Sorry neighbors! In a nod to my parent’s carefree hippie lifestyle in the 70’s, I’m planting my veggies in the front yard. Pretty scary! I want this garden to work. Badly. So I’m headed to where the sun is and taking no chances. “Six hours of direct sunlight.”
That’s what Duane Newcombe (my gardening prophet) says is the minimum amount of sun vegetables need to produce. I’ve scoped out the yard and although I’ll plant a small patch or two in the backyard by my garage and another by the side of the house, which faces west, it’s the front of the house that gets the sun. All day in fact! That’s where I’ll designate my official IPS (Intensive Postage Stamp) garden.
I was definitely afraid to tell my husband my plan since he’s resistant to change and extremely leery about affecting “curb appeal.” I woke up last weekend excited about the sunny spot I found in the front yard next to the mountain laurels, a landscape fixture in our yard since the 1940’s. The vision came to me in my dreams actually. There’s this ordinary green bush (actually was since it just got yanked Monday!), which took up an 8 x 8 plot of land and did nothing to enhance our front yard. I figured I could get two 4 x 4 IPS gardens out of that space!
But first, I needed to convince my husband that the bush had to go. Ugh. He can be so stubborn! His first reaction was what I predicted, as he expressed his hesitance to let something go that had been there for so long. And then he laid on his fears that I would affect resale value and that curb appeal was everything. In rebuttal, I painted a picture of cucumber vines bursting with yellow flowers, climbing a trellis. I described a neat and tidy garden framed by colorful marigolds. I assured him that I’d actually be adding to our curb appeal and neighbors would thank me for adding eye candy to the block. You see, we live on a beautiful street, where people really care about their lawns and first impressions. A few years ago, when our lawn was literally taken over by clovers, suggestions from caring and concerned neighbors poured in. Scott doesn’t want to ruffle any feathers on our pristine street. Neither do I, but I want my garden.
I’m taking some chances here and I know that. Pretty risky! But I’m fairly confident that Duane Newcombe (rest his soul) won’t let me down. He wouldn’t want me to create any strife with my husband or neighbors. My friend CJ from Montclair Tree Experts knew how intent I was on taking it out and showed up early Monday morning with his huge crane truck and remove the shrub. I literally started jumping up and down with excitement. Now I’ve got to start working on the soil!
Your comments, coming in through e-mail, Facebook and my blog have been encouraging. Keep the tips coming! I’ll take any help I can get!