Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Clean Up

I have been making a concerted effort to clean up my yard this year. I have vowed to go out at least half an hour every day to perform my cleanup, but am finding that I am out for longer periods more often than not. Usually in the spring time, I run out to the garden center to get something to plant before the clean up is complete. Then , the cleanup is never completed. This year, I have focused on raking leaves and amending soil before I allow myself the indulgence of planting. It feels nice. After a decade of gardening, I finally feel like I have a big picture sense of the activity. Every part of the yard has been swept. Every plant has been examined and pruned. Each separate part of the garden is a separate room, waiting for its turn to be cleaned.

I planted pansies today. It was a present for all of the hard work. The final "room" outdoors was cleaned. The shaded space out my back door is a brick patio, generally covered with dirt, pine needles, weeds and moss. It felt lost and hopeless for a couple of years. Today, I set on it to scrub it clean. I raked the small spaces of dead dirt surrounding the brick, hardened by the time I neglected it. I even added manure and by the time I was through, the space felt new - a special find like when one scrubs a gray floor to find a white sparkling shine beneath. I have a vision of a real garden surrounding the patio now. The pansies I planted felt like decoration, as the flowers do when I place tulips on the counter. I feel like my gardens are cheering me on. I am ready to make the rounds again, starting with garden one and working my way around the yard.

I have new gardening friends to thank for showing me the way. The interviews from "The Gardener's Soul" breathed life into my own gardening habits. We gardeners learn a lot from each other. Gardeners are such generous people, willing to share their tips. There is so much to learn. There is always the opportunity to rethink our gardening styles and habits. And as we change, our gardens bend. How many times does a gardener have a breakthrough in a lifetime? How many times have you changed or refined your habits? What has led to YOUR breakthrough moments?


Mrs Be said...

No particular breakthrough moments here, learning so much that every moment feels like that.

Impressed with your clean-up routine. Would you like to come and tidy my garden?! ;-)

Nancy J. Bond said...

Really doing a proper cleanup of the garden is a bit like our mothers' saying, 'work first, play later'. :) Having a tidy workspace does add to the enjoyment.