My front yard “Living Fence” idea was inspired when I planted my backyard pears last year as a replacement for the bamboo I extracted. I wanted a way to create the impression of a “fence” in the front yard without actually putting up a fence. My front yard has been a pretty dismal place – overgrown and thorny foundation plants, weedy grass and no real habitat to support local birds, bees and animals. I live on a highly visible corner lot with a significant amount of foot traffic, so the idea of an open type of fence would not only protect my yard from “short cutters” but also define the space and better tie the landscaping in with the other cosmetic improvements I’ve made recently.
Over the last month I’ve been whittling away at my “Living Fence” project and I’m almost finished (just need to stain the supports). The results are better than I could have predicted. Not only does it look fantastic, but folks that would normally stroll right by are stopping, taking pictures, reading the tags, chatting with me – I even had a cars stop!
Since I’ve been on working on this project in the evenings, when most people are out for their after dinner strolls, I’ve met at least a dozen of my neighbors in more than a just “friendly wave” kind of way. They are compelled to stop and talk (in some cases invite me to their homes), and many have told me how excited they are to watch the new trees grow. One evening last week I talked to 6 different people – and mind you I wear headphones when I’m working so it takes an effort to get my attention!
Interestingly, some have expressed concern that I’ll “lose fruit” to people stopping by and picking it. My response has been “great”! With the addition of these pear trees I now have strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and huckleberries all in easily accessible places that anyone at anytime can pick and enjoy. I have no desire to “protect” or “guard” the fruit that is produced – which is a very freeing feeling!
Ironically, my “fence” project (Do good fences really make good neighbors?) has connected me more to my neighborhood – what a curiously wonderful gift these trees have been both to me and my neighborhood!
As I mentioned in my Riddle: How Do You Fit 12 Types of Fruit Trees on 1 Average City Lot? I have managed to plant 12 different types of fruit trees on my average city lot – see the list of currently planted fruit trees and pictures below:
Stay tuned for an update on the rest of the front yard transformation!