Tuesday, May 10, 2011

It's a Lovely Day in May

I'd thought about titling this post "The Month of May!" after the song from Camelot - loved that musical, saw it when I was 16ish with Richard Burton. But I went back and read the lyrics. This is a post about planning and gardening, not about all the stuff in the song. Made me want to watch the movie, but not name a post after it.

It's May and finally nice enough to be outside. Actually too hot to be out for long, we found this morning. Projects for this week include planning my parent's 50th wedding anniversary and reworking the front garden, which requires ripping out most of my wild geraniums. I am finding the latter to be perfectly therapeutic after spending time doing the former.

I don't know why the flowers are called wild geraniums exactly. I paid for them at the local nursery and brought them home in pots. They have a lovely magenta colored flower and they bloom a lot. They had a name - Cranesbill Geraniums. But people kept admiring my wild geraniums. They have a name, I'd say! They are not wild! But then they ran amok, spreading across the walk up to the house and somehow winding up on the other side of the driveway. I've stopped defending them as "not wild" and am now going after them with a vengeance.

Also on the chopping block are the purple cone flowers. I thought I'd bought short ones. I did not. They are huge, practically a shrub, and are not lovely to look at. They are supposed to add "winter interest" to my garden. I don't know who'd find them interesting, excepting the folks that write up the descriptions in flower catalogs, which are meant to lure you into buying. So caveat emptor - "winter interest" translates to sharp prickly black lumps on the end of long stalks that catch on your clothes as you walk by. I guess that might be interesting to someone. I'm not that someone, and so my spade and I are going to dispatch them posthaste to the great recycling pile in the sky.

In the place of the soon to be gone flowers, I'm planning basil, tarragon, thyme, and rosemary. The list gets longer the hungrier I get. I start thinking of all the things you can cook with herbs, and off I go. I'd also like to plant some peppers and tomatoes, but will likely save those for pots in the back yard. I had cherry tomatoes in front a few years ago, some of which came back from seed the next year, but two years was their limit.

I also need to look up how to prune my grape vines. There's apparently a trick to it, given the type of grapes I have, which I'll also have to look up. I kept the tags, but they are in the "kept tags" pile, and I'm not sure where that pile got cleaned away to. Whatever they are, they can't stay as they are.

This year, I'm planning to actually eat some of the grapes, rather than let the birds get to them before I do. Same applies for the raspberries. The seem to be spreading, which means my family may get a couple. I tend to go out in the morning with the dog, pick some berries while I'm waiting for her, eat them on the way in to the house, and then not bother to tell my family how good they were. I just put on my martyr face and go take out the dog...again. No, no, I say, I'll do it...ha!

So this lovely day in May is for planning: an anniversary, a garden, a pot of sweet tea, and a vacation or two. There's lots more going on all around me, in my church, my family and the extended world. But for today, I'm going enjoy to luxury of going to ground (literally) and doing some thinking. The rest of my life goes so much better when I do that now and again.

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