-

-
Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tough Love?

Last weekend, while driving from one nursery to another across town, we took a different route than usual.  It's nice when your travel companion is so accustomed to you hitting the brakes and pulling over for no apparent reason that he doesn't even question what you're doing.  What caught my eye was a sight that might be commonplace to many of you living in other parts of the country or even nearby Portland but here in Tacoma, I'd never seen anything like it before.

A parking strip full of opuntias! (and grass.)

Looks pretty dangerous, right?
 
 
It exists in front of the "Share and Care House."  That's tough love if ever I've seen it!


This looks to have previously been a residential property.  So, was the garden the work of a home owner at some time?  Was it planted by the folks currently using the building?  Loads of soil had to have been brought in to make the berm that allows for sharp drainage.


There were other interesting plants present as well!  Notice the mahonia in the background, one of a pair at the site.  Would you want to be responsible for weeding this?

Not only one variety of opuntia but several were represented.

Variegated yucca looking gorgeous! 
 
So, we've found proof of a passionate gardener  having been here at some time.  Perhaps I'll call the Care and Share House to see if anyone there knows about their parking strip.  Until then, we're left to wonder at this enigmatic sight.

16 comments:

  1. I just want to poke my fingers in and pull those grasses out :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sure you'd be welcome to do just that!

      Delete
  2. It's great to have an indulgent partner, isn't it? That would look so magnificent if it wasn't so weedy. I don't know what the Share and Care house is, but I hope they can revive the garden.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would be nice to see it with a few less weeds.

      Delete
  3. This is unreal! I'd expect that sight in Mexico, not in Tacoma. And although opuntias wouldn't be my first choice for a parking strip, they do work well as a deterrent. I have variegated yucca on my parking strip and by the end of winter it looks rather shabby. Considering the nasty freeze you had in the South Sound, I'm astonished at how perfect it looks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was thinking that this was a brilliant scheme. The drunk folks who fall into my parking strips on their walks home would maybe think about an alternate route!

      It's amazing what a little drainage will do!

      Delete
  4. That is startling! It looks like those cacti are doing quite well, too! I hope you get some history of this planting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I called and left a message today so we'll see if we can track down the history!

      Delete
  5. You wouldn't want to fall over that parking strip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would be a rather unpleasant experience wouldn't it?

      Delete
  6. Nice find! They need to get someone with thick gloves in there to clean it up, easier said than done I'm sure.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now would be the time while the soil is nice and damp and soft!

      Delete
  7. One would have to be committed to take on that weeding job. Still, it's quite a find...weeds and all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It will be quite an ordeal to be sure. I'd be sorely tempted to use a selective herbacide that kills grass only on some of those tight spots. Full body armor might also make it a little less painful.

      Delete
  8. That's quite a sight especially since the yucca is in surprisingly good shape after a tough winter. Someone put a lot of effort into that berm originally.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It looks great but most of the yuccas I've seen around town look pretty good this year. You're right, someone really cared about this parking strip at some time.

      Delete

Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your thoughts.