In Search of Daylight

June 5, 2014

Here are before and after shots.

The before was taken a few weeks ago and is a bushy tangle of trees; from left to right: a tangelo, a Meyer lemon, a sycamore, all in front; and in back, the last remaining redbud. Further cluttering up the front are a handful of old fortnight lilies, an unruly rosemary bush, a couple of leggy nandinas and a newly planted Matilija poppy.  But the biggest offenders are the trees.



It’s heavy, dark, you can’t even see the house… it just looks weighty and unkempt. And the frustrating thing is, it’s very kempt… but who’d know?

I am despondent… well, in a landscape design kinda way.  I am eager for some daylight. I’d like to lighten all this up and give the yard some definition.  I’m sure I’ve kvetched about this before.

A couple weeks ago, Frances and I removed most of the tangelo and trimmed way back the Meyer lemon.  Yesterday, with Derek the bee guy’s help, we removed some strategic branches from the sycamore (the two pile’s worth in the street).


Think it helps?

The tangelo stump’s coming out in the next couple of days, along with one fortnight lily. We will put in its place something smaller and lighter in density, like a pluot maybe. Looking for fall color and spring blooms.  Something eye-popping for each season.

The Meyer lemon will hopefully thrive in the backyard.  When it goes, we’ll have a lot of daylight in the middle, giving a better street view of the terrace and the flowers on it.

I think we’ll continue to hack away at the sycamore until we’ve shaped it into something more elegant.  There must be a way to preserve its canopy of shade while giving it a more uplifted profile.

Eager, as well, to build a short split rail fence along the border of the bed that butts up against the house (hard to see in this picture).  I think that will go a long way toward offering some definition.

Should probably start all over from scratch.. but instead trying to work with what’s there. Definitely gives us a lot to hack on every Wednesday.