It finally feels like summer here with warm sunny days, an end to school bus traffic, and summer parties running full force. These are those lazy, endless days which you remember from when you were a kid but think you grew out of. Work is a pain, there are all those responsibilities, but I say forget it and take the summer back. Spend a day in the hammock doing nothing and then read half a book somewhere the breeze is blowing. Maybe a good thunderstorm will be enough to wash the car, and hopefully someone gets the hint and orders some pizza. A sick day is not out of the question, and the lawn mowing can wait another couple days 🙂
I talk a good talk but there is still A LOT I’d like to get done before we click on the automatic watering systems and head to a beach or the mountains. Tulips were dug last weekend, new tomatoes planted, lawns mowed and edged… many other things planted, weeded, mulched, tidied up… it needs it after I was away for a week for work and then completely unmotivated for another week as I nearly overdosed on painkillers while a toothache worked its way out. I’ve recovered from both but surprisingly while the gardener was down for the count, the two teens here didn’t jump in and trim and edge and weed and water like I’d been hoping they would.
Honestly I’d rather not share my garden. I’m tickled when they show an interest, but other than plant a few beans or pick a few onions I’d rather not give over a whole bed to their experiments. I’m sure I would if asked, but the bad parent in me wants it all to myself.
The kids find enough to keep occupied even without having a vegetable garden to weed. Someday I suspect this general disinterest will change and someone might have a plant question, so to prepare for that day I’ll keep expanding things here so that when the time comes I might have an extra snowdrop or clematis to share 😉
I have been dabbling in a few things. the kids may not want to experiment but I’m fine with it. One of the best things is that my little Lilium pumilum is alive and flowering. When I looked up the spelling on this thing it was a little insulting to see it referred to as ‘one of the easiest lilies to grow’. Easy I guess if you don’t keep pulling it as a weed or mulching over it or building a raised bed over it and forgetting where it was. That would probably help, but since it keeps coming back and flowered in just two or three years after seeds were sown, I guess you could call it easy.
Lilies and clematis and penstemon are nice but it’s the little pots of rhodohypoxis which are thrilling me right now. Unlike the monkey poxis of central Africa, the Rhodohypoxis of southern Africa are a small corm which sends up pink or white flowers which look as if they were made of paper by a ten year old. They’ll flower into summer and maybe again here and there late summer, depending on the mood.
They’re not hardy enough for the open garden so mine are all potted, but my less than expert ‘throw them all in the cool but not freezing garage and then put them out again in late March’ method of care seemed to work out all right. A few rotted though, and I’m not sure if they were too cool and wet in March or if they dried out too much over the winter. I suspect maybe I put them out too early, but in my defense I thought they were sick of the dry winter and would like the cool rain bringing them out of dormancy… maybe…
As you may suspect there are a few other things which came out of the garage these last few weeks. The winter garden plants are slowly finding homes, the pots of caladiums and pineapple lilies and whatever else overwintered in a pot are hopefully resprouting, and the bags of cannas and dahlias have been thrown open and watered as they await planting. My driveway is the definition of a ‘pot ghetto’ and I cringe every time I see Monty pull out a perfectly stored dahlia clump and pot it up in his greenhouse and then contrast that with my trashbags on the concrete. Hmmm.
I could really use some more unsuspecting garden pals who would believe me when I say they need a crate full of dahlias and cannas. I thought better safe than sorry when I dug them, but now I’m wondering how safe I thought I needed to be. Surely there’s plenty of room for them, right?
Only a fool would complain about a lack of planting space and then join a plant society devoted to trees, even if those trees are magnolias and magnolias are super awesome and wait, there’s a seed exchange and I can order bunches of seed? Sadly even I can’t justify more than a year or two of magnolia seed starting…
Seriously though, if we could justify building a ridiculous addition onto our already reasonable home, why can’t I also have a few more magnolias than I need? Maybe shade gardening isn’t all that bad.
We will see of course. This garden has a 50/50 chance of going completely off the rails at any moment, and I still can’t believe there’s no garden police pulling me over for too many new bulbs or unplanted seedlings. Hmm. I hadn’t even thought of those. Oh well. At least it’s not a garage full of assault rifles, I guess I could have have exercised my American freedoms in that direction just as easily, so too many plants crammed in too few spots is still not the worst thing.
Have a great week! I’m off tomorrow to volunteer at the American Rock Garden Society’s annual general meeting in Ithaca NY. Someone thought it would be a good idea to have me help out at the plant sale and I’m sure they’re right, but personally I think it’s a terrible idea. They might as well of put me in charge of ice cream scooping or m&m counting, or had me test to see if the Nutella is fresh. Whatever. I’ll do my best and make sure my wallet is stuffed full and the back of the car is empty. Any receipts will hopefully blow out the window on the way home and if someone asks they were all leftovers. Wish me luck 😉