Introducing the Guilty Gardener – Better Late Than Never!
It is the most glorious of days! January and it’s 60 degrees today here in the Pacific NW zone 8b garden where I reside. Usually January days are grey, cold, and rainy here, and I spend my days wishing for sun and garden season.
This time of year, I normally prowl the garden centers and nurseries, desperate for signs that spring will eventually arrive, finding myself saddened at the lack of green to peruse, slightly annoyed at the winter offerings of overly bright common annuals such as primroses. I do enjoy the cyclamen and the hellebores, actually one of my favorite plants. I just adopted a new variety ‘Anna’s Red’ and introduced her to my front bed.
Who is this gardener ranting about sun and primroses? I garden in the Seattle area, a bit outside of the city. I have the joy and the huge task of a brand new construction yard, so both excited about the ability to start a yard from the very beginning, and the terrorized of digging all those planting holes in the horrid clay soil the builders are sure to have left behind.
My parents introduced me to gardening as a child. We had a wonderful vegetable garden for my early years, and I have fond memories of eating fresh picked green beans. I began gardening on my own as an adult when I purchased my first home, a charming bungalow with a plain back yard. I planted trees, roses, and flowers, until it became a wonderful little oasis from the outside world. It was hard to leave when we sold that first home, but at each home owned over the years, I began again with a new garden, knowing I would leave it behind again, viewing it as a gift to the new owners. Who knows if they kept my creations as I left them, but I like to think they did.
The Guilty Gardener part, the “Better Late Than Never?” You’ll learn that I’m always playing catch up, planting bulbs in December, forgetting about when the best time is to prune my hydrangeas, losing a few precious babies I forget to protect before a hard frost. I always feel guilty…and then I continue on, doing my best to learn from each mistake, enjoying the successes when they come, and loving every single bit of gardening through the year. Well, except for the slugs. I could do without the slugs.
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