Rocky, no soil spot? No Problem!

Rocky, no soil spot? No Problem!

After several years of trying various vines along a fence, the light bulb finally went off in my head.  There is a sizable section of fence on the back corner of our driveway, and I really wanted to cover it in beautiful blooms.  I have grown morning glories, white potato vine, Mexican flame vine, passion vine, and star jasmine.  Some lasted longer than others.  The passion vines were decimated by caterpillars almost as soon as I planted them.  Others vines just struggled in the hot, rocky, dry bed.

This bed is shallow, and below a few layers of amended soil you will find nasty caliche and rock.  No amount of building it up helped, and even then the soil would often wash away.  I have been known to keep beating my head against the gardening wall, but I finally got tired of losing.

Then it came to me — I needed a container to fill with good soil.  A BIG container.  I was motivated by a stunning evergreen wisteria that I just had to have.   (It’s not a wisteria at all, it’s millettia reticulata, but that’s one of its common names.) 

This was my motivation:

Isn’t this the most amazing bloom? 

So, off I went to Tractor Supply in Dripping Springs to get myself a small, 2x2x4 stock tank.  Add a few cans of Rustoleum hammered-metal spray paint and I went to town.

I didn’t think the silver would work in that bed, and this is a great color that I’ve used on countless pots, home fixtures and other items when I was flipping houses.

I should mention, in the interest of full disclosure, that the spray paint mist did give my feet and toenails a nice tan that required nail polish remover to take off. 

 Removed the pathetic jasmine vine and smoothed out the tank’s new home.

There – that looks nice.

Last night, with my dear husband’s help, the wisteria, Natural Gardener garden soil, decomposed granite and Native Texas Hardwood Mulch all went into the tank. 

All ready for the rains forecast for this weekend.  Didn’t want to miss that opportunity. 

The Amistad salvias in front of the tank will have to find a new home this fall — with a little less sun.  They struggled there this summer.  I haven’t decided yet what will join the bright edge yuccas in that spot.  Any ideas?  Magenta vine, yellow and lime yuccas, yellow cassias — on the other side is a desert willow.  It’s a hot, dry and rocky bed.  But I want a hot color to play off the yuccas.

Now we wait for the next bloom on the wisteria!

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