This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

March 12, 2013

Behind the scenes at The Tropical Paradise

One of the worst mistakes that you can make in the garden is losing access. I'm not talking about the main garden path, I'm talking about access to the back of the garden, and the watering system.

I've been working on clearing up a bit of a mess that has evolved over the years in what I call "Wiener Dog Highway". It's a narrow strip that I can get in behind the garden. It's where the 1/2-inch main water line is (you can see a little bit of it there), and of course, it's where Macintosh, the good little wiener dog likes to hunt for her geckos (actually just common wall lizards, and she really doesn't have much luck).

Anyway, all gardens need access. The best designs follow the concept of a "perennial border", which are always no more than 6 feet wide. That allows the gardener to be able to reach from each side without ever having to step into the garden bed. A good idea, and one that I started with. But if everything gets overgrown and you can't get back there, it's time to clean it up!

Like so many things in gardens, the main idea is to keep this invisible. But it's not magic that makes it work, it's just "behind the scenes" stuff.

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