Phase IV

My first planted lily ready to bloom!

When I first bought my house, I would go in the back yard and see the ivy growing there. And I would say to myself, “This shit has got to go.”

And for years, I never touched it. I thought about clearing it, but every time I would mention this particular notion, people would gasp like I had just threatened to slap a puppy. “YOU CAN’T GET RID OF THE IVY!” they said. “IT’S GREAT GROUND COVER!”

Yes. The infamous ground cover argument. Except for the fact that I would rather have grass there, because ivy is pretty much useless at best and a menace at worst. And for me, it was in the menace stage … climbing the back of my house in ever-growing numbers.

See, I can deal with mowing the lawn. Neglect your grass and it gets a little high, makes it a little tougher to mow, no big deal. But neglect ivy, and that shit is everywhere.

So, today I was starting on Phase II of my plan to reclaim my back yard. Except the weeds were dug in, the sun was brutal, and I kept having to wipe sweat from my eyes every 2.6 seconds. Not fun. I would need to poison the shit out of that area and then wait for a cloudy day to rip it all out. And with this being Western PA, this could happen sooner rather than later.

I looked around at what else I could do. Last weekend, my girlfriend and I had been looking at the ivy that was climbing my house. She pulled some of it and noted how easily it came down. This was likely because of how dry everything was, combined with an earlier poisoning spree.

I figured if I had to wait to move on Phase II, I could at least start on Phase IV. Phase IV involves clearing ivy from the back of my house, and the area is in the shade … so I figured I could rip the ivy down that was climbing up by my kitchen and feel good about my day. And as I pulled it down, I pulled down some more. And some more. And an hour later, I had a pile of ivy and weeds up to near my waist, and had basically cleared the back bed.

You can still see the remnants of it on the walls …

Phase IV just needs about another few hours of weeding, some small wall building (because there’s already some “stone walls” in place, which is why I could never just mow it in the first place) and some planting, and it will be off my “to do” list.

I still feel kinda dumb that I’m kind of excited about landscaping and reclaiming my back yard, but it’s as though with every few hours that I put into my house, the better and better it looks. And the better it looks, the more I want to do. Unlike weight lifting or whatever, this stuff has immediate and tangible results. I don’t have to wait weeks. That’s pretty satisfying.

So, yeah, not according to plan … and humble beginnings. But as long as it all gets done, right?


2 Responses to “Phase IV”

  1. June 26, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Save me some of that ivy. I’d love to have it run amok in my back yard. It’s too difficult to mow.

    • June 26, 2013 at 6:05 pm

      Will do. I still have some on the other side of the house that I will pull up and drop off.

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