This is the time of year when the ostrich ferns seem to grow right before your eyes! Being outside so much with Finn (literally having a ball), I have had lots of time to look and see what’s there (without DOING). I may casually lean over and sweep dirt and pebbles off the rock wall and steps with the side of my hand, or gather up the dessicated catalpa pods, but mostly I am looking. There is evidence of the harsh impositions of this past winter everywhere.
As we trip toward June, the garden truly calls. I will be simplifying out there, as I have been doing everywhere else. There’s no need, for instance, to keep every wild garlic and every naturalized clump of spring flower when they turn the entire line of plantings into a giant mess.
I have a little landscaping job two blocks away that will keep me busy for a few days as well. The question presented was — why are plants dying with such regularity? I thought we might need to test the soil or limb some of the shade-giving maples. Turns out, the soil (EVERYWHERE) is densely packed with a fine mesh of nearly impenetrable roots — so much so that an azalea planted last year had what looked like pot-bound roots. Needless to say, it did not thrive.
“What happens when our need for nourishment is blocked?” is a question I will be with as Danny and I work. Dig, dig, dig (it’s HARD digging), shake, shake, shake (capturing some of the existing soil), and then: amend. How satisfying to then spade and turn the friable, rich soil!