Friday, March 13, 2009

Adventures in late night gardening

I'd like to say up front that I apologize for not being a more wonderful blogger. The truth is I (Lindsay) have been experiencing some computer problems (hard drive death, considering throwing it off a second-story balcony). Blogger has been acting weird on my other computer. And now my camera battery is also dead, and I can't find the charger. It's one of those weeks, right? So I won't be able to show you photos of our magnificent Garden Posse adventures until the digital gods resume smiling on me. 

Fortunately, the garden gods have been just beaming at the Posse. Well, kind of. So two weeks ago, we dug into the hard, compacted soil underneath the "Greetings from Austin" mural, with the blessings  of the property owner. Who was moving his vintage fire department truck at the time. It was neat. Anyhow, we planted a thin strip of sedums and bluebonnets, along with a ghost plant and a jade plant donated by a neighbor, on the right side of the mural. On the other side, our diggers were not having so much success. We decided it would be best, and look better, to build a raised garden bed with a wooden frame. 

Travis, bored over the weekend, built us a frame. But he wasn't going to be able to make it on Tuesday, so he dropped it off beforehand. When the Posse arrived at 7:30pm, the frame was nowhere to be seen. Who steals a garden frame? Seriously. We were puzzled, and not a little disappointed in humanity. Everyone else in the area seemed so nice. Without a garden frame, our plans were in a bit of a bind. 

So I ran off to GAGA, a few blocks up, thinking that even if they didn't have extra wood, they might have an even more creative solution. Unfortunately, it was closed. Across the street is Happiness, an adorable succulent and gift shop. I thought as gardeners, they might be sympathetic. They were all sitting around a table, drinking beer when I ran in and explained myself. One guy said, "Sure, we got a pile of donated wood," and I was whisked back to some workshop area where Vic and Ryan decided they would just build us a brand new frame to order. "Bada-bing, bada-boom!" is how Vic described it. He had some colorful expressions. 

We measured the bed and returned to the workshop. In less than 10 minutes, we had a brand new, very sturdy garden frame. The comical part was when we had to tie the frame to the top of my station wagon, and drive back to the mural with hazard lights on. And after that, everything went as planned. We filled the frame with rich soil and  compost, and planted a ton of plants. And it looks great. 

The Garden Posse had triumphed over adversity. We were extremely lucky to have found such generous and able people to help us out. Guerrilla gardening is like that - people take and people give. And it always seems like the people giving are giving so much more than what is taken. It gives you an optimistic feeling about humanity.

There's still a bit more work in our plan for the mural - it involves a truckload of free mulch. But next week we'll be relaxing from this week's adventures. We'll be meeting at 7:30 pm at Salvation Pizza for the pizza and beer. And checking out the 34th street garden, maybe doing some weeding or replanting. We hope you come hang out.

And thanks to Chaz for stopping by to say hi and drop off plants on Tuesday! Hi!

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