This view of the zinnias draws me in. I love all the color and the defiance of our ever lowering temperatures.
The mums were such a good idea! They add pops of color in an ever chilling and browning garden. But perhaps my favorite color belongs to the Limelight and Tardiva hydrangeas. Timing is critical here, but for several weeks, I get to pick as many “heads” of blooms as I can. Those blooms have started turning lovely shades of pink, and the color stays forever if you cut and bring them indoors. I’m running out of vases because I now have time to pick. And pick. And pick. It’s one of the perks of retirement.
But, the mums and the zinnias deserve attention, too, though they will not last much longer. I hate cold weather. The older I get, the more I hate it. Today our high was 47 degrees and the wind cut through my sweater and light jacket. I donned my bright red winter jacket to walk the dog.
Usually my head is consumed by class preparations that include reading and responding to students’ conversations about their readings, and planning, planning, planning. September has always been about teaching and barely about gardening. But, I’m retired. And, I’ve decided that I need to see more things blooming in September. So, I went out and bought a bunch of hardy mums and a few asters. Take that, September.
Bridget and I needed a photo for our West Michigan Therapy Dog name badge, and since we were sitting in the entrance garden, I thought I’d include us in the “what’s bloomin'” post.
Thank you, May Dreams Garden, for hosting Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. It’s nice to feel welcomed back into my own gardens. And it’s nice to hop on over to the GBBD website to get inspired. There are gorgeous gardens to wander through at the click of a mouse.
It’s easy for me to get distracted and I often postpone tasks that should have been done. Like blogging about the garden on days other than Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. I took some pictures a couple weeks ago and have been trying to think of ways to write about the garden other than to document what is blooming each month. But here I am on GBBD and pushing against the clock and prepping for a class tomorrow. Plus I have to walk the dog and ignore the clean sheets that are piled on a chair in the living room and get my annuity stuff together. I’m retiring. Things have to happen.
So, first, the love.
This is what is blooming in my garden today.
Last summer I hardly set foot in the garden. My trusty gardener did all the work. Richard has been working in my garden for several years and I love what he does. And the garden loves him back. But last summer the garden belonged more to Richard than me. Yeah, I was dealing with surgery and chemo and radiation. And, I taught two classes, but much of that work took place online. It took me weeks and weeks to recover from surgery. And, about six weeks after surgery I started chemo which knocked me flat. So, no gardening for me.
This year I get into the garden almost every day and do a little weeding, yank out the ever aggressive dutchman’s pipe, deadhead the day lilies. The garden is mine, though, Richard still does his magic. I don’t know what I would do without dear Richard. He rearranges the hostas, curses at the dutchman’s pipe, and keeps a keen eye out for other forms of garden trouble, like the chipmunk that has made a home under some bricks in the Secret Garden.
So, what is this love/hate thing?
I love them. I dream 11 months out of the year about my day lilies. I’m quite fond of the pink ones, especially the dark pink lilies. I know. I said that already.
But the minute they begin to bloom, they begin to fade. The leaves closest to the ground dry out and turn brown. And the flowers bloom for just one day. Everyday I pluck the previous day’s withered flowers and drop them on the bark that keeps moisture in the soil. I’ve tried to plant lilies that are early bloomers, and others that bloom later, but the hate murmurs softly that each day will bring a little bit of death. I know, day lilies don’t die when they give up their spent blooms, but it’s sad to see the scapes that have no more buds on them.
I love hostas, too, and I don’t feel sad at all when their flowers fade. Perhaps I’m being a titch too dramatic.