Visited daughter Grace in Boston last week and went apple-picking. Whenever I go to a more temperate climate, I always wonder why I even bother gardening. The soil, the rainfall, the temperate growing season all make me depressed about my efforts in this heat-blasted rockpile we call home. We picked Empires and Courtlands on a gorgeous day.
Rock wall at Arnold Arboretum, Boston
This rock spews out of the ground everywhere in Massachusetts; it's a gray-green granite. Tumbling over the wall is a vining hydrangea. The Arboretum has wonderful zones of birches, beeches, plane trees, oaks, and every other specimen tree. The fall color was just beginning.
I can never get over these trees. They are huge for one thing, and their Cousin Itt drooping growth pattern is so unusual. The copper beeches are impossible to photograph; their scale is so off the charts.
Have been so taken with headline news, have no energy to garden. Posted on daughter Rachel's blog. It's way off-topic, so don't read if you are avoiding any exposure to sentient thought, or reality, or the uncertain future.
Today robins arrived en masse. They act like a bunch of fat-cat conventioneers that all got off the tour bus at Aurora to chill at the lobby bar birdbath. It's fun to see them swaggering around in their red vests. They are remarkably tame and pay no attention to me while I'm puttering in their midst.
In the front yard, a red menace. I got caught by a stealth bomber, an unseen nest of fire ants. By the time I looked down to notice the first bite, my foot was covered with swarming ants. Anyone who lives in Fire Ant Country will know the horror. Even having a hose in hand was no help as they cannot be washed off; they cling like glue. My foot is covered in bites; my foot and leg on fire with pain and itching. Next will be the blistering and scarring. I forgot to include this misery in my previous post on garden hazards.
Daniel, who has been trimming my trees for 25 years, came by this week to clear out dead limbs from a red oak. Poor guy looked like he'd been in a bar fight; his eye was completely swollen shut and the size of a golf ball--he'd been stung by a bee while up in a tree, with a chainsaw in hand! Let's see...my choices are: death by falling, electrocution, or stinging insect bombardment.
Pam's post at Digging about getting her agave out without bloodshed is all the more a miracle. Be careful out there gardeners!
After 10 years gardening on solid rock in Rollingwood, I moved into a 40's cottage in the North Loop area spring 2007. The little postage stamp yard is black clay and no one had ever dug a single flower bed. After visiting Key West a few years ago, I came back inspired by the little frame cottages, white painted railings, and rustling palm leaves. So the plan is: desert tropical cottage garden.