9 ways my garden made me happy this week (GBBD June ’10)

I have been a neglectful gardener. I have been extremely neglectful garden blogger. My excuse is the Great Chefs Event, a huge fundraiser that benefits Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation and the research that will hopefully end childhood cancer someday. Huge success – 1000 people, 30+ famous chefs cooking and chatting, hundreds of thousands of dollars raised. My tiny little piece of that puzzle seemed to take over my life for the last few weeks, and my garden suffered. Probably my family suffered too, but fortunately, that is not the subject of this post. But that was last night. I’ve got the blisters on my toes to prove it (Somehow, I just couldn’t justify garden clogs with that great dress. Darned high heeled sandals!)

Today, I got to work in my garden. Ahhhhhhhh. And as I was puttering and watering and weeding, I realized that in the midst of my craziness, the garden has given me things to smile about. It continues to work, even when I can’t. So here are the ways my garden made me happy this week.


1. The monarda attracted the year’s first hummingbird. He joined us at dinner tonight. Bee balm? Maybe. Hummingbird balm? Definitely.

2. The lavender and the evening primrose bloomed simultaneously. Direct opposites on the color wheel, these complimentary beauties are textbook.

3. The salad I made to take to a friend’s this weekend called for fresh basil. I walked out the back door with a pair of scissors and had fresh basil.

4. A pair of goldfinches decided to make my feeder their home. They’ve been to visit daily.  Haven’t seen these guys since they were gray and gloomy in February.

5. I weeded the whole garden today in the time in took to roast a chicken. I know my yard’s not big, but 90 minutes is definitely a record for a whole garden weed. Hot weather? Lack of rain? Excessive mulching? I don’t know what’s keeping them down, but I’m smiling about it.

7. My sticks are blooming!!! Remember the bare root roses that I put in the ground while trying to muster the faith to believe that something would actually come of them? They’re showing off now boy.

8. The jackmanii clematis that I planted last month shriveled up and died.  Here’s to nurseries with guarantees! The new one is bigger and better. Whereas before I had one shoot that had made it 2 feet up the arbor, now I have three.

9. Hydrangeas. They ask so little, they give so much. (Mine are all real, by the way)

Clearly, my garden can live without me for a few weeks. True, it is the hours I spent last month, last year, three years ago that have set it up to produce without me, but I’m loving the return on my investment.

To see what’s blooming in other bloggers gardens this month, check out May Dreams Garden.

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13 responses to “9 ways my garden made me happy this week (GBBD June ’10)

  1. What on earth do you do to make your hydrangeas appear to bountifully happy? Also, are they in full sun??? The evening primrose (oenothera) has a center curved cross if you look closely. A lady friend in Delaware thought that was a beautiful Christian symbol….

  2. Hi MF – don’t know the trick – love, leaf mold mulch once a year, only prune off last years blooms – that’s my regimen. The pink one is in partial shade, purple one is in full sun up against a west facing stone wall. It must like the heat. I’ll check out those primroses.

  3. Wow, you’re hydrangeas are awesome! I’ve never had much luck with them.

  4. Dear Kelly, Any time or effort which goes into an attempt to understand and, ultimately, eliminate all forms of cancer is so well spent. Here in Britain Cancer Research UK relies almost entirely on voluntary contributions – possibly it is the same in the USA. Whatever, your time spent helping out is not wasted and your lovely garden will still be there for you to enjoy, as clearly you have been doing.

    Thank you so much for the very kind and thoughtful message left on my recent ‘Explanatory Note’. It was, and is, much appreciated.

  5. Hi Edith – it is great to be part of the attempt to make a difference in this arena. This foundation was started by cancer patient Alex when she was four years old – she put a lemonade stand in her front yard to raise money for her hospital. Now her foundation has raised over $35 million. What a legacy.

  6. Kelly, Kudos for your volunteer efforts for a truly worth cause! Your garden is lovely and hopefully you can relax a little now and enjoy it. Pam

  7. Thanks Pam. Ahhh…relax, enjoy. What a great plan.

  8. Enjoyed reading this positive uplifting post, as well as the one about the fake Hydrangea! Your shrubs & perennials are looking fantastic, and I am also amazed at how much JOY a garden can bring. When I’m out there weeding and puttering around, it always puts a smile on my face.

  9. Hi Kelly – your garden is lovely and you are lovely in doing what you can to make this better.

  10. The roses look great! I’m going to check out that great chefs event, sounds worthwhile and fun.

  11. Karma, you put yourself out to help others, and the garden puts out to help you. That is a lot of putting out, lol. Glad to see everything doing so well.

  12. Drooling over those Hydrangeas, that I am. Everything in your garden looks so pretty. I finally had a full, relaxing garden day yesterday. It’s a miraculous cure for whatever ails me. Now I just wish I could proudly claim that the weeds are under control…

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