How do weeds and bugs survive in chilly, dry, wind when the poor plants we love get completely beat up? It’s a mystery to me. No matter how well I care for a plant it never is as hardy as the weed next to it. This is in spite of hoeing, pulling, and/or cutting the unwanted growth. I must admit I came very close to losing any good humor this week because of the need for endless watering in the annoying, at best, wind. This is no simple twist of a faucet. We’re talking turning on a noisy generator and running it continuously for fuel.
Okay, now that I’ve bored you with a paragraph full of whining, I must admit that spring in all it’s glory is upon us. My fruit trees are all in bloom. A special shout out to both my crab apple and fragrant viburnum; they are fabulous. Last year my son, Jeremiah, gave me a beautiful yellow magnolia for Mother’s Day. Note to him: I’m coveting a red bud this year. The ones at the end of North Road are only a couple of years old and already impressive.
Speaking of impressive, how about the gigantic ornamental cherries this year? I was pleased to purchase some stamps this week at the Post Office. They were of the cherry blossoms in Washington with the monuments in the background. Very nice! I lived in our Nation’s Capitol for a few years following college. The cherry trees in bloom are truly a sight.
I’m sad to report I had to give up on my preferred method of potato planting. I like to toss the spuds on the ground and cover with hay. It works great. It improves the area and the potatoes are easy to harvest and clean. But my new garden is infested with my new nemesis, the vole. He took nibbles out of almost every potato last year as he ran around under the nice, cozy hay. This year, I went back to the traditional method of digging rows and covering each tuber with dirt. Get me to my chiropractor, quickly.
My one-hundred foot-long piece of weed mat is still firmly in place at the top of a tree. It’s been there for a couple of weeks after a rogue whirlwind lifted it out of my garden. It is beginning to work its way lower. Soon I should be able to grab it with a rope and put it back where it belongs. It’s actually quite a sight but I’m over seeing it!
Nancy Hall has a lovely specimen of the Eastern, or American, larch known as tamarack. It is easily fifty feet tall. It has leafed out and is gorgeous next to the Tisbury town hall. There are very few needle-bearing trees that are deciduous. A trip down Spring street in winter could convince you it is a dead evergreen in need of bucket-truck, tree removal. With its light blue, pale green, new growth it is a beautiful tree.
I’ve been applying the de Sade method in pruning my lavenders. I’m sick of its unruly woody nature. Some I cut practically to the ground. I’ve had very good luck with growing it from seed. I start it in January in an unheated greenhouse and transplant it once inside. After a year in a seed bed outside it is ready for assignment to an herb garden or sunny border.
I was happy to see President Obama cozying up with Bill Clinton. Who could be a more formidable surrogate on the campaign trail? After the contentious 2008 primary, ex-president Clinton must love seeing the mutual respect between Obama and Hillary. I was interested in Clinton’s admiration and respect for the President’s decision to go into Pakistan and take out Bin Laden. Not so, Mitt Romney. After saying he wouldn’t waste the resources going after one man (that’s right, Mitt, there is Google), he commented on Monday “of course he would have done it, even Jimmy Carter would have.”
What a cheap shot at Jimmy Carter. He tried a gutsy rescue of Iran hostages in the daring helicopter raid which failed in a desert sandstorm. That failure cost him reelection. Obama faced the same result if he failed and yet he still made the presidential decision. Mitt Romney can’t stick to any of his decisions or convictions.