Doing My Best to Turn My Black Thumb Green

A year ago we moved into a new-to-us house. We fell in love with the house, but the yard was in rough shape. I mean rough! I wish I had taken before shots so you could see I'm not exaggerating. The back yard is two levels. You access the lower level via a steep, curving sidewalk. My husband calls it the luge run. When we bought the house, the lower lawn had turned wild--overgrown, waist-high grass and weeds, and every flowerbed and rock wall were wild and weedy.

Last year was about cutting it all back to the basics. The lawn was a bust, so it all had to come out and new sod brought in. The rest was a different story. There were too many beautiful plants that just needed freed from the chokehold of weeds and thistles and junk.

I've never been a good gardener. Every garden I've ever planted has died. I can't remember ever harvesting something edible. But I want to and I've tried time and time again. So it is with trepidation that I've looked out over the beautiful back yard we've found lying under all the overgrown stuff.

Please don't let me kill it. Please don't let me kill it! PLEASE DON'T LET ME KILL IT!!!

I want these trees and bushes and flowers to live and thrive. I love them. I've been out weeding, loosening the hard-packed dirt that clings to the roots I'm trying to pull out. I'm climbing rock walls and hauling out wheel-barrows of evil plants that want to strangle the flowers. I've been sorer than when I worked out with a trainer, and a few times my allergies have kicked in and I've looked like a prize fighter. 

But it's coming and I'm loving it and I'm browsing the internet for new plants, flowering ground cover that keeps weeds at bay, bushes that smell lovely, grasses that will add a little color to the planters in front, herbs and vegetables that can be grown in containers on the deck.

Is it possible to turn a middle-aged black thumb green? I sure hope so.

And now, for your springtime enjoyment (but mostly mine), here are a few of the pictures I've snapped in my back yard.