September 25, 2023


Where Dream Come Home

Stock tank returns to the Circle Garden – as a planter!

January 18, 2023

Happy 2023! I’m again from a holiday blogging split, but throughout the previous a few weeks I was not just baking, wrapping provides, hanging out with relatives, and putting away holiday decor. I’ve been exterior. A great deal. Ripping items up.

In point the cool months are my favored season for generating structural alterations to the back garden. This winter season I made the decision to redo — all over again! — the Circle Backyard. I know lots of visitors will locate this amusing, but I opted to provide back the stock tank, as a planter this time.

A few several years back — 3! can you feel it? — I desired a transform and dismantled my iconic inventory-tank pond. The announcement nearly broke the gardening net, at minimum among the Digging audience. But I did not search back. I required to check out something diverse in that room, with one eye toward making a lower-maintenance backyard. Ha! Is there this kind of a thing?

The future iteration was more classically Southern. I echoed the present ‘Winter Gem’ boxwood balls with an internal circle of ‘Micron’ yaupon hollies, with a focal-stage whale’s tongue agave elevated in a peacock-blue pot. But it just under no circumstances came jointly for a lot more than a number of fantastic weeks in spring (when annuals like tall verbena bloomed) and fall (when compact perennials like purple skullcap mingled properly with foxtail fern). For very long stretches of the summer and wintertime, it just appeared straggly and unbalanced, many thanks to differing amounts of sunlight and shade in the course of the study course of the working day.

Aggravatingly also, a border of ‘Southern Star Blue’ dwarf ruellia seeded like mad involving the stone strips of the sunburst route. Despite its prolific mother nature, it continue to wilted pitifully through the most popular aspect of the summer season. It had to go. And so did the internal circle.

What I fantasized about was a circular Corten planter mattress and background arbor à la this christian_douglas_style yard in Northern California. Dreamy, correct? But it wasn’t in my funds for a do-about with expensive products and labor to make it happen. Rather my spouse provided to assistance me with a Diy edition. Which is additional satisfying anyway.

Out came the shovels, and we dug up the vegetation, gave away some of them, and utilised a PotLifter (a straightforward hauling harness you can find it on the web) to relocate the large agave pot. Then we excavated the mound of soil and moved it onto tarps around the circle. We dug until eventually we attained the packed layer of decomposed granite that supported the old inventory-tank pond.

In lieu of an high priced circle of Corten metal, I resolved a galvanized stock tank would do the trick — in addition it would coordinate, as the outdated pond tank did, with my other galvanized pots and the get rid of roof. My outdated tank was gone, so I necessary an additional. (3 a long time ago, I tried to promote my old tank, but when I didn’t get any takers, I finished up providing it absent. D’oh!)

I could not stand to shell out whole rate for a new 8-foot (in fact measuring 7.5 toes) tank, so I scoured Facebook Market for a employed 1. I observed loads of listings for secondhand cowboy swimming pools, but I did not need to have or want to fork out for the pump extras, and I did not want a hole in the side. Eventually I discovered a tank about an hour away — an individual had experienced a aspiration of a cowboy pool but changed their thoughts — and I bought it for a tune. We brought it household in our truck and rolled it suitable into put. Again in baby’s arms!

Right away the tank gave the Circle Garden new daily life — and it was not even planted nonetheless. Just like the outdated pond tank, it can make the room are living much larger, it generates a significant focal stage, and it provides sizeable peak, even at just 2 ft tall. We took turns standing in the tank, swinging our aged pickaxe, and banged dozens of gaping holes in the bottom of the tank for drainage. We also taken off the stopper that plugs up the tank for holding drinking water. Great drainage is important for plants.

When we’d designed positive the tank was degree on its compacted D.G. base, we shoveled the soil off the tarps and into the tank. A single cubic garden stuffed it up about a third.

While ready for a further weekend to roll about, I dragged my rebar bottle shrub up the hill from the base of the garden and tipped it into the tank. It appeared promising for a pleasurable focal issue.

The next Saturday, and the up coming, my partner picked up a load of Lightning Blend from Whittlesey Landscape Provides. We hauled it by the wheelbarrow load downhill into the yard and up an previous strong metallic pet ramp to dump it in the tank. I couldn’t have finished it all by myself and actually appreciated my spouse getting on this challenge with me.

It took about 3.25 cubic yards, but lastly the tank was comprehensive. It’ll settle about the coming months, and I strategy to top rated it with an inch or two of decomposed granite. I cleaned the bottles and refoliated the bottle shrub, and I applied leftover stone to far better edge the uphill planting mattress. Out arrived these troublesome ruellia also. I dug in yellow spider lily bulbs and purple skullcap among the the golden yuccas. I hope for a excellent show subsequent drop!

The variegated whale’s tongue agave place up a fight coming out of its major pot, and I experienced to saw off some lower leaves that bought damaged. It really should get well promptly this summer months. My authentic notion for serene simplicity — the agave and a field of silver ponyfoot — might have gone out the window when I additional the bottle shrub. One evening, nearly in the darkish, I was out there scooping out soil by hand and burying dozens of recently divided rain lily and oxblood lily bulbs, not not like an eager squirrel hoarding acorns for winter season. Visions of spring, summer time, and tumble coloration are dancing in my head. What a pleasure to be again in the backyard garden again, dreaming of the seasonal changes to appear — and not sweating!

Up coming, the rotting side fence is receiving changed (that’s wherever my gardening spending plan had to go, alas), the metallic arch will be moved someplace else (too much likely on there), and I’ll repaint the shed (maybe changing the shades). In the tank, I’m debating employing sedge or shaggy zoysia as a grassy groundcover to camouflage bulb foliage and include meadowy movement. If the bulbs never pan out, I can usually go back again to the ponyfoot and agave thought. A single issue is for guaranteed: the backyard garden is often a perform in progress. And I have under no circumstances been frightened of the shovel.

So how about you? Are you digging into any gardening jobs this winter season?

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