Yet, we had to get started on improving our boring not-so-green space, before the end of the rainy season. To overcome both the lack of knowledge and physical fitness, we farmed out the project to our friends Aad and Marian Veltman, who are not only our property managers, but they also conduct guided tours to Costa Rican attractions through their agency ‘Bunki Tours’. There really isn’t a project the Veltman’s couldn’t handle, including landscaping. We may be hopelessly black thumbed, but at least we know when it’s prudent to delegating!
First, we divvied up the garden space between the two of us. Barry got the front, I’ll supervise a backyard transformation next year. Barry has had visions of, not sugarplums, but jungles lately. Whenever we’re in a jungly area, he points out how much he enjoys the shades and hues of green over green over green and all those rich textures. Veltman’s gave us a tour of their garden so Barry could give them an idea, which plants he likes. Marian and Barry also poured over some books to identify his favorites and to make sure, they’d be reasonable choices for our location. Next Marian took some measurements and draw a plan, which she populated with images of the plants, she intended to use in Barry’s jungle garden. This made it a lot easier for Barry to visualize Marian’s landscape design. Hooray for the digital age!
For this initial gardening project, we decided to landscape only a narrow strip of land between the driveway and the hill behind our house, rather than the much larger main section of the front yard. Since we have to put in an automated drip-system for watering during the dry season, we have to spread the cost over time & space. Barry liked both Marian’s design and her budget proposal, so the next step was getting an estimate for the sprinklers and general labor. That too was approved by El Jefe and the timetable for the work was set into motion.
saw the removal of the sparse grass cover, most of which was recycled in other areas of the garden. A couple of existing plants were also relocated so that we were left with a cluster of palms in a stretch of wasteland. Our dirt isn’t what you might call quality dirt conducive to healthy plant growth. So the very foggy Day One concluded with the delivery of three cubic meters of happy dirt.
welcomed a truck piled high with assorted plants. Landscaper Ray and his assistant unloaded and distributed the precious cargo in accordance with Marian’s design plan.
brought the completion of planting, fertilizing and watering.
Unfortunately, no progress has been made since. Poor Ray came down with Dengue Fever and hasn’t been able to install the sprinkler system as planned. We’re hand watering twice a day – naturally, Mother Nature decided simultaneously to take a break from her daily deluges! Let’s hope the majority of the greenlings will make it!!