One flat of mom’s seed starts lasted about an hour before being mistaken for a buffet by the big dog. I’d moved all the plants from the car to a shady spot on the deck, watered them, and left them to rest after the trauma of interstate travel. I returned to find one box missing most of its peat pots, soil, and sprouts. Both dogs sensed my, um, pique, and assumed guilty looks. Both snouts were strangely clean, so it wasn’t until today, when the big dog heaved up three separate wide lakes of silty black vomit that I had my culprit.
I would say her discomfort was only fair, but I was the one who had to clean it up, so she still owes me.
I still have the many flower transplants–decorative plants I didn’t drive up intending to get, but, as they say, woman cannot live by chard alone–and some young tomatoes, strawberries, and a few herbs that may survive the dog-blitz. For the rest, well, I’m grateful mom sent me home with seed packets, too. I potted up the few specimens that were left with a protective soil clump around their fragile roots, and gave the bare-rooted and broken-stemmed their last rites before tossing them on the compost pile.
The circle of life and a (wannabe) gardener’s impatience are constantly jockeying for some middle ground.
Today, I put most of the flowers in the ground and weeded the sunny dirt patch that will soon be a strawberry lasagna bed. The heavy clay soil around my house made me seriously envy the rich, crumbly, black stuff under my mom’s yard, but I’ve seen worse. I live here; this is my home, and so I have the natural instinct to improve it. However, I’m only a renter, so I’m not breaking my back–or my wallet–to make it happen. With a couple of lasagna beds, I can have my fresh fruits and veggies and leave the land a little better than I found it, all with a relatively miniscule input of time, effort, and funds. I call that a win-win.
I’m trying to refrain from patting myself on the back oh, what the heck… I’m patting myself on the back for finally getting a little garden of my very own, and going about it in a manageable fashion. If you know me, you might have guessed that the last bit is probably the bigger accomplishment. I didn’t try to get everything planted, lush, and magazine-ready in one weekend, and that’s important. Bite off what you can chew, and don’t turn something fun into another chore. Don’t most of us have enough of those already?
The rest of the plants will keep until tomorrow after work, or my next day off… or they won’t. I’m learning to roll with the punches, bit by bit.
I think I’d want a drink after coming through a dog mauling, but alcohol is not on the list of recommended soil amendments for nascent vegetable gardens, so I guess the plants are outta luck. The vomit cleaner, now…