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Monthly Archives: June 2013

Suburban Warfare

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Little by little we have begun to wage war on our weed-choked yard.

Daily, Elle and I go out to the front lines and I pull weeds while she supervises from her picnic blanket. On weekends, Mr. Pirate and I both tackle one part or another of our unsightly little postage stamp.

Like the house, our yard basically has good bones. At some point, one of our home’s two previous owners cared about our curb appeal. There are wild hedges out front and evidence of a couple of flower beds in the back. Given the amount of overgrowth though, the last time anyone bothered weeding was probably sometime in the early 90s.

The weeds that make up our lawn have thick and twisted roots systems like something out of Lovecraft. There are roses in the backyard, but as a friend pointed out even a rose is a weed if it’s growing somewhere you don’t want it to.

We’ve had allies in our struggle to reclaim our yard.

Up until last summer, stringy elms clustered up against the back of the house threatening the foundation and blocking the natural light from the east-facing windows. Then Mr. Pirate’s parents visited and hacked them all down.

Last month my folks came out to see Elle and my dad helped me reclaim the clothesline from the monstrous villain that is our grapevine. It yields sweet Concord grapes, but the years of growing out of control had left it a grapevine rampant.

Since we moved in I’ve just taken the attitude that at least the weeds are green. However, having a new little person in our lives is something of a game changer in all things.

We’d both like for Elle to have a good place to play. Good place for me means grass appropriate for our arid climate so that she can develop a love of walking around barefoot. For Mr. Pirate that means excellent climbing trees.

She is not yet mobile so I figure we have at least the rest of this summer and fall to truly become weekend warriors. We aren’t yet on first-name basis with the folks at the garden center. But we’ll get there.