Square One and a Half


I had to go back to October 2011 to find a photo of the pampas grass it its full glory.  When we planted it, it felt like we’d finally found a solution to growing things on this approximately 18 x 70 foot slope.  It’s gorgeous, but it blocked the irrigation from watering the bottom of the incline, was beginning to reproduce, and would make wonderful wildfire fuel.


Okay, so this is a Before Shot taken this morning looking up at the slope between our house and our neighbor’s garage, before we had some nice gardeners clean up for us.  They took out the 4 remaining pampas grass stumps–Hydra had them cut back severely and had removed two entirely–and did a general cleanup.  We were going to just have them remove the stumps, but they didn’t want a whole lot more to do the whole slope.


This is the after photo.  It doesn’t do justice to the amount of work they did because some of the overgrowth was hidden behind other stuff.  Also, there were a lot of dead leaves under the pyracantha tree at the top there.  They filled their truck bed and our 90-gallon trash barrel with clippings from the whole slope.

Again, last October.  Pretty, but also overwhelming.  The long leaves will slice your skin and the beautiful fronds will make you sneeze. Hydra did soooo much work on this between then and calling in the pros to work on the last of the root systems.  Whew!


I feel sad that we had to take out the pampas grass and that we went so nearly back to square one, but we do have some shrubs and herbs to rebuild with.   We’re thinking we’ll put in a fig tree, and some small trees that will allow ground cover to grow.   This slope was entirely bare when we moved in and that bottom wall wasn’t there–Hyrda built in around 2007, I think.

Here we go again!


4 thoughts on “Square One and a Half

  1. no says:

    Wow! It must be a relief to have it under control again. I kept going back and forth between pictures. Really nice to be able to see the difference!

  2. Sundry says:

    Yes, that and another 5 hours out there myself today, and progress is starting again!

  3. urban bamboo says:

    Thank you! I’ve been trying to identify this gorgeous plant that I’m seeing/photographing on my hikes through the canyon–now I know it’s pampas grass. 🙂 Sorry you had to cut it down; it’s so lustrous.

  4. Sundry says:

    Urban Bamboo – Yes, it’s lovely, isn’t it? But also terribly invasive and flammable…and we’re in wildfire country. Sigh.

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