Monday, March 21, 2011


Today I wanted to write about something that I think gardener's feel all the time.....doubt.  Will it work? What will it look like? How will I go about and accomplish this? How will this plant combination look?  This feeling especially comes into play when you renovate an area like what we are doing here at the El Presidio gardens.  We have two homes for sale and two projects going on simultaneously.  One is our pool getting filled in with dirt while the other is the complete renovation of our side planters.  Old vegetation was destroyed and new material is being added.  Essentially 3 gardens are being revitalized at the property and they are all being handled at once.  As you can imagine, for people looking to buy a new home, this can be an eyesore for everyone including the current homeowners.  Several realtors have come onto the property and are wondering what's going on with the pool and gardens.  A lot of new homeowners only see what's in front of them as I did when we purchased our place here at El Presidio. However what most realtors or new homeowners don't have is the information needed to address the issue of what is going on with the property. Today the president of the HOA told me about a situation that recently happened with a homeowner seeing our pool and upset that we were getting rid of it.  Again, the pool is an eyesore for many people and it was stated at the last meeting that it would be filled in soon or by the end of the month.  This was welcome news to me and for many homeowners here as we look forward to it getting done.

Doubt.  My vision doesn't waver when it comes time to rip things apart.....especially after this property had been neglected for over 20 years!!  It's difficult to do at first because the destruction is so great and vast that it makes you wonder if you did the right thing.  As I am seeing things fall into place, I am reassured that it will all come together.....but it takes vision and guidance for those who lack the imagination.   I plan, organize, write, and do a photo shoot around the property and every year I am seeing the little changes we've made in different places and it's all coming together nicely.  I have found that my job has been primarly to remind homeowners to keep the faith.  The HOA is doing some incredible work right now and saving our place from financial collapse.  By shutting down this pool, hundreds of dollars are being saved a month towards our emergency savings fund and other maintenance issues.  I want to erase people's doubt and tell them that everything will be okay and that we have a plan in place.  By the end of this work, I hope to be in a Tucson magazine talking about the process of how El Presidio Gardens came into being.  Sometimes people can make a mistake in their planning and that's okay.  The important part is that you have a plan for all of it.  If Plan A doesn't work, what is your Plan B?  There is always a compromise between gardener and HOA or homeowner or spouse in our own ideas regarding landscaping.  The tricky parts are patience and finding a compromise to fit the big picture.  Until next time.....


  1. I'm sure you've tried to keep everyone informed of the projects. Some just don't see the final result until it is done. Hang in there.

  2. I have never been in a clean slate situation in terms of garden installation.

    But you are right. If there is a plan in terms of what is to be planted, where, size, water/light/heat conditions, it is a matter of time and options.

    If one plant or plants pass away, options have to be in the planning...

    Congratulations. I never read a post on this issue before.

  3. We also live in a set of units and have a body corporate which is similar to a HOA. Owners are always complaining that the fees go up but then keep asking the landscapers to do more jobs, which increases the time spent here, and of course the cost! I decided to improve the landscaping in the common area and went ahead and planted some surplus plants from my own garden. This improves the value of everyones property and I gain from living in a nice place, and have more space to garden in! You are right often it is hard for others to see the big picture, I look forward to your updates.


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