Growing up, my brother and I were lucky to have wonderful parents who cared about us, fed us healthy snacks, and helped us get a good education.
Rarely did they ask us to do something unreasonable or subject us to cruelty.
That was before beauty bark.
Throughout our middle and high school years, since we moved to the Great Northwest, my parents decided to torture us with the peculiar annual northwest tradition that is beauty bark spreading.
We’d come home, usually in the early summer and realize with horror that under our basketball hoop there was now a menacing pile of beauty bark, threatening to ruin all that was good and holy in our lives.
For those of you who don’t know, beauty bark is just mulch. A mixture of (usually) hemlock and fir leftovers that are ground to a consistency wherein the person spreading the bark manages to get it in his/her nostrils, hair, fingernails, ears, and other places one wouldn’t like a mixture of ground hemlock and fir leftovers.
On one hand I can now understand why it’s so popular. It rains a lot in Seattle. This stuff is relatively consistent and cheap, and keeps plants and other things from washing away.
Sad to say that I now have entered that stage in my life where beauty bark is the logical solution to our landscaping problems.
We live on a high slop and our GeoTech consultant (with some research from Catherine) suggested that layering the slope with beauty bark, then jute mat, then another layer of beauty bark would do the trick to pass the inspection and allow us to plant native species of plants that are low maintenance later on.
We’re pretty much done with the slope as you can see here:
it doesn’t look too bad. Will look even better with plants on the slope.
Did I mention the smell of beauty bark? Some people find it alluring and enticing. I feel otherwise, but I can almost smell it when I look at this picture:
I can’t believe I gave in so easily. I know full well that this will come back to haunt me.