We have had several mild, mostly sunny spring days in succession!
J. pronounced that the ground had dried enough to 'turn'--as tilling the garden is termed in
our part of Kentucky.
Pebbles the Horse being securely pastured inside her double fence and placidly munching grass, we could finally concentrate on other needs.
[Thank you for all the comments regarding the horse tales!]
I tackled the strip that borders the front porch.
It was clogged with purple lamium--an invasive wildling that is prevalent here.
Locals call it 'hen-bit'.
This plant can blossom and flourish throughout the winter months, taking over, as in this case, a strip of garden weeded clean in autumn.
Driving around the county, we see great swaths of the red-purple blossoms in fields that have not yet been cultivated. The slender juicy stems of the weed pull up easily--the fine mat of roots clings to the soil and has to be dug out with a trowel.
I worked steadily, clearing the area around the daylilies planted last year.
When we came here, grass and weeds crowded up to the foundation of the porch with a sad and tattered clump of sedum flanking each side of the steps. I rooted out the sedum last spring, along with a variagated grassy plant whose name I forget.
I was given a gift card for my birthday and spent some of it on daylily roots and two peonies.
The daylily roots have been added to the cleared strip--with much assistance from the boy cats.
I'm pleased to see that the lilies planted last year have fattened into sturdy clumps.
I raked up dried leaves--the wind whisked them back.
The gaunt old pear tree is coming into bloom.
Two of the three seasons we've lived here have seen the ancient tree producing a heavy crop of pears.
Mr. Rogers who is nearing the century mark, tells us that this tree was of bearing size when he moved to the neighborhood as a young boy.
Pear blossoms on the lower branches of the old tree.
The goat willow tree at the bottom of the front yard is in that lovely stage of transition from pussywillows to golden catkins. The whole tree has a soft glow about it even when the sun hides behind a cloud.
I worked until dusk, firmly ignoring the protests of my aging knees.
The small strip beyond the clothesline presented some challenges.
Although I removed sod when I started that bed last spring, there were still matted roots that made weeding difficult. I dug out more of the omnipresent lamium, pried out clumps of other perennial weeds whose names I haven't researched.
I tossed clods of earth at the boy cats who were determined to roll on frail emerging peonies and dig madly around the clumps of pinks.
As the ache in my back grew I questioned my own sanity in trying to maintain so many plantings.
I should have had the sense to put down landscape fabric before setting in my flowers!
I've thought that the mulch we used in the upper perennial strip along the drive hasn't been very effective in keeping down weeds.
After grubbing in the strip by the clothesline where no mulch was used, I can appreciate that the mulch has kept the soil more mellow and easier to work in the other planting.
I didn't garden today.
I cooked a substantial mid-morning meal, tidied the kitchen, made several dozen molasses/spice cookies.
I wrote letters, responded to phone calls, applied lotion to my stiff and roughened hands.
This evening I wandered the dooryard, collected cats, visited Pebbles the Horse, marveled at the scent of pear blossom and the sound of the frog peeper's chorus ringing from the creek across the road.
I watered the daylily roots planted yesterday, tucked some strands of clematis around the wires of the trellis, noting the fat flower buds.
A seed catalog is open on the table, and visions of peonies and roses dance in my head.