In midsummer, I took on a one-off job at a Surfside garden that was pretty much a blank slate except for a few trees.
I brought in two other garders and worked in coalition with them to get it done: Carol of the Elves and my good friend Terran, who had a gardening business at the time.
I planned out the job according to Coral’s vision and drawings of a dry “waterfall” and creek bed with a berm along the street side. Carol of the Elves and I plunged into the job and spoke after a day of moving rocks that we should merge our two businesses and change the name to Amazon Gardening. I could move rocks for 8 hours back then, at age 49, and only feel tired in the last hour…
Carol left halfway through the job because of a crisis pertaining to her friend and my ex: She thought I was awfully cold-hearted to not want to be involved. So Terran stepped in and helped finish the job. That was the end of my work association with the Elves, although I continued to pass extra jobs onto them.
Terran helped me finish the berm that the owner wanted along the front of the garden. I could have finished myself, but did not have the time as I was sandwiching this in among all my regular jobs.
Coral was happy because the job came out just as she planned. She would complete the rough edges herself after having a deck built next to the house.
Below: Coral’s garden, January 2010…still there! By this time, the deck which we had left space for had been built along the house. Coral was there and I told her the true story of the drama behind the making of her streambed, and she said she had no idea, and was just impressed that this assorted crew of women kept showing up to do the work. I’m pleased that I successfully hid the crisis going on behind the scenes.
I had taken on the job of making a series of entry gardens for the new Ilwaco development called Discovery Heights. Below, the north side of the lower entry garden after the developers had put rocks in place.
I got started on the project so late that the clients must have wondered whether or not I was really going to get around to it.
I would not have taken it on at all had I not known that a new partner was going to join my business in January (more on this later). Meanwhile, Roger of Clean Cut Services helped with clearing the ground and adding a nice layer of washed dairy manure.
In 1992, Roger had been the bartender at the Heron and Beaver Pub who had helped inspire Robert and me to move to the beach with his tale of having moved here with no job and little money and living in a place with a leaky roof and cold water only, just to be here.
Meanwhile, the middle garden waited clearing. Roger went up one day and did it, and then it was ready for me to plant it up as one of the first projects of 2005.