They say the grass is always greener at your neighbor’s house and in my case that is absolutely true. I have destroyed our landscaping through sheer neglect.

Not something I am proud of, but certainly something I can justify, because for every blade of grass I’ve killed, there was an emotional reason for its demise. Now to some, emotions should never be part of the upkeep of an investment, but to me, emotions are the root of all things human, therefore, I should be exempt from the shame and embarrassment of creating the most unattractive yard on the block. Are any of you buying into this?

Perhaps, further explanation is needed. When I was a kid we always lived in rented apartments and townhouses and there was very little need to educate myself about the proper ways of creating a picturesque landscape worthy of a Better Homes And Gardens magazine spread. Mostly, all of the outdoor labor was done through the companies we leased our homes from, as far as I was concerned, decorative nature took care of itself. Are you following me now? So…the real scoop behind the hellish terrain we lovingly call a front yard is pure procrastination with the “emotion” being my embarrassment of being seen by the neighbors as I attempt to straighten out the mess.

The reason I am writing this story is to further inspire and dissuade all those who are about to follow in my footsteps. The important lesson here is to fully understand that neither emotion nor lack of skill is a valid enough reason to have a horrifically ugly front-yard that becomes the neighborhood’s urban-legend about the creepy house on the corner that eats small children and pets.


Pro’grass’tination — 9 Comments

  1. But don’t you have bad allergies? Yeah? Maybe you could get someone else to do the mowing and weed whacking part, then do the nice fine tuning yourself. Hows come Wylde doesn’t do some of the yard work? I had to ask, ya know?

    Emotions do affect everything including the yard. One year I was especially flipped out for a few weeks, and the backyard grass grew over knee high. I was standing there, safely behind the patio door, looking at it, and wishing it would just go away.

    We didn’t have a working mower and I didn’t want strangers around. Then I remembered the weed wacker sitting on its idle ass in the garage. I was inspired all of a sudden. I got out every extension cord we had, plugged that thang in, and started wacking that grass. I was crazy wacking that yard. On one of the turns I spied our neighbor standing and watching me, but I didn’t care. I realized at some point I was covered in grass. When I was done the yard had heaps of cut grass, and grasshoppers jumping everywhere. Our neighbor came out laughing and applauding, and wanted to shake my hand. I was green from head to toe, and had to hose myself off before taking a shower.

    Whew! Yard work eh?

  2. Wylde and yard work? hahahahaha Well, at least I now know Joella, that I am not the only one to ever battle with grass! We had grass when we moved in, front and back, but without water in the desert heat it doesn’t really seem to fair out well. . .who knew?

    I am seriously considering cleaning up the yard in the middle of the night. . .just to save the embarassment, but the trouble with that is I am usually sleeping! ha I am the king of excuses. . .

  3. i have an idea! why don’t u start collecting rocks! get a rock, bring it home, yank out a clump of dead grass, ut the rock in it’s place and soon u will have a rock garden! if anything decideds to grow all the better – a little color!! – oh a good sized rock u will need not a pocket of pebbles.
    ttys, sue

    • That is a good idea! To give myself a little credit though, I designed and built a little 9 hole miniature golf course in the backyard, fully loaded with live and growing trees and plants. If I could turn our house around so the backyard showed on the street…our neighbors would be praising us. Oh well, all in good time….

  4. Yes, emotions affect damned near everything. I too have kind of let my yard go, perhaps not as badly as you describe yours here! But still the leaves are not raked up and now it’s snowing on them – never a good thing. Oh wait! Leaves are meant to be insulation for the tender plants to make it through winter cold and snow…yeah, yeah, that’s the ticket!

    I like to do more other things now, I am not as focused on how the yard looks, at some point in time I have come to realize that it’s not as important as I once thought. At one time I thought that having a meticulously groomed yard and bountiful gardens meant we were doing well all around, and those horrid yards out there spoke of poverty, lack of education and probably drug dealers…pretty screwed up thinking, hey? Now I think that my clean, but unkempt yard speaks of me being just too damned lazy and busy with other things I have deemed more important to be worried about a patch of grass and some shrubs.

    So those are my thoughts on the “pro-grass-tination” issue….for what they are worth! I am really enjoying your new blog here – please keep it up! You inspire me and you always bring up subjects that make me often ponder things from a different angle. Thanks for sharing yourself and your thoughts with the world!!!

    • Thank you Angie. I am most happy you enjoy my thoughts. Oh the yard….it just sits out there haunting us. haha I think the real problem is in it has gotten so out of control the ‘fix’ seems totally insurmountable. Wylde and I discussed our plan of action this morning…that’s at least a first step.

  5. Did you ever see the movie “The Reflecting Skin”? In that movie is an old house set in the middle of a wheat field. That’s where houses belong, or in the middle of a “weed” field (and I don’t mean pot). Here in Michigan, everyone spreads toxic chemicals on their lawns to make them beautiful, while at the same time destroying the living surface layer of earth. I’d much prefer a neighbor like you than a Chem-Lawn addict.

    • That’s good to know! haha However, I have reached a point to where I am embarrassed to pull into the driveway…so something must change. Like I said in a video…we need a lesbian!

  6. this last few years my yard has looked pretty good because we had enough rain for it to actually grow…this year it was so hot and dry and the city water is just way too expensive to water the grass so it sat….and died….only the weeds grew…..glad my neighborhood is not chemically maintained yards mine looked just like evreyone elses in the area…..only thing is, my cuban neighbor cant stand it when my weeds are higher than hers, she comes over and mows about 15 ft of my yard so my weeds dont over look hers….. 🙂

    oh and I love the chimes at the quarter hour, it reminds me of summer evenings at uncle Frankies house, sitting there waiting for the chime ….not much chit chat going on but knowing when the chime hit 8 my mom would say, “well Elmer think its time to head home?” and off we would go….only to stand out by the car where then, they would all decide to start talking…..

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