Finding Garden Forgiveness

Gidget in Sea of Leaves
Gidget in a Sea of Leaves

After a couple really blustery cold days, we stepped outside to a still, damp, balmy morning; it must have been 60 degrees.  In all but the worst weather Gidget, our German Shepherd Dog, and I take an early pass around the garden.  We’ve missed a few days lately, but today we made the full circuit.  On this morning walk I take note of blooms, tasks that need doing, scout for problems and so on.  With her hungry nose, Gidget takes note of squirrels, burrowing animal tunnels, and a thousand other things I’ll never know.

Today I noticed how much I haven’t done.  Over the years I’ve learned to enjoy more and stress less about the garden.  But really, I was looking at some serious neglect.  Leaves still unraked everywhere, the fish pond also full of leaves, Hostas looking like mush, and Heath, starting to bloom, also full of leaves … ugh.

The topper is the Viburnum Hedge.  Burkwood Viburnum is a terrific shrub (click here to see the Plant View).  April flowers purfume the garden, twiggy branches provide habitat for birds, and the fall show is a wonder of garnet leaves.  Being a spring bloomer, its bud set is on old wood.  Correct pruning is just after flowering.  I’ve never gotten this pruning task done on time; the latest having been October.  And still I got a hedge full of flowers the following spring.

Orchard Ladder
Orchard Ladder

But not this year.  The orchard ladder is standing in the Courtyard as if I’m actually going to get to this.  This morning I stared at the ladder and then at the hedge and had to admit to myself that I just didn’t want to do the job.  I could give myself a dozen good reasons why, but what I did instead is forgive myself for not getting to it.  After all, it’s a hedge.  It will need pruning again next year and no doubt next year I’ll get after it in better time.  I think I’ll put the ladder away and have a cup of tea.

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