Friday, March 20, 2009

3rd week of March

Don't blink! Lilacs unfurling. A clutch of miniature daffies from the bulbs G planted last fall. The Echinacea I thought I'd killed leafing out. The pot of veteran screaming purple-pink and yellow primroses is a solid dome of blossoms. One of the two Sale Bin rose bushes G stuck in the ground tentatively sending up a new sprig. The irrepressible Elms -- each branch coated with fluttery chartreuse sequins -- a thousand seeds sewn to every single bony, lonely, winter-withered branch. G moved the artichoke. I laughed. By now it has a lot of stamps on its steamer-trunk... this is the third place she has put it in as many years: our well-traveled spiny vegetable friend. She nestled it against the far wall in the back. The butterfly bush, which in the course of three months last summer exploded from a tiny spindly gallon-size to a 3-gallon-bushel basket, moved out of the bed with the small things, up the hill a few paces, where it can stretch and sprawl wildly and with our full approval, nay appreciation. And the lavender that a friend gave me four years ago--without any niceties whatsoever--yanked out from under a huge plant in her yard, a pitiful naked bit of root and stem. I planted it in my back yard, where it got plenty of water and some decent soil. When exactly, did it grow to be so very handsome? As big as an expensive bouquet. G dug it up to bring with us as I moved to her house. So for several days it has been sitting on the stoop at her house, plopped awkwardly into a pot. I was worried we would dally and futze and kill it, good intentions be damned. Now if it dies, something more complicated than distraction will be the culprit.

And she filled up the brown pool! grin. A load of compost from Soilutions and three trips to Lowe's garden center later, the raised bed we built is ready for seeds! I'm so happy and excited, I'm beside myself.

Gloria's yard is enormous by comparisons to the place I lived for four years downtown. I still believe I have been called to be She Who Speaks for Shrubs and Bushes. But I am daunted by the challenge to my feeble powers of attention presented by the size and complexity of her plot. "What is in my back yard" is an entirely new question!

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