A Garden in Grand Rapids, Michigan

I spent a lovely afternoon with two other gardeners who also happen to be cat lovers.  Amy rents an apartment in one of those beautiful old Heritage Hill homes.  But that hasn’t kept her from gardening.  She has transformed a lovely slope behind her apartment, using stones to make little “vignettes.”  She has herbs mixed in with shrubs and perennials.  It’s quite sweet.

Steph’s garden is just getting established, but I can already tell her art background is going to work magic on the back yard space that is gradually coming to gether.  I’m amazed that she could get her pansies, a deep almost black color, to come back again this year.  They look alarmingly healthy.  I’ve never been able to get pansies to survive a winter.  Stef also has a lovely dappled willow that she and Amy sharply pruned a few months ago, and it is now lush and vibrant.

And she has valerian, an herb that smells so sweet.  I must get some.  It’s invasive, so I will need to put it in a pot.

My plan was to work in the garden this evening, but it’s buggy out there.

Speaking of bugs, the Japanese beetles have arrived.  I found two on my English roses.  I put some insecticidal soap on them, but I doubt that will take care of the little creatuers.  Tomorrow I may resort to chemical warfare.  It’s too bad because they really are quite attractive–for a bug.  But beauty ain’t everything, especially when there are six legs and a hug appetite involved.

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