Gardens finished just before rainy season

Yes, we’re still here and going strong. You just haven’t heard anything from Mexico since January, and there are some good reasons. The biggest is health issues — first for Leslie, then for me. I won’t bore you with details but we both spent some time in a hospital. Leslie was very sick in January and February. In mid-March — about the time she got significantly better — I got sicker than I’ve been in my life, and that lasted until early June. Now we’re both doing very well. We have some terrific doctors. Some are not-so-terrific, but you get that in the States too.

The other big reason I haven’t posted anything is because there was nothing to report! Nothing happened in the first few months because we were dealing with other issues. Now, however, I can show you our new landscaping, which includes a super little herb garden.

We hired Enrique and his crew to renovate the gardens, front and back. They put in a variety of flowering plants that should provide color all year ’round. He also reworked our front courtyard and it looks great. We wanted to replace the fountain in front because it was directly in front of the door and a few people almost fell into it when walking away from the door. Plus, it didn’t work anymore.

We thought about moving it and replacing all the tiles in the courtyard. Enrique had a better idea. His crew removed the fountain and replaced it with a tile medallion that gives the courtyard a whole new look while retaining the original tile and saving a lot of money. Enrique also moved a palm tree from the back yard to the front courtyard and added lots of color in the two north corners.

The herb garden includes rosemary, basil, thyme, parsley and tons of cilantro. There’s also some green leaf lettuce and two zucchini plants. I plan to add some jalapeño plants soon.

Here are some videos to show you what the new landscaping looks like. Turn your sound on because I’ve tried to provide some explanation, although I don’t know the names of all the plants. First is the front courtyard:

The new front courtyard. We hope to put some planters on the low walls on either side of the gate.

Next, here are two videos of the back yard. First is the new plantings, and second is a look at the new herb garden and our three fruit trees.

The back yard, including the newly painted fountain that looks MUCH better.
The herb garden and fruit trees.

Leslie and I are enjoying all the color. We’re especially excited that we’ll probably never have to buy cilantro again! We tried to grow it when we lived in San Antonio — too hot. We also tried when we lived in Illinois. No luck there either. It’s going great guns here — but you would expect that, wouldn’t you?

Our timing was excellent on this installation. Enrique’s crew finished just a few weeks before the rainy season began. We get rain here at Lakeside generally from mid-June through the end of October. Most of the time the rains come at night, but this past week we’ve had a few days when it rained all morning. Highly unusual. I actually turned our sprinklers off because we don’t need them right now. It may not rain every night, but there’s rarely a gap of three days between storms.

Some of the big rains come from feeder bands of Pacific hurricanes. Most hurricanes make landfall farther south or they stay out in the Pacific. Some drift north and hit the Baja peninsula. I’m very happy that Fabian and his crew finished sealing the roof before the rains came. We won’t have to do that work again for at least eight to 10 years.

And finally, a picture of Ziggy and Marley:

They’re all grown up now. Just hitting their first birthdays and they can’t share the kitty bed anymore!

I’ll close with some “before” photos of the landscaping so you can see the difference. I hope it won’t be six more months before a new post!

Hasta luego!

The front courtyard as it used to look, with a non-working fountain that was in the way.
You can’t see the old fountain. It had horses on it, and didn’t look Mexican at all. Enrique’s guys painted it and now it looks great. Many of the plantings were overgrown and well over 10 years old.

10 thoughts on “Gardens finished just before rainy season

  1. Beautiful gardens and what a lovely place to relax and enjoy the outside. Very good to hear from you. Take good care being sick is never good. Glad everything is better now. Elaine


  2. Glad you are both getting healthy again! Your yard and patio changes are beautiful. Enjoy!

    Sent from my iPhone



  3. Glad to hear you are recovered. Eileen will be jealous of your gardens. Been busy here. Have been hosting a 21-year-old Afghan refugee for five months. He’s amazing — incredible English, bright, witty, intelligent (great discussions of religion, politics, history, etc.). He’s been accepted into Western Connecticut State Univ for the fall semester, going for a degree in accounting, and starts work as a bank teller next week. His family (parents and five siblings) still is in Kabul and we’re working on getting them out. Among other things, it’s been fun cooking Afghan food with him — with his mother on the phone tweaking the recipes as we cook! He’s also been helpful around the house — we just finished a 14×14 slate patio … I could have done it myself, but it was nice to have a 21 year old hefting the slabs! Stay well. — Jerry



    1. Thanks, Jerry! Glad you had help in your construction project. When you live here, you learn pretty quickly that ex-pats help the local economy by hiring Mexican workers. There’s no DIY down here! The guys we’ve had work on our house have worked hard and they’ve done great work. Come down and visit!


  4. Good morning,

    May I have the contact information for Enrique please. We have a small courtyard that needs to be redone or helped. We live in Ajijic Centro Mountain side.

    Thank you so much, Linda

    Sent from my iPhone



    1. Hi Linda! His name is Enrique Pineda. Best way to reach him is WhatsApp at 333 440 6364. His email is Speaks nearly perfect English and is easy to work with. He likes to look at a situation and devise a plan for it. Let me know if you have trouble reaching him. Tell him you were referred by Leslie and Mike Rogers in Riviera Alta.


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