Archive for the ‘Gardening’ Category

Garden Report (for Jane)

April 26th, 2011

The garlic I planted a week ago in the half barrels in my back yard has yet to make its reappearance above ground.  The soil in one of the containers has developed some mysterious cratering, as if someone had been digging there.  I suspect squirrels.

The hostas too are biding their time.

The lilacs are fully budded, and their buds are on the verge of bursting open.  Likewise the rhododendron by the compost heap.  The other rhododendron, next to the wall in the angle formed by the bathroom addition to the master bedroom, looks pretty scruffy.  Its companion died last year, from causes unknown.  Perhaps it’s mourning.

Behind my house, the peculiar purple spears of the peonies have been erupting skywards for about a week now.  They’re about four to six inches tall already, and the points of some of them are beginning to open, like spearheads turning into feathers.

There’s a row of cedar trees along the back boundary of my yard.  A couple of years ago I transplanted some tiger lilies under them.  They’ve yet to bloom, but are showing a vigor this year which gives me some hope.  In fact, the lilies and tulips all around the yard are shooting forth in the most gratifying way.  There’s a tired old red tulip in one corner that some years produces nothing in the way of a flower, just one or two luxuriant, oddly shaped leaves, but this year it looks like it has been taking some tulipy equivalent of viagra.

I meant to check the rhubarb, but it slipped my mind.  Talk about a plant with a surfeit of vitality!  Last year I purposely harvested what felt like an excessive amount, to see if that would slow it down.  A few years ago I invited some friends who said they wanted rhubarb to come and dig up as much as they might want.  They got what looked like about 80% of it.  It came back the next year as if nothing had happened.

The daffodils by the stump in the front yard need thinning.  The daisies that also grow around the stump aren’t yet much in evidence.  The stump itself is almost completely rotted away.  When it was fresh it was just a stump.  Now it has that strange eroded beauty, like Bryce Canyon on a small scale or the face of a very old person on her deathbed.

In the basement, under the grow lights, the leeks I started from seed a month and a half ago are ready to go in the ground, if the ground were ready to receive them, which it is not.  The brussels sprouts also are eager to get down to it.  On the other hand, the bell peppers and jalapenos are delinquent.  I think my basement is just a touch too cool for them, and it delayed their germination.  They’re coming along fine, now, but they got a late start.

And, of course, the unnamed and (by me) unnameable weeds are poking up everywhere!  Well, except in the basement.