and turn all the knobs, dials, pedals and joysticks necessary and in proper sequence, to pull this and several others like it, out of the ground. It was exhilarating, ripping Mother Earth's guts out after trying to manually chip away at her with a pick axe for hours. Take that!
Then, of course, like any good steward of the land, we replaced what we took with sweet, little, dwarf landscaping that we hope we won't have to #1 touch, ever, to maintain and #2 have to do this again for another 20 years-or at least until Graham is big enough to maneuver the tractor. Mommy is out, and so are my piggies.
Here is the finished result-maybe we need to post another set of pictures next year to you can really see the end result. I still have a couple of 'holes' to fill, but it's complete for the most part. Whew! All in a day's work around the farm.
|By the front door, I liked one of the small flowering plants, so I kept it, you can see it in the foreground.|
|The right side of our front door, with some small cedar bush and hydrangeas in the shade of the birch tree.|
|The left side of our front door dwarf trees and lilies and another little bush that I can't remember the name.|
|Lillies and a dwarf evergreen|
|Mom, should I leave all my tags on my plants, like are still on my Waterford Crystal?|