Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Gardeners Are Such Fools

The heat has broken. Now, we only have days in the nineties and nights dipping near seventy. Mornings are really lovely.

Last week we had the first real rain since early spring. I got an inch and a half of the wet stuff. The garden is so much happier.

The reprieve from the August heat and lack of rain has raised my hopes for a fall garden. I am removing dead plants and preparing the ground for new plants. A friend who gardens in one the community gardens is busily cleaning out his plot. He will plant for fall soon. Gardeners are such fools.

Another friend passed two basil branches (basil picture above), well rooted in water, on to me. I planted one under the bird bath in the front yard, far from past basil failures. The other plant went into the vegetable garden in back. This time in the flower bed at the edge of the garden where the sunburned remains of forget-me-nots still litter the ground. The only plant that survived from spring is a hybrid wandering Jew. This plant has produced a beautiful rosette of leaves that seems not to mind the heat and lack of water.

I have two tomato plants to be put in the ground, and I will try the Japanese shiso again. I think I will add mint to the circle under the bird bath and more herbs in back. Once it is cooler, I will add some leafy vegetables to the garden. I want to grow some catnip near the water faucet in front, but I fear the cats would soon eliminate it.

On the east side of my house there is an extremely dry area with poor soil. Nothing has grown there all year, not even weeds. Of course, I could not stand that bare soil. Now, I have planted a variegated, thornless prickly pear, an ordinary prickly pear (right), an echeveria (below), and a volunteer plant with bright pink flowers, rescued from a neighbor who was going to mow it. My struggling kalanchoe and some rooted sanseveria leaves complete my attempt to bring life to that dead area. I will see what happens.

Gardeners are such fools.

P.S. My eggplant has set fruit.

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