It was a full, busy day yesterday (5:30am-5:30pm) chopping through the backyard, removing weeds, relocating some plants that were underperforming in the ever-increasing backyard shade, and spreading a yard or so of mulch among the borders. Though my back was complaining from all the bending and lifting by mid-afternoon, the feeling of accomplishment at the end of the day made up for it. After avoiding the backyard and its unkempt state for most of the summer, to see it transform from a weed-infested, overgrown jungle into something I’d be proud to show other gardeners made the days work worthwhile.
Aside from general cleanup, weeding and mulching, I completely overhauled the southern end (adjacent to our raised vegetable bed) of the back border. It had been a haphazard mess of orphan plants that never jelled together into a cohesive whole and over the years had become an area of nearly full shade from the overarching honeylocust tree. While trying to weed and clean it up, I decided the best course of action would be to dig the entire bed out, and start over with plants more conducive to the new shady conditions. So out came the siberian iris, spiderwort, purple and yellow loostrife, feather reed grass, and maiden grass — which I relocated to an unused portion of our raised beds that serves as a temporary plant nursery/recovery room. In their place against the backdrop of a red-twig dogwood, I moved some orange daylilies and four hosta from other parts of the yard (where they had become overcrowded) and an old garden bench — now more garden art than furniture — from the southern side yard. In the next couple of days, I hope to add a few containers with coleus, and perhaps a couple of shade tropicals to finish off the corner.