Rain and Lilacs


Lilacs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Is it too late to be bothered fixing up flower beds for this year?  (Please say yes.) The tiger lilies and the dogwood thrive despite my neglect but some other plants are looking dejected and thirsty and mostly dead.  In a previous life I must have had gardeners.  My ambition gets stuck in neutral and all I want to do is big fat nothing when I get home from work and just looking at the yard makes me tired.

But it’s a mercifully short work day today and I’m hoping to get more accomplished than sleeping through the entire afternoon, tempting as that might sound.

The rain has rained itself out for now, the lilacs next door are blooming and the breeze is blowing their delightful scent through my window.  Now there’s something you can’t buy in a spray bottle.

This song has been rolling around in my head this morning and I can’t seem to get rid of it.  Don’t you kind of hate it when that happens?  There’s no real cure, but sharing seems to ease the pain.

So there you go – it’s all yours now. Complete with lyrics so you can sing along.  You’re welcome.

From This Moment

Well there’s a Shania Twain moaning whiner of a song that makes me shudder.  And has nothing whatsoever to do with this post, which is about this moment in time.  Which is why it will be categorized in the “Just Now” file.  Orphan Which clauses undo me.

But back to the moment.  The flower bed in front of our house has seven (count ’em – SEVEN) brand new BUSHES planted in a lovely row across the west three-quarters of our house.  Two of them are gooseberry I think.  One of them is already flowering, and the others I think are supposed to flower eventually, but if they don’t and decide to simply remain GREEN that will be completely acceptably pleasantly satisfactory for this budding shrub grower.  I just picked up random partial sun/shade growers from the perennial shrub and tree area, not even considering the fact that the stupid front lawn tree is gone until I got home.  There went a large part of the shade.  There is still the crazy overhang of the roof though, and the fact that the flower bed faces NORTH and gets only the morning sun.  When there actually IS morning sun.  GAWD this capitalization of random words needs to STOP.  I remember a couple of the little plastic information sticks said to expect growth to no more than five feet (although I don’t know if I looked for that on all of them, come to think of it) so hopefully nothing gets tall enough to block the view from the bedroom windows or knock off the roof overhang.  No worries, I’m very good at trimming.  Mostly because I’m never sure something is actually a weed until it gets big enough to be recognizable from the street and somebody tells me.

There are also three partially grown tomato plants in the back bed with brand new bright yellow cages (because either I threw out all the old broken metal ones or W did or he hid them somewhere obscure because I can’t find them) and one of them already has tiny little green tomatoes on it.  The plant of course, not the cage.  Although even if there are never any more tomatoes of any significance the cages are pretty awesome.  Adding a splash of brilliant color to the back yard.  They should match the yellow flowers on the bush that’s already flourishing back there.  What a relief when it finally turned green again for another season.  So this is how I garden.  Purchasing at exorbitant prices things that are already very strongly established and unlikely to croak while resigning themselves to my care.   The plants I love the most are the ones that adapt to me, being mature and hardy enough to continue to live in spite of whatever strange things I choose to do to them.  Ignoring them completely being very high on the list of possibilities.

I no sooner had my grand landscaping adventure completed when suddenly a gigantic Salisbury truck and trailer pulled up beside the next door neighbours front lawn and proceeded to rip up all their grass.  Damn.  Keeping up with the Joneses.  Impossible.  I’ve been watching the progress (or lack thereof) (they seem to have a lot of guys hanging around taking breaks) and there’s no sod down yet because they’re putting in some kind of bordered rock bed all around the house and now it looks like some kind of artistic horticultural rock infested thingey which is going to make my tree stump directly across from it look rather unimpressive in comparison. Sigh.  I can’t begin to imagine what all that must be costing them.   And how sad it’s going to make our front yard look when they’re done.

My sister Ann is coming for a visit, thus my sudden gardening sense of urgency.  Normally I would not think of doing any of this until well into the summer when it’s really too late to bother.  But her yard could be featured in a horticultural magazine, as could my brothers, and he and my sister-in-law are going to be here too, at least overnight, although I can’t count on the visit being entirely in the dark.  So I had to do something to save myself from being the subject of their pity and eye rolling and head shaking conversation about my rather serious botanic impairment for at least half their trip back home.  That could happen anyway, but on the bright side,  at least I will not have struck them dumb.  I hope.

Yesterday I bought a little wooden-like outdoor side table.  Not exactly a patio set, but it’s a pathetic start.  It’s made of all recyclable materials and absolutely  looks like natural wood but without the care required.  Big points from me for that.  Our Adirondack chairs are in a very sad state and probably no longer usable except maybe for firewood, so I was just going to bring out some canvas lawn chairs with the drink holder things in the arms (kudos to the brilliant inventor of those things) but I can find only two of them!  The rest must be at camp.  Honestly, for the garage being stuffed full of stuff it’s kind of amazing that there is nothing truly useful in there.

And speaking of firewood….which we weren’t really, but suddenly we are now because I just remembered something…..we no longer have a fire pit in the back yard because W. gave away the cement blocks and now there is just a little raised circle in the concrete filled with dirt and soot and possibly ants for all I know.  What the hell am I supposed to do with that?  Are there plants that thrive in soot?  It so sucks being agronomically challenged.  With a spouse like W. who thinks a pile of chopped wood is a perfectly acceptable back yard lawn decoration.

Ah well.  Better not get started on W. or we’ll be here all day.  He is down east again, probably for most of the summer, fishing his little brains out while I hold down the fort here in the burbs.  Trying to remember to water things.  And fertilize!  Crap!  I forgot to use those tomato spikes!  If I don’t do that RIGHT NOW I will no doubt discover the unopened package in the garage sometime after labor day.  Plus venturing outside will give me a chance to check out the progress next door.  And I have a little side table to put together and a soot filled hole to consider.  This is day four of my ‘time off from work’ which I refuse to call vacation or holiday, since it’s so far been rife with plant management related vexations.  Such a hard life I’m living.  Trying to stay focused on tomato spikes while I wrap up this fleeting moment in time.   Agriculture calls.  You probably do not want to hear my less than poetic answer.