This project is squarely in the category of "it'll either kill me or make me a lot stronger." The big idea is to turn a wasteland of sod into a pollinator-friendly garden with lots of texture, color, and dimension. Here at the start, things look a little small! But, if all goes well, it should look considerably different next year.
In the foreground at right is a dwarf bottlebrush that was in the backyard in a container, but it wasn't happy there; so it's joined the front-yard collection. The next row (diagonally left to right) is three black-and-blue salvias alternating with two emu bush plants.
Then there is my new and very exciting addition, a Ceanothus or California native lilac.
And behind everything are two baby manzanitas. They hardly even show up now, but can get to six feet wide and eight feet high. That's why they are in back!
A manzanita now:
And a shot featuring the Ceanothus:
Meanwhile, on the other side of the yard, nothing much is happening because of the leaking drain; but we have put up two arbors, and I just got native California grapevines potted up to climb on them. The grapevines are winter-dormant, so they are nothing to look at now. Summer should be a different story.
In a month or less I should be receiving several more plants, of which some will go along the neighbor's fence. Meanwhile, due to the heavy labor involved in planting here, I expect to get the emu bushes and lilac planted next weekend, and the salvias the weekend after that. Unless today's make-this-easier measures really work, and then I might get all six in the ground next weekend.
And at some point I need to get more mulch, to fill in the strip along the fence. Plus I have to take the shears to the grass that is trying to break out in my pollinator garden, along the cement strip. All this useless, water-hogging grass MUST DIE. Seriously. It will take infinite water, but lets almost nothing through to the earth beneath. I hate it. Don't plant sod.