Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Slackers Unite

Daylily "Blue Diana"
New gardeners sometimes get caught up in the enthusiasm and garden pictorials.  

Older gardeners sometimes get caught up in thinking they must do everything they've done in the past.

Busy job-holding/children-rearing gardeners sometimes feel they must do everything for everyone all the time.

OCD gardeners sometimes think they must have it all completed and perfect.

Impatient gardeners sometimes want it all done yesterday.

All of these gardeners need to take a lesson from our friend, the garden slacker.
Daylily "Carnival in Mexico"
The lesson isn't to STOP everything and let your garden turn into a wasteland.  The lesson is to do gardening in little time parcels - little bits of energy - little portions of physical expenditure - little quantities of cash outlay.  

There is nothing wrong with slacking off of perfection.  Oh! My! Gosh! did she really say we don't need garden perfection???  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I did.  And, here's the reasoning:

Nature is made up of little bits and pieces of perfection snuggled between imperfection.   My favorite flower, the daylily, is a good example.  It carries a rather ho-hum bud for days before it unfolds a beautiful flower.  Only to be followed in a few hours by a less than pretty dead flower.  It's the cycle of nature.

To think every moment and piece of our garden's life should be perfection is as unrealistic as expecting that daylily to leave out the bud/dead stages.  Once you can accept the boundaries and limitations of the cycle of life in your garden, you are better prepared for your new garden slacker philosophy.
Daylily "Lunar Max"
Some suggestions:

Buy only one bag of spring flowering bulbs to be planted this fall.  Next year do another and etc.

Weed a designated area only.  Decide before you go out that you will only work within a 6 x 6 foot plot (or whatever your limits) and stop when it's done that day.  

Trim or prune bushes for a set time limit - no matter how far that takes you in one day.

Paint one lawn chair (or whatever) and then clean up the mess and be done for that day.

Go to one nursery, pick out only the amount of plants you can carry to the car in one load.  Go home and plant them and be done for the day.  

Notice: I haven't said do one thing and never do it again the rest of the year.   I'm talking about reasonable steps. 
Daylily "Nuit D'Amour"
Another example:  No one wants to listen to the complete works of Led Zeppelin or John Denver or Elvis or Luke Bryan or Beverly Sills hour after hour with no break.  A few songs and it's exquisite.   A marathon turns it into torture.

Your gardens should never be turned into torture or you've massively missed the point of gardening.  Take a hint from our slacker buddies!             

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