Saturday, August 08, 2009

My Nemesis: The Reappearing Yucca Plant

This spring I wanted to tackle a "small" garden project in our front yard. There is one corner of the front yard that has the best light in the entire yard and I very much wanted to clear the very old yucca plant, weeds, vinca, and no longer flowering bulbs and give it new life. I hacked, and hacked, and hacked at the yucca, eventually creating a hole about four feet long, three feet wide and two feet deep, pulling out all of the exposed root. Yucca roots run deep. I called a gardener friend and he said it was probably fine if I left the rest of it in the ground.

I only half finished that corner garden project because of more pressing yard projects and then vacation season. Sometime in the last couple weeks I realized the yucca had grown back strong and healthy!!! So today I went to the local garden shop and asked for help. They gave me a product that I had to paint on the remaining the roots deep in the ground (knowing it would be impossible for me to pull it all out). This afternoon I opened up the hole again, cleared out the new growth, sat inside the hole and painted poison on every bit of root I could find. I'm so stinkin' sore. And John reminded me that last time I wrestled with the yucca I was sore for two days!

Before our landlords bought this house a couple years ago (unfortunately they spent one year working very hard on making the house "livable" before moving overseas for work), the house belonged to an elderly woman who had let most things go, including the yard. The Kropps did TONS of work in the yard before moving including taking out a big tree in the backyard. We tenderly cared for the new grass put in its place and planted a raised bed full of perennials. But every time we turn around there are new overgrown weeds trying to establish themselves as small trees. I'm scared to even enter the back left corner of the backyard! Weeds taller than me.

Good news is that I scored a MAJOR bargain on end of the season perennials and now I have plenty of flowers for next year for front and backyard! My hope is that I can give the house back to the Kropps having defeated the weeds and with beautiful full (low-maintenance) gardens.

Backyard before tree removal.

Backyard after tree removal. That is the flower garden. I just purchased creeping flowers to plant at the top of the wall to creep down and cover it. I think I actually have to plant them in the neighbor's dirt. Don't tell them, OK?

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