Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Fence, New Beds

On one hand, there is something funny and quirky about having a border of thick, lush, poison ivy growing beside our driveway. It reminds me of the mixed message I used to get at the end of the “Beverly Hillbillies”. I could have sworn there was a long list of “make-yourself-at-home” type phrases as they were smiling and waving from their front porch, only to finish with “Don't come back now, ya hear?” (Turns out it's actually “Y'all come back now,” but that isn't how I heard it.)
Ultimately, though, we decided the poison ivy had to go, so we've been working hard digging up roots and trying to smother what's there with layers of cardboard, paper, leaves, compost. At first, we were just going for the worst spot, but in an unusual burst of enthusiasm, brought on, no doubt, by the spring-like spell we are having, we extended the initial poison-ivy smothering bed all the way down the drive. If we are successful, we will no longer have to run out to meet our visitors with “get out on the right side of the car!” greeting.

Famous friend Steve brought us a load of cane last year, and we have found so many uses for this sturdy stuff. We built tomato tee-pees that worked beautifully. But still there was so much left, and I felt guilty every time I looked at the stack. At the same time, I was annoyed by the neighbors straight behind us. Their landlord decided to trim back all of the overhanging trees (grr! not like he was planning a garden in back, or that they were in danger of possibly breaking off onto the house, 300 feet away! He just doesn't like trees, obvious when you look into that barren back lot.) So now my flat-back, sheared trees cannot block the ugly that is the back of the the two houses on the other street. Poor trees.

But back to the cane... here is the last of it, serving to obscure the view through to the other side and to serve as a backdrop for what is sure to be a stunning naturalized understory garden. I am hoping to get some more cane from Steve so I can finish this thing. Eventually.

Making a fence by hand from cane gives me new appreciation for the workers in some distant land churning out those 6 foot panels. This is hard work.


  1. Don't you just loathe "tree haters"? Maybe he got sick of raking leaves? I like your solution though!

  2. I can't wait to see the finished fence. And I see that wintercreeprer.. (seethe).

  3. I know, it just broke my heart and there was nothing I could do to save the trees. The old owner of the house was fine with it, but the new owner turned it into a rental property, and I guess that means no trees. Or something like that.