Monday, January 18, 2010

Some Before's and After's

When we first got here things were kind of a mess - 10 months of no one here turned things into a jungle. We cleaned things up and even then when it rained the area at the bottom of the driveway would get muddy and was messy. Our non 4wheel drive vehicle has a hard time getting up anyway, but if it is muddy? I started moving plants from unwanted spots and putting them down near the driveway to stabilize the slope on the right. Then some time later put cuttings of Croton on the left side.

Between the Croton I am putting Mani - the hope is to get rid of mowing (I mean grass) down there by having Mani take over. It doesn't really need water and makes a nice carpet of green with yellow flowers at times. The Croton are growing well and helping to hold the soil.

The biggest source of concern was just outside the gate - the slope would lose dirt when it rained and there is a small house up there! We decided to build a small wall to tidy it up and stabilize things.

Then I planted a small ficus (looks like sea grape but isn't) on the left and small trinitarias for color.

Yesterday I repainted the walls to match the house (Tropical Mango). It has been almost a year since I did the house and this kind of finished things off. Look at how big the Ficus is! The trinitaria kind of stink but serve a purpose.

Up at the top of the driveway the old Acuacate was another messy area. I am still trying to get it right. There was a small line of rocks and a bunch of mixed up plants. Messy messy messy.

Today it is looking better. I built a small wall that might need to go higher. I put in my new favorite plant - Firecracker Plant - and it is starting to get some height and spread and flower. Behind them are a hibiscus, bird's of paradise, cordaline and gingers.

The bottom of the driveway needed help. Who wants to mow or weed whack down there? I got tired of sweeping up dirt and of looking at water lines when we drove up.

Today there is a little wall (doesn't look orange but I just painted it yesterday) with some plants growing nicely. I planted teeny tiny silver grey shrubs that are doing well where they get sun and not well under the lemon tree. I put some flowery other shrubs in the shady spot and time will tell how they will do. I put little starts of mani (cuttings off other ones from in the yard) under the shrubs and finally they are taking off! I use cuttings since half of what I plant dies because we can't water down there. I don't mind losing free plants. Anyway, it is almost covered and holds the soil nicely and looks lush and green against the orange. There is always something to do, but nice when an entire area is permanently tidied up and can be forgotten. The wall area along the driveway gets weeded occasionally but pretty soon won't even need that? Once I can get the Mani to spread on the left and the Croton grow up that area will be done. Now we just have to be concerned with the rest!


Fran and Steve said...

So much work, but so much payback! It's amazing how fast things grow. It seems like only yesterday you planted and now look how big everything is! Fran

Rosa said...

Wow, amazing, I love your yard, I only have hillside and I mean not much that can be done. But I love your views, you guys worked hard for it, so enjoy.
p.s. Keep March 20th free for my party!

Anonymous said...

Rosa - Hillsides are a challenge but often make really interesting gardens...I'd be happy to give you some ideas! katrina

Rosa said...

Well, when you come over, bring it on. We are not there enough to do it ourselves, but we do have a great guy that keeps our landscaping from going wild.
When it gets closer, we can talk about the location.

Minerva said...

Great improvement!