My backyard is relatively unused. During our first few years as homeowners I have used the backyard a few dozen times. Most of the time those were spent on our small 8×10 slab where my smoker/grill is parked.
The grassy well-irrigated lawn does not have my foot prints on it much. Occasionally, I have ventured out there to play around with archery. But, the range is limited to 20 yards so it is not really adequate to that hobby.
Our gardeners use the yard much more than we do. Their use is limited to cutting the grass. Twice we have had them clear out and straighten up our flower beds.
Aesthetic values are first for our yard. We like looking at it from inside of our house. Everything is neat, attractive and pleasing to the eye.
Now, make no mistake, I can imagine a more useful backyard. Move us into the country and take down the wall and fencing and we have a positive improvement. Back up our property line to a massive forest or thousands of acres of undeveloped woods.
Make sure that there are plenty of Oak trees scattered about that will drop innumerable acorns and give the flocks of turkey a place to roost for the night. Allow for groves of low hanging bushes so that the deer have a place to call home. Lease enough acres for gentlemen farmers to plant crops that give pheasants good habitat.
Make sure that there are enough ponds scattered to attract waterfowl, sustain several species of warm water fish and give the beavers challenges to build their dams. Once the dams are built and the lush water grasses flourish, maybe moose will filter into the region. Allow a few deep ravines to carve out a place for elk to roam.
This is a backyard to thoroughly enjoy. God’s creation at its best is just outside of my porch will give decades of entertainment. Living off of the land will not just be a hobby but a choice of life.
On a brisk Autumn day, I could see bundling up, rocking on a chair with a cup of hot cocoa in one hand. Movement catches my eye. Slowly, I bring up my binoculars to my line of sight.
A herd of deer are grazing through the woods. The dominant doe is alert. Behind the herd is a massive buck looking for love. I smile and my dream breaks off because it is time to go to work.
photo credit: brucefong photography