Monday, February 04, 2008

I gardened this weekend!

So what if it's dark, dreary, and cold. I did some gardening this weekend anyway. Saturday was "let's do my least favorite winter chore day," a/k/a the day I pruned the marionberries and boysenberries. There are two good reasons why I hate that job: 1) I don't do it in late August, when I should, so the darn things have sent out a gazillion runners at least 15-20 feet in every direction, which I have to pull up and either wind around the wire supports or cut off; and 2) the berries fight back. Oh, don't bother to tell me that plants aren't sentient and can't behave aggressively toward humans. If you believe that, you've never met my berries! After I wrapped a 20'-long runner around the berry fence, the last 5 feet snapped back and rake me across the face, leaving big thorn scratches on my cheek. Then, when I bent over to pick up the cuttings, the runners reached out and grabbed me by the hair--nearly every time. By the time I came in, I looked like I'd been locked in a small room with about 50 angry cats. But I won! I pruned the stupid things and stuffed the, I mean prunings... in the yard waste bin. I showed them.

Today was more fun--and considerably less painful. Today was dark and dreary, and I was bored. Bored, bored, bored. I decided to go plant shopping, but most of the nurseries are either closed till later in the year or closed on Mondays. Desperate to spend what was left of my paycheck, I ended up at Lowe's, which had a few bare-root perennials, shrubs, and trees in stock. I came away with two bare-root peonies. And then, something amazing happened. I planted them THE SAME DAY I BOUGHT THEM! Really! Someone should alert the media. Usually I go on shopping sprees, and by the time I get home it's either pouring rain, or I'm too tired to do anything. I add the new purchases to the pile already waiting for permanent homes and hope they don't die before I plant them. But not today!

After planting the peonies, I started a flat of cool-weather seeds--leeks, coleus, lettuce, and broccoli. It's now sitting in a 20-gal aquarium topped with fluorescent lights, one of the many places I germinate seeds in the house. What a productive afternoon.

Ouch. I think I just dislocated my elbow while patting myself on the back.


Meg said...

If it's any consolation, an East Coast friend of mine emailed me yesterday to ask why on EARTH I would WANT to get rid of blackberries in my yard. Don't I like to eat them? Don't I know how lucky I am to have blackberries growing in my very own yard?! What kind of crazy person AM I? Let the blackberries win! Fiber! Vitamin C! Antioxidants! For free in my backyard!

As soon as the weather clears up here, I'm obviously going to have to send her some photos. These are no ordinary berry plants we have here in the Pacific Northwest, people. Berries go INSANE here. They become huge thorny monsters with a license to kill. They're Double-Oh-Seven berries!

Berries. James Berries.

It's a miracle I still have two eyes. Not to mention ten fingers and three arms.

Wait, two arms.

In other words, Janet, I totally feel your pain.

Meg said...

p.s. You go, gardening girlfriend!

Janet said...

My son takes the same view of the matter as your friend: Let's keep the berries! They're yummy! So I have to explain that there's a difference between the berries we grow for food and the radioactive mutants that spring up everywhere and will eat the yard in one season.

There are berries, and there are the Evil Canes from Hell.