Creating a sanctuary while landscaping on a budget

I´ve long been one who needs a sanctuary, a quiet place away from it all and it always included lots of greenery. Gardening has been a passion of mine for thirty years now. In fact, when I taught at the university, I knew I needed something to keep me busy in the summers. Idle hands and all that. So I worked with ponds, waterfalls, water plants, personal design, pumps, filters, you name it. Was even made supervisor of the boys who built my designs my last two years there. I only mention that because it seemed, no matter where I worked, it was always with young men in their late teens and early twenties, and it always made for interesting conversations.

Well, I´ve recently moved to a location that had a large piece of enclosed property that was, shall we say, mostly a gravel pit. Still, my landlords not only cleaned out the other odd things that had accumulated, but they also allowed me to make a doggy door so my guys had constant access. There are four lovely coconut palm trees, a few other large leafed plants that had seen better days, and one berry tree that likes to drop them on your head. The birds that feed on them drop something else entirely. Still, there was potential, but I´d learned my lesson and made sure most of what I designed could come with me when I move. But, pictures are always better so let me show you what it looked like then. The blankets were for their paws, and my feet, gravel is no fun at all on skin.

Ok, so it´s not Better Homes and Gardens, but it worked for a while
My Pasita checking out her new digs, literally. Never knew a pug could dig such deep holes.

It worked, could listen to music, do some reading, but it was lacking something. Style was the first thing that came to mind. So I started to really look around me. Once I knew what I wanted to do I talked with my landlords and they were thrilled anything would be done at all. So I contacted Mauricio. He´s worked with me before and he understands my Spanglish and mime. He watched me draw what I wanted, said he´d see me the next day and left. Meanwhile, I went hammock shopping, that was one requirement I was insistent upon. I´d slept in nothing but family sized hammocks my first three years in Mexico and my back never felt so good.

My favorite landscaping place, Plantas y Jardines, is located on the corner of calles 25 & 5 and, let´s just say, it´s a familiar place. In fact, the owner had me sit down for coffee and a cigarette to chat, then told me I could go where I wanted, it was my home. That made me smile. And, for me anyway, there´s nothing like wandering among hundreds of beautiful plants. It´s dangerous for my wallet, but, before that part, it´s like walking in heaven.

So, by the next day, plants were picked out, pavers, rocks, the cement guy had arrived, I had wall decorations, and Mauricio´s guys were ready. They patiently worked with me running around getting in their way, constantly. Sand was poured between the natural rock pavers and then smooth rocks were placed on top. No-one´s feet will hurt walking around now. I covered the chairs with fabric to match my new hammock. Dogs were walked four times since they couldn´t go outside their doggy door. Cement was laid, ornaments went up. And, when the day was done I had my sanctuary. It´s not finished, as with all projects it will be an ongoing activity. I´ll be painting some trees on large wooden planks, along with birds, iguanas and other tropical things, but, for now, it works. Here´s what´s been accomplished so far.

Can barely see the hammock, but it is in the shade most of the day, which makes it perfect. First time I was in it, I fell asleep within minutes. Woke up to my dogs´ noses poking my behind, it was dinner time.
Ok, so it´s still not Better Homes and Gardens, but it makes me happy and cost very little as well.

Now on to other projects such as taking you shopping. We´ve been to the Mercado, thought I´d hit a few of the high end shops on Melgar sometime soon. Curious to see if the jewelry stores will let me take a few close up shots. After we hit the high end stores and their beautiful wares, I´ll be off to see some vendors and their kiosks. Always fun products for sale. Well, hope you enjoyed this tiny view of my sanctuary. Have a pleasant day in yours, salud!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s