Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Wood Chips

Those of you following our adventures in Tennessee will know that wood chips are a constant theme in our gardens. Mostly free from the local town recycle stations, but occasionally we have paid for them too. Once again we are having mulch days here and this time we really mean it. This was the first truck load and the big boy got stuck in our mud and had a dickens of a time getting out again. The second truck load was much easier and he stayed mostly on the driveway, to be sure.

Doesn't it look lovely? We can walk anywhere without getting stuck in mud! And the fence is up!!! Yay! That means I can let the dogs out and not worry that they will wander away. Double Yay!! 

You will note that the fence is partial here. The pots of plants are at the end of our driveway and the dogs won't even try to jump over them. We won't be having the fence extend any farther because this is where the fish pond will be built; above ground, three courses of concrete blocks lined with a heavy rubber liner, and visible from the patio. It isn't the very next thing on my list so for a while the pots will close off this entrance. We do have a gate in the fence for entry.

Here's the rest of the fence which surrounds the whole yard. Pretty invisible but high enough to do the trick to keep the boys in. In front of the fence is a planting berm for our hydrangeas and hostas. It rained like crazy just as the job was finished so I will wait til it is a bit less wet to plant.
I have been studying gardening videos on You Tube, mostly Charles Dowding an innovator of  No Dig gardening and followers like Paul Gautschi and his film Back to Eden, and I have gained the confidence necessary to embark on this huge garden for the remaining years of my life.
For example, this area below between our fence and our neighbor's is a pathway which surrounds the patio garden. It is always shady and muddy. Now with the wood chips and in the autumn lots of leaf litter, it will become a productive area for woodland plants and my beloved hosta collection. The depth of the chips will prevent weeds and break down slowly to improve the soil below. 

 As with all my gardens, I prefer to have raised beds, but that doesn't mean the garden is contained only in those beds. Already I have planted peonies and daylilies in front of the patio, in a little berm of good soil. 

 This area was where the pile of debris had been and now it is holding the remaining chips, soon to be distributed up our hill, behind our bamboo and along the rest of the path. But wait there's more. A series of four long raised beds are going to be built here for my veggie garden. It is a very sun baked area which will do very nicely for things like watermelon, peppers, tomatoes, and of course zucchini!


  1. Wow. I can see why you fell in love with this house. The yard alone has so much more potential than the little plot you had in the city. Can't wait to see the vegetable garden. I'm imagining what it all will look like all grown in from your description.

  2. Having others prepare the ground and do the heavy lifting has to be a Godsend for you! And I know in a year everything will look amazing! You have a great start, and hope you have many years of happy puttering!

  3. Just want you to know that I look forward to your email updates more than any other post that arrives in my inbox...My yard doesn't allow for much development because the deer come right up and eat I garden vicariously through you. Thank you for these posts..please feel free to add as much detail as you wish. I suspect all your readers love it!

  4. WOW that truck of chips..... never seen anything like it.... how did they push the stuff out?? Not sure I agree about no weeds and slow break down.... perhaps it is relative, slower break down and fewer weeds.... one thing for sure they will be easy to pull as you walk to the patio.... have dogs with short legs is sure nice... I have one with no hips and he can get out of a blockade fence missing one picket but one the fence is fixed life is GREAT. Last summer new fence on all four sides --- worked with three neighbors and myself/ Not crazy about new fences ..... thousands of dollars later you have exactly what you had before you "fixed" the enjoying YOUR progress.

  5. Wowzie, that's some load of mulch! We've got a rabbit this year, he chewed a hole in our invisible deer fence, the little dear! Love following your gardening journey. In fact that is why I started following you, then found out we had so much in common, dyeing, quilting, Frankie.

  6. Looking good Melody, looking so good!!

  7. What’s up to all, it’s genuinely a fastidious for me to visit this website, it consists of priceless Information. 토토사이트

  8. This is very interesting, You are a very skilled blogger. 사설토토