As the sunlight begins to show the scene outside my kitchen door, the spring weeds wildflowers look like misty ponds scattered over my back yard. Mounds and mounds of purple vetch (Vicia americana) with their millions of tiny purple flowers on multiple green stems seem to rise mistily from the otherwise spring green of the grass.It’s a great sight to start your morning…Until, that is I think about the fact I haven’t run the mower yet this year.
Each mass of the legume is a nitrogen capturing engine at work converting sunshine to fertilizer. It’s whole reason for being is to enhance the growing ability of the grasses I refuse to fertilize. Unlike most American males, I find no joy in the never-ending pursuit of a “perfect” lawn. For some reason, I have always been more than happy to accept bare spots and thin grass in shade. Riding on a mower each and every week all summer long, while a wonderful method of mindless meditation, is not the way I want to spend half a day…With almost three acres of grass (and weeds) it takes that long.
It seems it really doesn’t matter how many trees I plant, I’ll never manage to beat the grass. Besides, with mother nature knocking down trees at the rate she did last year, after almost 20 years, I’m working in reverse.
This year with all of the new areas of full sunshine around the house, I’ll be taking some of these grassy swards and turning theme into gardens…Peas and beans, beets and greens, corn and squash…A little of this and a little of that. Food for grass, an exchange I can work with…Now, if we can only get some regular rainfall…