We spent the spring and summer trying to get clover to grow in the front yard and it just didn’t quite take the way we had hoped. Tired of having a yard full of weeds and mud, we decided to take a different path and we called a local tree company and they delivered 20 yards of mulch.

I think we might need another 20-35 yards to really get the depth we need to keep weeds at bay, but it’s a start. Last weekend we got some new plants through a friend of ours that is able to order at wholesale prices. We selected native plants that are drought resistant and will hopefully be both beautiful and low maintenance.

I went to Home Depot and got a starter drip irrigation “system” and additional parts and … that’s a lot easier than I really imagined. Now we have each new plant with its own drip water source. Each plant gets 1 gallon per hour, and we just run it a few times a week for a couple hours to ensure the plants have enough moisture to grow and thrive in this crazy September heat.

I’m kicking myself that we didn’t do this sooner. The drip system was shockingly easy to set up, and I just buried all the lines under the mulch so very little digging is required.

Meet Oto

This was one of those things I saw on Instagram that looks cool but not sure if it’s going to work out to be practical. 😅 I originally had it set up in the front yard but I was concerned someone would just steal it, and it didn’t quite have the reach that I was hoping for.

Oto is a wifi watering robot. It comes with an app that lets you customize your watering any way you would like. We are using it in the backyard with our trees to make sure they get established with enough consistent water, but it will water lawns as well and also has support for adding fertilizer and other treatments to the water. It’s a neat thing, but I am always nervous about expensive devices that require a cloud service from the manufacturer. We’ll see if Oto sunsets this service eventually but for now it’s nice to get the trees some consistent water and take at least some things off our todo list.

In the future I think I’d like a few additional fruit trees in the back yard, and we can move Oto to water those.