The up-side of early darkness

This afternoon/evening the hubby and I re-seeded a strip of dirt in our yard that used to be a stone path. See, we have a very interesting backyard. When we first moved in, you stepped out the backdoor and were on the patio. Walk across that and you’re on a stone path. The path led to a bridge which went over a ditch. Yes, a ditch. Full of…dirt. And weeds. And the previous year’s leaves from the MASSIVE tree that hangs over the ditch. Anyhoo, the bridge led to the other side of the ditch, where there was a teeny-tiny stretch of dirt before the fence (maybe 1′-6″ wide? Maybe?) that you could tight-rope-walk along. It was very cute and quaint (when viewed from the house), and we were kind of excited by the uniqueness of it when we moved in. Heck, we had no little kids, we can handle a ditch!

But here’s the thing: The bridge was falling apart. When we first moved in it seemed a little weak, but we figured we could maybe shore it up a bit if needed. We’re both engineers! Yeeeah, not so much. See, the bridge was made of wood, and it rains a lot here in the Puget Sound. And did I mention the huge tree? So the bridge was in the shade and the water didn’t evaporate. From junior-high science (do they even teach science in junior high anymore, or is it another victim of budget cuts?) we know that if you leave wood in water it rots, and if you leave nails in a moist environment they rust. So within a few months of moving in, if you walked across the bridge it was totally sound until you got..oh…right about over the deepest part of the ditch, and then one entire side would collapse from its supports. Reeeeeal safe. And of course, the bridge was so cool that EVERYONE who came to our house would instantly go to it and start walking across, leading to me running after them screaming, “STOP!!” So we ripped it out before someone could sue us. It was kind of scary how easily it came out…the hubby pulled off the handrail on one entire side in about 20 seconds just by rocking it. We didn’t need a single saw, just pull and the thing fell apart in our hands. *shudder*

Of course, that project finished, we now had a nice stone path leading to an empty ditch. (Have I mentioned NOTHING will grow in this ditch? The ground is solid clay! And it is HUGE. I plant more ground cover every year in the hope that by the time we sell the house it will look somewhat less dirt-and-weed-y.) Not so cool. So we ripped out the path. Amazing how heavy garbage cans full of rocks can be!

But once the path was gone, we were left with two little sections of grass, separated by a strip of dirt that’s 1-2″ lower than all the dirt around it. We are not increasing the home’s value here. I left it for the rest of the summer/fall/winter and hoped the grass would grow on its own to cover the strip of dirt. I mean, heck, the grass grows into all my other little areas where I have other plants and edging to keep OUT the grass! But noooo, not into the nice, inviting strip of dirt I left open for it!

So today, while it’s still late enough in winter/early enough in spring that we are getting rain, I went out and bought 4 bags of dirt, 1 bag of fertilizer, and 5 lbs of grass seed. The hubby and I spent the afternoon spreading out the new dirt, which must have magical growing crystals in it for what it cost, chopping up the layer of clay underneath the new dirt, mixing in the fertilizer, pretending that the dirt we added actually brought the level of that ground up to even with the clay around it, and then adding grass seed heavily to the strip of dirt and more lightly across our whole lawn. See, I have not a darn clue what kind of grass is currently in my yard, so I bought a special “mixture” of seeds that supposedly grow well in the Pacific NW (I’ll show them!). But then I didn’t want a strip of grass that looks different from all the patchy grass around it! So I sprinkled seed all over my existing lawn, hoping some will take root and grow to help the new grass camoflauge. We’ll see.

As we’re working the sun is setting, and we finish up soon after it’s dark (the yard is very poorly lit, it’s hard to work once the sun is gone). I head inside figuring it’s probably around 8, I’ll have a bit of time to grab some food and head to bed. Look at the clock.

6:01

SWEET!!!!!

So, of course, I used the extra time to blog.

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