|Weeds and our ugly front footpath|
Monkey Man and I have divided our outdoor spaces. He is in charge of the front and I am in charge of the back. Our front garden is a jungle. No matter what I say, Monkey Man will not listen when it comes to the front yard. Too many trees planted too close together and lots of weeds. Tall people need to duck to get under the tree at the gate and short people need to watch out for side-splaying vines that'll poke you in the eye and thorns that'll rip a hole in your special cardigan. Monkey Man never does real pruning. Actually, that's not entirely true - whenever we are running late for something and I have just managed to herd the monkey family to the front door, Monkey Man will decide that it is a good time to do a little fingernail twisting of a couple of twigs. And a little foot-sweeping of the path. Monkey Man knows better than to make suggestions about the back, but if I do some pruning I need to hide the evidence. He thinks that chopping a branch from a tree is akin to chopping an arm from a human.
|See - a jungle|
|Try making your way down this garden path|
A little way from us, some neighbours have done wonderful things with their front nature strip. Check this out...
Our neighbour Mr. P. planted a row of almond trees along his nature strip when he first moved in many years ago. Unfortunately, they're not the sort of almonds I get excited about - they're bitter ones only good for desserts I don't know how to do. But I've seen old ladies in black dresses carrying ladders to pick a basket of almonds from these nature strip trees and I reckon that's cool.
Now I'm not usually one to advocate civic disobedience but...
I know that councils can get a bit uppity about nature strips and what you can grow on them. When I looked into my council's laws I discovered that I was supposed to get a permit to plant a nature strip garden and that I could only plant from a list of their recommended species. A list that doesn't include edibles. I don't recognise the names of these plants and I'm pretty sure that any nature strip garden made entirely from a little list provided by the council is going to be boring! Now I was always a very good girl at school - never got a detention. And I'm a very well-behaved adult. I've only once back-chatted a police officer at a WEF protest way back in the late '90s and that's as bad as I've been, I promise. But I'm going to break this council rule! I'm going to plant a garden without a permit and I'm going to plant some herbs in it! Provided I don't plant any noxious weeds, or bushes that'll obscure people's view of the road or stop people making a track from the footpath to their cars what harm can there be?
I'm dreaming of herbs growing on my nature strip for all who care to share. Things like mint and sage and rosemary. Things that'll grow big and survive without water or too much attention. I'm dreaming of bushes and flowers but I don't dare dream as ambitiously as the place up the road. So I've been trying (not entirely successfully yet) to propogate some herbs. I'm not going to spend money on plants for a nature strip that might be destroyed by a passing drunk on a Saturday night (we get a few of those) so I'm just going to use stuff I already have.
I'd love to know about any nature strips in your area and get some ideas. In fact, I'd like to take a look at any lovely nature strips out there. If you like, you could email me a photo and if you don't mind I'll pop it on my next nature strip blog post for all to admire.
|Vietnamese mint I propogated getting ready for my nature strip garden|