The ones with the wild lawn and the jungle for a flowerbed. This is because a) I’ve learned that I really dislike gardening; b) somehow tons of grass seed got into the flowerbed and really took to all that soil TLC we did in the spring; and c) it takes Adam a really long time to mow the whole lawn with his pusher mower. One of our friendly neighbors with a rider mower had been doing our lawn and that of the senior citizen next door (this makes our yard self esteem so much higher), but his mower broke.

But this weekend that all changed. I weeded both flowerbeds like nobody’s business because it was finally cool and dry enough to be out there for hours. I finally decided to conquer my total fear of that flowerbed (you wouldn’t believe all the different species of spider and cricket living in there now), but it meant long pants, long sleeves, gloves, and boots laced up over my pants.  Hence the need for cool weather. One neighbor took pity on Adam’s electric mower and offered his rider mower for our use, but before we could even get that far our friendly mowing neighbor was out with his newly fixed machine and did it all for us! We’re not really sure if this is pure neighbor friendliness, or if everyone on the block is sick of our yard being a blight to the neighborhood. Either way, it’s been tamed.

Here are some before and after pictures:

lawn before

I tried to say it looked one of those untamed wild English gardens everyone raves about, but no one was buying it.

lawn before

You can sort of see the line where the neighbor’s tidy lawn ends (left) and our untamed wilderness begins (right).

flowerbed before

Yep. That grass is almost as tall as the window, and I didn’t know weeds could get that high. Can you find the gnome?

walkway before

I lived in constant fear that delivery guys would be pulled off the walkway by creatures living in there.

weeding in progress

Halfway through weeding this morning. It was getting there.

And now for the after photos:

scorched earth

It looks like scorched earth out there, and you would not believe the exodus of creepy crawlies, but it was all worth it to be able to see the front of the house again. And the gnome! We sprayed the remaining bits of weed and grass, and we’ll lay some soil and mulch on top of this bed to keep new weeds from growing. Amazingly, all the bulbs and shrubs we planted survived the imprisonment and are still green.

lawn after

We’re not embarrassing the neighborhood now, yay!

Adam told me I deserve some sort of reward for my nerves of steel in the face of my biggest fear on earth (spiders). So I have to decide what I want.