Wednesday, October 31, 2018

31. What's Next

Since I'm no longer afraid or timid about dreaming big, I've got big ideas about the future of my backyard:

I want it to be a gathering place in the temperate months. A respite for myself, my family and friends. A getaway in a cul-de-sac on a property where the sidewalk ends, literally. I am dreaming of patio parties and workshops for littles where I can introduce them to gardening, planting seeds, cutting blossoms, and feeling closer to nature.

Phase two of the hill transformation will include building two more retaining walls—out of cedar—on either side of the existing flower garden.
The overarching goal for that space is to fill it with visual detail and plant enough stuff (a very technical term) that eventually there is very little weeding to do.
I will expand the size of my cutting garden with more rows of zinnias and sunflowers. (More flowers to share!) I will split my enormous pampas grasses and transplant them to other parts of the hill knowing that they will help fill the space and discourage growth of renegade weeds. Also, more grasses to wave in the wind, thus simulating Kansas prairie.
I envision planting lavender up high along the fence line. I love the color and the look of lavender. I also like that it waves in the wind, takes up space, and requires little maintenance.
By next fall the retaining walls will be built, so I'll know where are the best places to plant bulbs—tulips, daffodils, gladiolas. I want to look out my window in the next few years and be delighted by all the visual features of a space I transformed myself.
While I have no plans to move anytime soon, I do like to daydream about leaving that yard far more beautiful than when I got it. And thinking about the patio parties I will host, the stories told and marshmallows roasted around the fire pit. I like thinking that the bulbs I plant will delight future dwellers as much as the tulips that have been blooming every spring since I moved in fifteen years ago.
I will continue to document my journey on Instagram (@journalingjulie). I will continue to be inspired by the gardens featured in some of the accounts I now follow, especially @puscinaflowers in Italy.
I am energized and inspired thinking about how my gardening will influence and factor into my writing. I will be forever grateful for my willingness to lean in to the discomfort I felt about my yard and to follow my curiosities. It was a life-changing summer.

Late season blooms

  Thank you for following me on my journey.


  1. Yay! Congratulations! I love the dreams you are entertaining and the plans you are already making! I can't wait to see the continuation and transformation! Well done --on the garden inside and outside of you... and with this series!

  2. I hope to someday score an invite to a garden party. :) πŸŒΎπŸ’πŸŒ»πŸŒΊ

  3. Julie, you make me proud like a mama peacock.