On Gardening


In colder weather. So glad those days are gone.

Gardening is something I wish I liked but I do not. Not much, anyway. No sooner do I pull all those damn weeds out, then new ones come up.

low back pain
wearing the wrong clothes and showing my backside while leaning over the same flower bed for the third hour

My favorite form of gardening is laying down sheets of weed blocker and covering it with mulch. Neat and tidy, and I don’t have to deal with it again for a while.

In spite of that, I just put gladiolus bulbs in the ground (thanks Steph!) and three little plants from Southern States. My neighbor (hi James!) got them for me last weekend when I was sort of staring at this patch in the corner of the yard. So I put those in the ground, too. And then went back to Southern States today with my little plastic yard-markers and asked for three more of each of those same plants my neighbor got me.

The saleslady asked if I wanted anything else- annuals, periannuals, ground cover?- and I gave her the old “bite my lip, shrug, and look inept” look. She helped me load my little pallet o’ plants in the front of the jeep while I loaded the kids in the backseat.

*Here’s something to know: you can get major mom points for gardening with your kids in Charlottesville! A woman at Southern States practically awarded my two oldest college scholarships for coming along and “helping” me. (To which I say: ha. They played tag in the nursery and didn’t come when I told them it was time to go.) Various passers-by gave us the “isn’t that sweet?” smile when walking by today, as the baby wielded his own little hand spade and the Monkey wore orange gardening gloves. Chicken showed our neighbor her five worms, which is simultaneously gross and endearing. We’re the picture of urban gardening bliss.*

I hope my plants don’t die. My butterfly bush in the backyard appears dry and fit for kindling, but I am dutifully mulching and hoping it shocks me and comes back for another round this summer.

I have one more strip of yard that I want to magically become colorful with flowers, and also weed-free. Which brings me back to the weedblocker/mulch idea. I pretty much want to put planters down on top of a bed of mulch. Weed-blocker means less time hunched over a flower bed this summer, and containers seem about as simple as it can get. However, I looked at the pinterest and the google and was unable to find any gardens that show this level of laziness.

Planters of flowers, on top of a perfectly good bed of mulch: Is this a thing, or does it just look like I haven’t gotten around to planting things in the ground yet? If it is in any way acceptable, I’m doing it.


8 thoughts on “On Gardening

  1. freeze/frost warning coming very soon so cover them up if you need to!!! we ended up hiring a landscape architect to tell us what to plant and where and and and.

    • yes! someone else told me this yesterday, too. i’ve never covered plants up before. i feel like i’m really doing this garden thing.

  2. You’re so funny and I can SO relate. I think your brother still wants to kill me for investing in a fence around my “garden” that lasted for one season. Yikes. One day, I just know I’ll get back around to it. If you find that your desire to garden with less trouble pans out, please let me in on the secrets. 🙂

    • well R did a raised bed garden when we lived across the street, and he always had a ton of tomatoes and basil and stuff and minimal weed-pulling. we, of course, do not have any deer population to worry about. so i think your fence was a great idea. one day you can get back to it!

  3. My brother-in-law sunk large pots into the ground and then placed plants in smaller containers into the sunken ones. When they died, he bought new ones to replace the old. So … you could dig a few holes, set pots into the ground so the tops are flush with the ground, cover the ground with black plastic but cut holes out around the inset containers, place slightly smaller potted plants in there, and then cover the plastic and the tops of the potted plants with mulch so no one can tell you’re cheating. You’ll need to be watering consistently, since your plants can’t access the water in the ground, and you’ll be a bit limited in which plants you can grow in containers. (I hope I’ve described it well enough for you to visualize.)

    • this might be my answer… i haven’t take any steps forward yet because of the frost at night, but maybe this could be my new method? thanks!

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