today, i started for-real tackling the "garden."
I grant you, it's a stretch to call it a garden. it's a tiny little courtyard space a tthe back of my house, and two very narrow beds running along the side of the house (which is where the entrance is).
nevertheless, i got the place de-trashed and weeded. it wasn't a lot of trash, but it was a lot more trash than i expected. also, a lot of the plants are just in bad shape. I pruned several of them, but I don't know if many of those are going to make it.
my landlady is also helpful. she's going to remove the stuff in the back that we can't use, so that we can have the space. I'd managed already, this morning, to go through the shelf unit of paint cans and chemicals and figure out that 90% of them were not useable or simply empty cans (and rusted through pretty good). since she is building the house next door, the workmen are able to take care of those cans for us. I put the good paints/etc (used just before we moved in to spruce the place up) into our 'secure storage' area, but she said she'd be happy to take them when her garage is finished (week or two?). So, that means we'll be free of all of those chemicals! In addition, she'll be removing drawers (plastic) and a workbench.
we, then, will be able to garden! i'm going to transplant some agapanthus from the front walk to the hillside at the back of our house -- that is the back "wall" of our garden. I'm going to mix agapanthus with some local grasses, too, and hope that those grasses just start to take over so I don't have to weed out clover so frequently. but, clover is great green manure, so I don't mind so much. i plan on putting down gravel so that the mud from the hillside isn't so much of a problem (it rains a lot, so we get a fair bit of soil down there).
i think that will work.
then it's a matter of just putting in some potted plants, building a swing and sand box, and putting a bench out in the same area with the sand box and swing.