A sigh of relief heard throughout the gardening realm I am most certain! After months of uncertainty, I had the opportunity to meet my new neighbor this past week. Those unfamiliar with my plight – the previous owner of the house to my immediate left decided to sell. Over the past decade I had slowly created a shaded garden in the narrow space between my and their house. Suddenly I was approached with a letter asking that I remove all plant material from between the houses. Ready for a fight, I said I was willing to remove the plant material that was visibly on their property but otherwise remaining plant material on my property would remain. I later learned that this was a tactic employed by the real estate agent – the owners thought the gardens were an added bonus! I was more than willing to make a compromise – anything to ensure that my children could remain as close to their current proximity with little or no disturbance if at all possible.
The house sold within five days.
Having no resolution I tried to continue with the day to day, but it was difficult. There were times when I found myself avoiding the garden at all costs – convinced that the situation would only end in heartbreak. And then the knock came on the door late one evening this past week.
The new owner is in the midst of doing a number of upgrades before he looks for tenants in the new year. We spoke about a dilapidated fence that separates the properties and me mentioned that he was more than willing to remove and replace it if we would chip in for the cost of materials. Things were off to a positive start!
I’ve been trying to clean out the area behind the actual garden – a space separated with a bamboo screen, where I stored the pots that once housed the majority of the plants that reside in the gardens – there were over two hundred in total! The new owner was concerned about the somewhat disheveled appearance of the area. I discussed in detail the garden that resides there, focusing on the reason behind my planting this area in the first place. He was more than accommodating when I explained how much time, effort, not to mention money that has gone into this space. He wanted to know if he could gain access to the fence using this entrance. I asked only that I be present when he brings in the equipment since I know precisely where the most precious of the plant material is located. Truth be known he isn’t the least interested in gardening and said that he will add a clause into the lease for future tenants that the gardens belong to me, and as such I will maintain them.
A happy ending for sure. In the process of cleaning up the pot storage and composting area, I have uncovered more gardening space, complete with the most wonderful, loamy, compost enriched soil – perhaps the best on the entire property. Time yet to consider new addition for Spring 2013!