The hosta garden is cleaned up, the lilies-of-the-valley are about to bloom, and the hostas are unfurling. They behave like stretching athletes, opening themselves to the world and breathing in the fresh air. And then I have to go and ruin it by sprinkling slug poison and critter repellant! I tell the hostas it's for their own good, and I think they might believe me. I don't think they feel like themselves after the slugs have made them look like green eyelet.
Last year, critters bit the blooms off the red tulips, but so far, things aren't as bad. I'm wondering if it has anything to do with the presence of a pair of dogs next door. Gee. I sure hope that's the case! Might save me some cash in the critter repellant department. Lordy, but that stinky stuff is dear!
Jake says all of us have high hopes in January, but then reality sets in and the rest of the gardening season is a matter of knowing deep down we will never achieve the glorious garden we envisioned as snow, sleet and crud fell. He's right, of course. My garden journals are a testament to that theory's veracity. On the other hand, gardening is really a lot like people who remarry...a triumph of hope over reason.
BGF sent me a great article that appeared in the Chicago Tribune about the gardening experiment of a group of students at our alma mater. As I read it, I thought back to when we were there. I wonder if either of us would have volunteered to live in the house and tend that garden, cook communally and sell the extra produce. BGF is the king of tomato growers - the only one I can think of who might top him would be my principal from Bedford Co. He always took a week of vacation near the end of summer so that he could can bushels of tomatoes. BGF is more prone to popping home for lunch and wolfing down tomato sandwiches!
I've tried tomato growing, but fall way short of the mark. In the past couple of years, deer have bit the tops off my tomato plants, and what they didn't destroy, the groundhogs did.
I noticed Fatso up on the hill above the neighbor's. The dogs weren't out, but Fatso was wary, so I have to believe those two barking fools have to be having a positive effect. Haven't seen deer, either, and no hoofprints in the soft earth. I think any time you can break up their pattern, you stand a chance of defeating them. They like routine. Usually.
And, add in the neighborhood cat who wanders through our yard. Oh, my, but how we cackle when our cats see him! The visitor is scared of us, which is odd because cats seem to know we're happy to see them. However, my reputation as a feline drug dealer is intact since I know that cat is lurking around certain parts of the yard in anticipation of the appearance of the kitty weed. I need to plant some more of it, though, because one reliable stand of it got mowed once too often, and I know the cat has been lounging around that area sending me telepathic hints. My own cats are heads, so the supply has to be increased in order to insure everyone has a chance to get high.
So it goes in Sprawl Land. The weeds are in abundance, the chores never end and the fairies dance in the garden when we aren't around. There is plenty to celebrate, I think.