Sunday, April 26, 2009

Ready, Set, Composted Cow Manure!

Sure I love that time of the year when the daffodils come up and bloom, when the first green leaves are unfurling from tree branches, and the tiny snow drops nod their heads to some secret garden agreement. I love it when the leaves turn color in the fall and there air is crisp one minute and redolent with wood smoke the next.

But nothing beats this time of year -- that point when spring is just starting to hit summer. In my yard, the echinacea is setting out leaves and the oniony allium heads have formed on their sturdy stalks, and about five other plants that I set out last year (and now have completely forgotten the names of) are crowding out the weeds. Foxglove has reseeded in strange corners of the garden and sedum volunteers have sprung up exactly where I would have put them myself -- and now don't have to. And beyond all these garden discoveries is the even better part -- the plotting and scheming for another upcoming garden.

The strategizing starts in the early morning: I head out back with my coffee, barely awake, and stare at the back garden. I'm plotting out that new bed over there in my head. And I stare, and stare some more. My husband used to think I was developing some kind of catatonia, until I explained my garden meditation thing to him. It might look like I am doing nothing, but actually I'm considering which of those rose bushes to transplant and nixing growing peppers in the herb garden this year. After a few days of this, I'll make lists of the stuff I need to pick up at the nursery, so on the weekend I can spend HOURS at the nursery looking at plants and changing my mind. Even if I only weed this year and plant a few basil seedlings in pots, I will still have enjoyed hours of imaginary tactical garden maneuvers and garden center window-shopping. For me, gardening is 75% mental calculations and 25% actually manual labor.

Some people had imaginary friends, I have an imaginary forsythia hedge...that runs along picturesque brook...beside the bank of lupines....

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