Guess what, Virginia? It works.
This bare spot is evidence of the June beetle larvae at work on my prairie lawn, and that white spot is a dab of milky spore before it is watered in:
The bare spots were spreading like gangbusters across the lawn, but in one season the milky spore has stopped the onslaught. The skimpy patches are only about half-filled in but the lawn looks better. Here are a couple of pics after an 8 inch rain we had this summer:
It doesn't look as good right now; we've had a dry spell and it is starting to go dormant because I can't bring myself to water a lawn. Perennial grasses go dormant naturally, and though I'm not okay with bare spots caused by grubs, I'm okay with a lawn that is resting.
I thought I'd experiment with these this year because I always think they are so lovely. However, the truth is that I just can't bring myself to water ornamental plants in the heat of the summer. Sorry, it just goes against my grain, knowing what I know about water and the southwest (see above, in re: watering lawns. Here are the results:
The plants that did all right even without supplemental watering were all succulents. I should get a clue from that.
This is not to say that plants not in containers can't survive well without supplemental watering west of the 100th meridian:
(I adore those seed flags on the blue grama)
And this, a rosemary, watered in for a couple of weeks in the spring and then completely forgotten for the rest of the summer:
Transplanting the desert willow
I felt certain that this was not enough of a root ball when we transplanted a favorite tree from the backyard to the front:
And sure enough, March came, then April, then May...and nothing at all leafed out on it. I had pretty much decided that it was dead and had resigned myself to digging it up and replacing it--a thought that filled me with dismay, since I knew how much nurseries charged for a desert willow that size. But it was so danged hot out that every time I thought about having to get out the shovel, my stomach would turn. So I put it off. And life went on.
Then one day in July I was pulling the car into the drive, and this is what I saw:
There's a life lesson somewhere in that last update.