Tuesday, July 14, 2009

IS A CANTINA KITCHEN GARDEN TOO MUCH TO ASK?






I need help. For the most part, we plan to leave our property in its native state. Life's too short to spend your weekends mowin', when there are so many other great "-in's" out there, like explorin', meetin', tastin', dancin', and partyin'. I mean, really, isn't that why we escaped from the burbs in the first place? Besides, I love my sea of native grasses that ripple in the breeze. But, there is this one area, directly in front of our house, that's a real eyesore. Though it has a few good things going for it, like a Texas Persimmon tree, a Ginko Biloba, some agaves and Texas Mountain Laurel, it mostly just looks weedy, rather than wild, has piles of rocky debris leftover from when the house was built ten years ago, and has steps leading down from the porch that just stop, and don't connect to anything. Ick!

So, here's what I'm thinking: I need at least one little area, somewhere on the property, where I can grow a few herbs, a few veggies, and a few ornamentals, without having to fight the deer on a daily basis. I'm thinking I need a Texas Hill Country/Spanish Mission/Mexican Cantina style courtyard kitchen garden! What do ya think?

It would need a fence of some sort - something that would deter the deer, without blocking the view of the house or making the area too shady for veg. An arched entry with a really cool scavenged gate or door would be awesome. I want a mix of materials and textures, like galvanized metal and dyed stucco, maybe some tile or mosaic, and if we could utilize stuff that's just lying around here, like that pile of stone, or all those cedar logs, that would be veddy, veddy good! I want lots of color (I'll take lurid over pastel any day) and twinkle lights. There has to be twinkle lights. And maybe some cantina lights and decorations.

So, guess that's about it. Do you think that's too much to ask? Do you happen to know a great-but-reasonably-priced landscaper here in the Hill Country, who'd be willing to whip out a design and install the hardscaping for us? Nope, already checked with Pamela over at Digging. Turns out she has the same kind of business I used to - where she does designs for the DIY-ers in the burbs, but the only installing she does is her own! Can't say that I blame her. Anyone else who could get this fiesta garden rolling?

7 comments:

Teri in CO said...

It sounds lovely... but sorry, I don't know who to direct you to... BUT I would love to come and see it when it's done! =)

P.Price said...

I love this idea. Sounds marvelous!

Laura Livengood Schaub said...

Hi Becky,

I'm a designer in California, so can't help much except offer my observations! Would love to see one of those cool stone walls like you have in the upper picture on your blog, along the front of your house (above the ditch). That would level you out a bit, and you could backfill with improved soil for planting. A low Ocotillo-style fence above the wall would give you the enclosure,and I think a gate would be cool! Looks like you have a lot of rock around, put it to use! For me, structure always comes first. Good luck!

lexlane said...

You should ask your architect buddy for some reccomendations.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Teri. It sounds perfect.

musingegret said...

What a maaahvelous idea! However, have you ever read "The Yearling" (i.e. do you know how **high** deer can jump??). I'll check with honey and see if he remembers the good 'stone man' he once worked with.

P.S. That's 'stone' as in rock walls! ;-)

Hill Country Hippie said...

Ooh Laura, thanks for the great ideas!

Yes, ME, I have heard rumors that deer can jump a six foot fence without breaking a sweat, but I'm hoping what I read in another classic children's book will also hold true. Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote: "The garden behind the little house had been growing all summer. It was so near the house that the deer did not jump the fence and eat the vegetables in the daytime, and at night Jack kept them away." John's been talking about wanting a dog, but the question is, will he be willing to leave it in the garden at night, or will it be upstairs in bed with us?