Garden Days

Spring snuck up on me this year. Actually, it sneaks up on me every year. The past couple of springs I missed prime planting time by over a month. My new garden wasn’t laid out until late last year and I was (quietly) very grumpy with the guy who put it in because it was already too hot to plant new perennials. This year, I started way too early. Easter Sunday I put in Rudebekia roots, and Dahlia and Caladium bulbs. Yes, Easter Sunday. A month of 40 degree nights ago. Is it any surprise that not a single one of those bulbs has even come close to blooming?
How unlike me to be too early. I was born almost two weeks late, and I suspect my corpse will be late for its own funeral. Everyone will have a good laugh because it will be so appropriate. People at funerals sometimes need a good laugh, don’t you think?  But I digress….

Here’s a fabulous yellow azalea I picked up at a local nursery. The yellow petals are already dropping off to make room for bright green leaves. Last year I planted an Oak Leaf Hydrangea in the same spot, but it drowned in the wetclay soil. This time I worked the ground so that everything is very loose and drains easily.

I took this pic of the tulips last night while the dogs were out for their final constitutional. I’ve never had tulips before. So glad I went with one color. (How strange it is to see flowers blooming at night. I’ve always been fascinated by flowers that only ever bloom at night.)

Here’s helpful Scout. You’ll note that he’s artfully surrounded by sticks. No, I didn’t put them there. While I garden or sit on the porch to read, Scout will go off to the woods and find a stick and bring it back to chew on for a while. Then he’ll wander off and find another one and bring IT back. That’s about 3 hours of work there in the picture. Silly dog.

Back when I had a myspace blog (still there, much neglected), I posted lots of photos of the area where we live. It’s terribly picturesque for an area often referred to as Devil’s Kitchen. Hrothgar likes to accompany me on warm weather walks while Scout stays home.

This is a mock orange tree. I don’t know the real name for it. All I know is that it’s short and sprawling and kind of junky and smells like Flower Heaven. (Think of a frowsy, old Southern Aunt) They’re all over our neighborhood. Most are all leafed out, now. But a few still look like this:

And this is one of the creepiest buildings in Southern Illinois. Is it a shelter? A bus stop? A guard house? A couple of times a year, it changes inside. Somewhere we have a photo of it with a cardboard Jesus peeking out. Another time there was a fabric alien with enormous black eyes hanging just inside the door. I’m always kind of afraid to look when I walk or drive by, lest I see something truly frightening. What I like, though, is that it’s become a  not-so-private performance art piece.

Tomorrow I’ll be outside again–walking or gardening or reading or visiting. Probably gardening. It’s immersive and absorbing and hard to pull away from, almost like one’s first reading of an excellent book. Who can think of anything else when the weather is warm and one is blessed with yards and yards and yards of wonderful, blank dirt?  More garden photos to come. I can’t resist.

Right now there’s a barred owl outside my window, calling and calling. Time to see what he wants.

Be safe, be well! Laura

One thought on “Garden Days”

  1. Hey beautiful,

    Love the pictures! Tulips are especially wonderful. I have no propensity for gardening, but I do love cut flowers.

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