It’s been a stressful week. When your heart is open, it acts a bit like a sponge. The sadness of others laps at my soul.
The news isn’t mine to share, and sharing it won’t change it anyway. Instead, I donned my garden gloves, picked up a pair of garden shears and got busy. In my world, pruning is therapeutic.
Cutting away at dead growth or removing crossed or brittle branches helps shape the plant and ready it for fall. I worked my way through the curb garden, the triangle garden, the side garden and one of the areas in front of our sickly tree.
As I reached into the soil to plant additional bulbs, I unearthed several narcissus from last year. I tucked them back in for the winter, and made new holes a few spaces over. I like imagining the bulbs resting under ground, storing energy till they make their early spring debut.
Chocolate mint has been running amok, sending shoots out of the bottom of the planter box. I cut back what I could, then stretched the shoots over the top of the box and pruned them clear of the gravel. That incredible scent tickled my senses as I ran my hands through the leaves.
Two unidentified plants are now a meter tall. I don’t know what they are but they’ve made it this far so they get to stay. Novelty is good, even it they do look a bit out-of-place.
I pruned away the diseased branches of our Magnolia. It’s possible I went too far this time, but after hours spent trying to defeat Magnolia scale, drastic measures were due.I removed branches from the shrubs below the tree, taming them back to the walkway’s edge. The last of the summer annuals were next. Piles grew in corners here and there. I filled the wheelbarrow, made another pile on a small tarp and brought order to the garden. My back ached as it grew harder and harder to stand up. I worked some more.
By day’s end, I’d logged four hours in the garden. I pruned, pulled, chopped, raked, and swept. I planted spring bulbs and dressed the side yard with a thick layer of mulch. Exhausted, I finally called it a day. I packed up my tools, washed away the day’s dirt and took my boys out for a quiet dinner.
Some days you tend a garden; some days the garden tends you.