Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Hello Old Friends

Jacob's Ladder brightly blooming in a thicket of weeds.
This summer's delightful task is to reclaim The Long Neglected Garden ~ my term of endearment for the garden I planted 12 years ago.

And, subsequently abandoned when I turned the house into a rental property.

Sassy little Columbine says: Hell no! We won't go! (Refusing to accept defeat from the weeds.)
The garden is, of course, a disastrous bed of weeds. 

So thick and gnarly that it was just overwhelming in the beginning. I roto-tilled a lot of it.

But, before I did that, I hand dug around all of the green shoots that I recognized as ''Friends" (aka welcome perennials) vs. "Enemies" (aka nasty ass weeds.)

Heirloom Bearded Iris
I'm kinda thinking that's one of the greatest gifts of becoming a savvy gardener. When we learn to recognize our old friends, long before they flower.

One glance at the leaf structure and I can tell... Hey! You're not a weed! You're a Columbine! Or, Jacob's Ladder... Or, Centaurea... All of whom have survived, for 12 long years, without one ounce of TLC from me.

Montana (Centaurea)
Visited Home Depot yesterday. Their nursery now contains about 90% annuals vs. perennials. So, naturally, I couldn't find a single thing to buy. (I only plant perennials because I enjoy watching them re-bloom every year.)

I suppose they did that because our weather has been freakishly hot, then cold, with a few hellacious hail storms thrown in for good measure. And, HD doesn't offer a money back guarantee on annuals. As they do with perennials. At least in my town.

Dame's Rocket: popular with Swallowtail Butterflies

What a shame! This garden is a total testament to the tenacity of perennials! Plant 'em once. Love 'em forever.

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Rilly said...

My niece could use your knowledge about now....check out my latest blog. I could help with the things that were blooming but beyond that I was stumped with the other 90%. She's all about growing her own food and she's discovering a wealth of berries, fruit and nut trees, etc. And I am so jealous of the creek she has running thru the 14 acres. I'm not jealous of the job you must have ahead of you, getting your beds back in shape but with your green thumb it will emerge as beautiful as ever.

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

I, too, am jealous of the 14 acres with a creek running through, it, Rilly. THAT would be my dream property. Thanks for paying me visit. :)