Are you familiar with the old saying, "make hay while the sun shines?" In other words, do it (whatever it is) while you can. Around here, it's sometimes more practical to make hay before the sun shines. The heat of summer is upon us, but this year, the garden requests attention like never before. It doesn't demand, it just patiently beckons.
The cleanup/healing is coming along slowly but surely. I will have to get out there this morning and water whatever’s not wet. We have yet to find an irrigation guy/company who can keep up with our plantings. Our days begin to broil.
Last weekend, I walked outside, snapped a few photos, and allowed myself to be lulled into a romantic dream of a day in the garden. That day, the temps rose to the mid-90s. I was drenched in sweat the first hour. A yellow jacket bumped into my hand just before I slipped on a glove. Fire ants ventured into said glove, and a mosquito got caught in one of my long, buttoned sleeves.
Hardly romantic. I wanted to give up. I wanted to give in. But no! I had purchased a few hundred dollars of plants and intended to plant them.
And that’s what I did. First I had to prepare the spots. It wouldn’t have been easier to prepare and then shop. Not only is that NOT the way gardeners tend to think, weeds take over in a matter of minutes. I wanted plants to be ready and waiting. There were also still a few dead plants left from February’s freeze and a few that have simply struggled too much for too long. I pulled all of them.
The garden was looking half empty. In a way, it still does since many of the transplants are small. But I have confidence in my choice of plants. All but one are native to the area, which is pretty remarkable considering the number I brought home. The exception -- have you ever grown a cleome? I haven't. I looked it up while still at the nursery. It looked pretty, and it’s not invasive, so I decided to include it for variety. Once home, I sort of regretted the choice for a few moments. Native pentas have similar flowers and more colors. But it’s mine now and it’s planted. Supposedly, butterflies like it. I’d might as well give it a chance.
The sun is higher, the temps are rising, and I still have a few plants to plonk into the ground. I’m getting out there while it’s still in the 70s. Woohoo!
For years, my husband and I worked at creating a series of gardens on our four-acre lot in a rural, Texas subdivision west of Houston. I have to say, it was a fantastic experience. Now, I have a pocket garden on a golf course.