Not long ago, I went for a walk around town, ending up at the frozen yogurt shop Mr. Yogato, for which I still call myself gardener. The garden I started back in April 2009 has seen a lot of changes in its only three full years under my ambivalent care.
During the first year, I focused a lot on edibles, and I was pretty uppity when people sat on my plants. I harvested incredibly long Italian squash, strawberries, mint, and some rhubarb, and eagerly awaited the day my grapes would grow large enough to flower.
The second year had a lot more ornamentals--I installed the bulb garden, added some herbs, and broke my collarbone twice. I ended up leaving the plants to their own devices for most of the summer, meaning they were dry beyond belief most of the time.
Going into the third year, 2011, I was preparing for working in Saudi Arabia. So the garden ended up with an infusion of new ornamentals that I didn't offload to lucky DC-area gardeners--foxtail fern, toad lily, Canna musifolia, and more. The grapes bore fruit while I was gone, the garden may or may not have thrived--I'm not terribly sure, to be honest.
When I returned, there was a crazy patch of broccoli next to self-seeded Datura in the strawberry/herb patch, and the grape vines were in desperate need of trimming (which I still haven't done). There's a lot of work to be done in this garden--and I'm thinking of letting it all go to the mint and grapes. I want to reclaim my bulbs, which have had a rough go of it in the heavy clay soil that people sit on or drop their bags on. I also want to try to maintain the appearance of the garden without tending to it--mint is probably the best choice. The self-seeded broccoli and Datura get too wild and scraggly without attention. It might take a few years to fully eliminate all the seeds they've dropped over the past year.
But! When I stopped by the other week, there were some enhappying things going on.