and a partridge in a pear tree

sadly, no partridges.  but pear trees?  yes!  hubs worked hard to plant our first four pear sticks that will eventually be espaliered into a fence of sorts on our west property line.

we plotted the first tree ten feet from the road.  which sounds like a large distance, and lots of potentially wasted space.  but due to the level of geek i am, i had hauled out the measuring tape in the thick of winter and measured the distance from the road that it took the snow bank to peter out.  granted, this past winter was probably the definition of the ten-year-storm, but i don't want our little tree-fence to be crushed by the snow plow.  they are planted on ten foot centers, which to me sounded too big, but i was assured by the proper authorities that i have to imagine the little branches many years down the road when they will indeed fill in the space.  many, many, many years.

my man knows how to plant a tree; and oh yeah, rockin the white sneaks

with sprinkles of azomite, humic acid, and lime, hubs patiently set each stick into her place.  i'm really grateful that he loves trees so much.  he takes such care with each one.  i'm glad to be planter of annuals and hardy perennials that don't mind my abuse.  i can get away with my slapdash approach, and if my methods cause some plants to fail, oh well.  but trees need a steady hand, and they get that here at good fortune orchard.

hubs getting help from the boy and his pink elephant watering can

starting at the one closest the road, the varieties are:  bosc, anjou, aurora, seckel.  all purchased from fedco trees (an amazing source of all garden goodness).

it feels a bit weird to have delineated the space between our yard and our neighbors so cleanly.  ours.  yours.  the two yards have always flowed together.  decades ago the land was one big farm.  it especially feels kinda goofy due to the odd shape of our lots.  don't know why the deed took our yard from the drain hole through their well out diagonally to a big tree.  but that's how it works here in new england.  there was probably a stubborn cow in the way when they drew up the line.  my dream has always been to acquire their lot after they move on, and make their cool old barn into a studio for me and the hubs.  but that barn is now collapsing in disrepair.  so maybe we'll just get the land...

i also thought it might be fun to record how our kitchen garden is coming along.  not much quite yet.  got seeds planted two weeks ago, and some have started to sprout.

itty bitty cilantro and marigold; basil is that small, too

borage fairly bursting - i'm impressed

more marigolds on this side.  also split and transplanted the lavender, one on each side of the steps

the seeds would probably be doing better if it hadn't been raining and hovering around 50 degrees for the last ten days.  this past weekend, in the window of sunshine along with the pear planting, hubs got half our veggie boxes constructed.

this week will bring a big delivery of soil for the boxes which couldn't be screened with all the wet weather as well as (hopefully) a stump pulled out to straighten the driveway.  i'm trying not to look at the forecast which claims another wet week ahead.


a mother's day miracle

after a disappointing saturday when the tractor guy was supposed to come by but didn't, i felt adrift in loss of ground.  i felt like yet another weekend was going to pass us by without measurable progress.  i threw a bit of a tizzy, and then let it wash over me.  i got over myself, and got some more transplanting completed, including the peonies which were hopelessly tangled in their pit.  but there's nothing i love more than a good organizing of roots via hacking, so i hoped for the best and stabbed away.  after that, i felt much better.

sunday i woke up to a beautiful mother's day card from my sweet son, and sun!  though it was a bit windy, we decided to grab bagels and coffee and head out to the beach for a breakfast picnic.  we met friends there, and while the kids jumped off a giant pile of seaweed, we adults got to relax and chat.

we headed home to warm up, and lo and behold, the tractor was working in the yard!  i couldn't believe my eyes as our uneven yard started to take shape.  i love it when a plan comes together.

it's amazing how fast our trusty guy works.  we got both the perennial and vegetable areas smoothed out, plus a drainage pipe laid at the end of our driveway with a connector to our well that overflows.

hubs and one of our guys putting in the 4" drainage pipe across the driveway

some very satisfying befores and afters:

veggie area before: note root stock apple, w.t. dirt pile, general malaise

veggie area after: note beauty, flatness, and a relaxed feeling

veggie side, different before view

different after view, can you envision the espaliered pears as a fence?

and finally, the aerial views

breathtaking, isn't it?

perennial side, before, note: spruce=curved driveway

cleanliness is next to jennliness

i'm so excited i'm about to burst.  now hubs and the boy are going to make me one million raised beds that i can fill with stuff.  i think the strawberry plants want to get out of the fridge...


bye, bye, spruce!

yop, choppy, choppy!  the fugly spruce got hacked.  it has immediately opened up the front yard, and made me a very happy lady.  it's amazing to me how one smallish change can make such a huge difference.

this is one of those "one small step for the landscape, one large step for landscapekind" moments.  to me, it is just the thing that i needed to see to know that the ball is rolling, and we will have a changed front yard this year.  and that's cool beans.

the stately, fugly spruce, before

this poor tree had been mauled by a sister spruce the year that we moved into the house.  she came down during a storm, across our driveway, scratching, and grabbing, and trying to hold on to her smaller sibling.  while this one survived the storm, it was much worse for the wear.  the ugliest side of course is the street side.

i felt small twinges of guilt when the chopping began, only because i know that many local birds hang out in the branches.  tho when it came down, we couldn't find any nests.  i felt immediately better.  the hubs felt bad about it, but really he has a hard time cutting anything living down, regardless of ugliness.  (there will be a story in a future post about a root stock apple that he wept over...just kidding...sort of.)

and the boy protested the chopping, and wanted to be inside during the show.  he's still talking about how he wants the tree back a week later.  hey, mama's got a plan, boy!

what those guys doin, mama?

so now our front yard is more open, and we can have a straight driveway.  wahhhhoooooo!  just gotta move that stump.

before, watch for the left-most bigass tree

after - hey, there's the house!  holy crap, better plant something else there soon.

hoping our trusty tractor man comes back this weekend for some grading love.  then the momentum will really pick up.

file under progress

yes, progress.  we're 90% of the way there on the new guest room.  and, excepting the photos that are on their way that may grace the walls, this is where we may stay on this room for a little while.  we got the walls painted, the floor patched and painted, the new area rug in, the bed moved in, and a new chair and ottoman purchased and set down.

jenny installing carpet pad - equipment:  comfy yellow socks, extremely sharp knife, plumber's crack

new carpet trial runs

new carpet happy dancing

here are some extraordinarily satisfying befores and afters:

before corner as you enter

after corner as you enter (yeah, lamp needs a table, relax)

before back corner

after back corner, boy checking out functionality of ottoman

ahhhh.  now the boy has a place to "put his babies to sleep" in the ottoman that opens up for storage.

obviously, we're going to need some curtains, a table for the lamp, cool shit on the walls, and some bedside lighting of some sort.  all in good time...

for now, a sigh of relief.  now, if we could only unload the mammoth couch from the living room to make room for the chairs that we got to replace it, the we could de-clutter the media room enough to actually use that room.  and the shell game continues.