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More on my first birdless summer in years (July 2021)


salon

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Have said  before that I had geese, ducks, chickens, and guineas for some years. And loved them, although having them caused a few problems along the way, even though living in a rural area. More specifically, what I have wanted to do is fix up the front yard for some time, including flowers. The geese would come along and eat virtually any flower I attempted to grow, so I pretty much quit worrying about it while I had them. Also having a grassy lawn was an impossibility, and I don't miss it anyway.

But now, oh, how glorious. I have pots in the front by the sidewalk with flowers, vegetables, even a banana plant; hanging plants with ferns and wandering jew; flowers, including lantana and petunias in a front section. 

Also spent a deal of time repainting the front porch walls, trim and floor, and paring down the stuff that was on it. I repainted chairs and moved most of everything that a paper wasp could seize upon to build a nest. The best part of what is growing, though, are the crepe myrtles, in bloom and providing a shady pleasant atmosphere to the front yard. 

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For example, and I am quite proud of this, I had an automatic cat food feeder on the front porch for a long time. Basically, it is an automatic feeder set into a large plastic container with a brick on the top so that raccoons and other predators can't get in. It was on a timer so that a selected amount of food came out twice a day, time picked when the predators would not be still out. Looked basically like this, except that I put the feeder on a table on the porch, to help cut down ant activity. 

 Raccoons love cat food and I'm sure tried their best to get in, but this just works. But it was time to get it off the front porch., so it has been moved to a part of the porch out of sight that is covered. 

Also pulled out a broken down trellis from the yard that I had put up some years back for wisteria. Folks, wisteria is beautiful but way invasive. Behind the lattice was what I thought was a Texas sage plant but actually was a huge butterfly bush

Before-had a Grey Gardens-feel to it:)

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After- (today) -Also adds some interest and depth to that part of the yard and the butterfly bush, although it's not blooming much anymore, has a prominent place for the eye. 

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Also have put in, or rather, hub worked hard to build, a raised garden that is deer proof by dint of having chicken wire all the way around. Neighbor has had a beautiful one of these for some years. Put up some shade cloth over the top because the sun, this being July, is brutal. Used old deck boards and filled it up with dirt from elsewhere on the property, so the cost of all this was minimal. I've seen one like it, which I modeled this on, for sale for about $1400 bucks. Would like to make two more, and have one earmarked specifically for a winter garden. 

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