This old saying is perfect for describing the project that I began over the weekend ... yet another attempt at reclaiming the Rose Field, my largest and most neglected and overgrown garden.
The garden looked like this in the spring of its second year in May 2009.
The best way to solve a problem is to acknowledge it, and I am doing so publicly. My Rose Field is a garden in name only right now. The lovely new garden that you see in the photo above had fatal flaws ... no ground cloth under the gravel paths, beds that are too narrow and without edging, roses planted too close together, etc. (I have learned so much about how to prep and build gardens here since I did this one.) Maintenance was more than I could handle, weeds and brush and seedling trees got ahead of me and my poor garden disappeared. Without drastic measures, I am afraid that this garden will be gone forever.
Same view, photo taken on July 19, 2014
A few weeks ago, I had an idea for how to remake the beds in this garden. As I get farther along, I will show you exactly how the new plan will work. For now, the beginning of the process is to locate and dig out the roses in one section of the garden at a time, then bush-hog and spray herbicide on that section to clear the ground for the new paths and beds.
My husband and I got started with this over the weekend.
There he is, diving in with our DR walk-behind bushhog.
We cleared an area about 40' x 50' and the whole 150' aisle through the center of the garden. Roses that were in this area were moved to other gardens on the property or are living in pots for a while.
I left that one rose you see in place because it was pretty large, had grown back really well from a lot of winter damage, and I didn't want to risk killing it by digging it up.
Center aisle, looking from the barn toward the house.
Can I keep at it and actually get something accomplished in this garden this time? I think so. I believe that I have a viable plan to correct the mistakes I made with my initial design, my husband is available to help me with whatever I need him to do, and I am determined to bring this garden back from the brink.
As I said at the beginning of this post ... one bite at a time.