Saturday, April 2, 2016

Land Grab

When is your garden big enough? In the wilderness there may not be any boundaries to that question.

Last year I began the process of asserting more control on another twenty five feet of ground below the Great Lawn. It is the tangled mess of aggressive plants my garden had once been. That space is the background of my garden. I wanted it to be more floriferous.

It is also a buffer zone between a garden maintained by me and a utility easement maintained by the electric company. I want that buffer zone to speak clearly and visually to their maintenance crews. I want it to shout, Halt!

I cut down two redtwig dogwoods at work yesterday to start them fresh for a new year. I ended up with a big wad of sticks even after giving away plenty that could be used as live stakes for making more plants. The redtwig dogwoods are a plant that will root in the ground from cuttings with a good amount of success.

I had a big wad of sticks. Why not make a screening of dogwood on the ground below the Great Lawn that would be fire engine red in the winter? That would be an awesome background in the winter. So I chopped down the remnants of the wild tangle and stuck my sticks.

Planting live stakes is no big deal garden wise. Hopefully they will take and with a minimum of whacking the wild things, I can get a thicket of dogwoods to grow.

The additional space I claimed is the section above the road cut and below the evergreen shrubberies. Just cutting it regularly will encourage more wild flowers. Having the redtwig dogwoods is a bonus.

The Great Lawn already sits on the lower property line. It might even sort of spill over the line in places. The twenty five feet of ground below is definitely over the line. It's not my land. I just need to borrow it in the Japanese garden sense of a borrowed landscape.

My land grab is not a major concern. The twenty five acre parcel of land below me has been for sale for thirty years or more. People look at it on occasion and never come back. The vast majority of that parcel is an eighty degree slope. It is major steep. If by chance it should ever sell, no problem. It comes with a bit of free landscaping in the utility easement. I just want to borrow it visually.

More of a concern at the moment is the freeze that is going to happen tonight. This Ostrich Fern has frozen the last two springs. Will this be the third time? More to the point, will this rated to zone 3 plant ever get itself in sync with the proper time to wake up?

The suggested low for the morning is twenty six. It is looking to be a freeze of short duration which is good. There may be some slight damage. I expect 'Jane's delicate open petals will be crisped.

The cold is one thing. The wind has been howling and relentless. That just makes it nasty out there. Good luck little Celandine.


Dana Foerster said...

Good luck with the freeze tonight. BTW, I've been looking a many of your March and April pics, and I can't find any eastern Redbud you have any up there?

Cheryl Krause said...

Hope you made it through the big blow OK. Got lots of stuff down over here in Swain

Lisa Greenbow said...

Good grief. My ostrich ferns haven't even started showing yet. No wonder this thing gets frozen. It froze here last night and is to do it again tonight. UGH.. I am ready for a real spring. I wonder if it will happen.
We have done a land grab here too. The city owns the lot adjacent to ours. They never mow etc. I thought my dog needed more room to run so I put the fence over on their property. They have surveyed a couple of times and noted that the fence is on their property. I bet I could claim it but I don't want to pay taxes on it. So I just borrow it.

Lola said...

Cooler here but feels good.

Christopher C. NC said...

Dana we do have a couple of redbuds but they rarely bloom up here. I don't think even the dormant flower buds are cold hardy enough for this elevation.

It sure was a big blow Cheryl. Lots of sticks to pick up.

Lisa my Ostrich Fern came from lower down in Asheville and I don't know where from before that. It was a rescue. It seems to have a low elevation constitution. Until someone makes a stink, why not borrow a little land if you are willing to make it nicer.

Lola after the wind stopped it was a most pleasant day.

Jan O said...

I like your redtwig dogwood plan! It seems that improving the borrowed land is a gift to everyone.