Thursday, May 4, 2017


Our neighbors have the same problem as us--a steep hillside with ever present weeds.

All of us slope-homeowners had ambitious hopes for our hillsides--in the beginning.  I've watched new owners come in, mow down, terrace, landscape, and plant. One new homeowner (us) even built a staircase accessing the slope they planned to conquer; that homeowner planted fruit trees, a linden tree, ground cover, and scattered wild flower seeds not once, but twice, but thrice. If the deer didn't obliterate the nursery stock and seed, the lack of water did, not because we didn't water but for eons of time, the weeds, the native grasses learned to dig deep and steal that precious water.

Daffodils and iris have done fairly well in the early spring, but later plants can never keep time with the wild grass that's king of the summer.

The good thing about our hillside is it slopes below our house. It is its own territory. One can exist in the backyard with nary a glance at the wild weed infested slope. Our neighbors below, are in a different situation. Their slope is upward from the flat part of the yard and cannot be ignored. Those neighbors are having a wedding in their backyard.

That's where technology comes in: they hired nine goats. The goats came for two weeks and chomped the weed problem away.

Which is why I have been thinking about hiring a cat.

On my way to yoga, I run through a large office park with acres of grass, pathways, and hmmmm...a constant need to keep the weeds in control. The dandelions in the grass are shriveling; they've recently been sprayed. The growth along a pathway is brown and dying; a perfect line between healthy and dying vegetation makes it apparent it has recently been sprayed too. Has this massive application been the annual cause of our bee loss?

Time for better technology. Goats.

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