Loving the outside



As my friends will tell you, I have always had a disdain for yard work.  My frequent quote was “I hate Outside” from Logan’s Run.  Between allergies and an intolerance for heat I’ve avoided yard work as much as humanly possible.  While I was working and going to school full time, I was able to justify hiring my yard work done.  Now that I have more free time than extra money, I’ve decided that it’s just time for me to learn to like it, and maybe even learn to love it.  So this morning I went out with the goal of getting my front yard at least presentable and non-citation-able.

Things I have learned:

  • I apparently bought a good lawn mower years ago, because it started right up.  Now, said lawn mower has a leak in the fuel line, and the rip cord thing is broken.  So before I tackle the back yard, I need to figure out where to get parts and fix those things.  It probably needs a new blade too, but I’ll cross that bridge once it’s not smelling up my garage with gas fumes and I don’t have to fish for the rope tied to my rip cord in order to start it up.
  • I can be proud that I figured out how to start all of my lawn equipment up – lawn mower, weed eater (AND I figured out how to use it to edge), and hedge trimmer.
  • Trimming hedges evenly takes more skill and practice than I anticipated.  My hedges are destined to look shaggy for a while.
  • Fairies have apparently stolen some of my yard equipment.  I could have sworn I had hand clipper trimmer things and a leaf rake, but I can’t find them.  I’ll make another sweep through the garage another day and then start making a list.  I’ll probably hit my mom up for any extras she’s got laying around, since she’s been a yard/plant queen my whole life.
  • Gloves are a necessity.  I know I have several pair floating around, but if I can’t find them quickly they’ll go on the list.
  • My yard has gone to absolute hell in the couple of years since I’ve concerned myself with it.  I have more dirt and anthills than grass in the front, as well as an overgrown flower bed.  My game plan is to find some ant stuff I can spread with one of those spreader thingies, and research some grass seed options and see if I can revive the front lawn.  I plan to cut back as far as possible the side flower bed and put down one of those black plastic barriers and mulch for a year and deal with it next spring.  The back yard I’m just going to keep at bay for a while since it needs completely re-graded and probably re-sodded.  I’m going to have hedges that need re-planted but that also is going on next year’s list.
  • I can only stand about an hour in the yard even if the temperature isn’t nightmarish, and I had the first asthma attack I’ve had in probably a year.  I should probably start wearing a bandanna or something over my mouth and nose and maybe even hit my inhaler preventatively.

All in all, it wasn’t bad.  My front yard doesn’t look great, but it looks better.  I haven’t even tackled the forest of the back yard yet, I may consider that tomorrow before all the gas evaporates from my mower.  I do feel a sense of accomplishment, and it wasn’t the torture I remember yard work to be.  I think if I chop things up into tasks I can accomplish in an hour, spending 2-3 hours a week on the yard, that things will shape up rather well and I might even start loving it.

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