Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Digging out the Garden

I have begun the initial back breaking work ;-) of digging out our front garden beds near the house. They are currently full of native grasses, lavender bushes, grevilleas, a diseased passionfruit vine and weeds. The soil is terrible as the previous owners used to dump all the ash, charcoal etc from their open fire here.

I’ve started by digging out all the native grasses. It’s great that they are drought tolerant but not the best choice since we live in a high fire risk area. So these grasses are like little bombs that would go off right next to the house during a fire or ember attack. I love the grevilleas though so they are there to stay!!

We also aim to move the bed back a bit as it sprawls into the driveway. Then I am planning on planting more drought tolerant plants including salvias, some more screening grevilleas and a new passionfruit vine ☺ Probably a banana passionfruit vine as I think they do better in our climate (cold-ish).

I’ve also been planning the rest of the front garden in detail. I’m a big believer that a grass lawn is a waste of space - "food not lawns!!". So the aim is to turn the front garden into a herbal / medicinal garden with some more fruit trees thrown in for good measure. The hardest thing I'll have to do is rip out a young gum (Mr B's ute is looking very handy here). We have enough gums around us and they just suck the life out out of the soil - and make too much potential fine fuels with dropped leaves.

I would also like to screen the front of the property from the road. My new neighbours are really keen on this also as screening the front of our property blocks a direct view into their entire backyard (and their kids playing) from the road. I’m also going to plant an orange or mandarin tree along the fence line for us to share ☺

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