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oh mah gahd

This weekend, I installed window troughs on the front room sills and planted them with several kinds of herbs: lemon and cinnamon basil, oregano, rosemary, fennel, and cilantro. Then I tackled the rest of the yard: weeding, mulching, and pruning. By Saturday evening the front yard looked like a goddamn BH&G spread, though I left things a little unkempt. I don't like spaces to look overmanicured; a little wildness boosts the nature dose, in my opinion.

Sunday morning, I got back to weeding. I pick one weed species at a time, as they appear in waves and so all I have to do is scan for a particular leaf shape. Right now, it's the henbit, mock strawberry, and a horrible exotic runner that produces sticky tiny burrs if it's left to mature. The ground is just wet enough to allow me to pull weeds out by the roots, but dry enough that I'm not compacting soil or creating a mud wallow. This weather is best spent with a book on the porch, but I've learned from past years that some hard work in April and May prevents misery in July and August. The weed situation's not bad, considering I stopped caring for the yard regularly after I started back at school in 2010. I've accepted that I'll pay for that neglect with two spring/summers of intensive weeding and mulching, then all will be back to normal. In the meantime, weeding is wonderful for the hamstrings, glutes, arms, and hardcore mind-zenning.

While weeding on Sunday, I discovered the footpath addition had kicked out a few flags, so I re-set them. Later this summer, I'll need to pull up that last five feet of path and reposition it further east and away from the house.The shrubs and perennials have rendered it a border at this point, almost hidden as it snakes around the bend. I plan to re-route the path so it divides the front yard evenly, all the easier to extend the beds and make that portion of the yard completely no-mow.

Tonight, I checked the flowering cherry, mainly from idle curiosity, and it had fruit! I got curious and checked the three sandcherries: also fruiting!! I thought these were all ornamental plants and was hoping against the odds, but after a little research it turns out I may have helped things along by planting chokecherries a few years back. Chokecherries cross-pollinate with all types of cherry cousins. With cross-pollination, there's no telling how the cherries will taste once they ripen, but even if everything's a little tart--that's fixable. In other edibles news, the strawberries have taken over the south side of the yard and threaten to actually bear this year. Finally, the milkweed and butterfly bush are pushing up through the ground and clamoring for space in the front, crowding out the weeds and already knee-high. I know from experience, they'll be hip-high by next month.

I really want that lady to come by again, the one who actually knocked on my door the first week of March in order to express her doubt that I deserved the Monarch Waystation sign in my yard.

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