April 6, 2009

Yard Monkeys

I worked under the cloudless sky on our rock bordered landscape gardens. I was grateful for such a nice day after the crappy fall and winter we’ve been through. The night before, after the OJ made her wanna, the weatherman called for a high of seventy today. Hallelujah and pass the pruning shears.

The first order of business was cleaning out the narrow garden strips on either side of the backyard deck. I couldn’t use the rake as the hostas and ferns had their heads already poked up through the ground. Being careful where I stepped, I did the orangutan walk, picking up leaves and twigs as I lumbered along.

I came to this small weedy looking sapling that I had meant to dig out last August while I was putting up the new fence. I think it was a Rose of Sharon tree that had seeded itself there somehow. A Rose of Sharon by any other name would look as ugly. I retrieved from the shed my trusty irrigation shovel with the recently sharpened blade and struck it into the soil eight inches from the base. I could feel the blade hit the tap root and after the eighth strike I felt the root sever and despite hanging on for life I pulled the stubborn little yip out of the ground. The song birds cried my victory.

I heard my wife from the other side of the fence, “Look at all the hawks!” Looking up I saw seven hawks making wide lazy circles, their outstretched wings floating on the rising thermals. Over the past few years it seems there are more and more hawks making a living in our area. It’s a beautiful sight and makes you wish you could fly along with them.

I joined my wife pruning the burning bush next to the driveway. The bush had gotten so out of hand we used the ladder to trim the top part. There was one branch in the middle we couldn’t reach to cut. It looks as though the burning bush has an antenna for carbon dioxide reception. I mowed the lawn and then we cleared the gardens on the south side of the house.

It was a long day outside cleaning up from the very messy winter and everything looked a little better. The next thing is composting, mulching, and fine tuning the irrigation system which will take every bit of a three day weekend.

I woke up Sunday with a very sore back and it’s still sore today. Damn that Rose of Sharon. You’d think with the hours we spend at the gym I wouldn’t feel sore from gardening. Maybe I need to develop an aerobic routine with a shovel.

Watching the news I see that we're getting snow tonight with a low of 32 degrees. Is this rogue winter ever going to end?

1 comment:

  1. If it makes you feel any better, it is supposed to get as low as 30 degrees tonight in Houston, where it's been in the high 70's-low 80's and even a little humid for the last little while.

    I applaud how much you two got done in one day! Amazing, and even if it snows, not a loss or waste. If you'd planted then that might be another story.

    Beautiful and engaging prose BB....oh, and I saw the OJ commercial. Made my husband rewind the Tivo to watch it and told him about your wife's classic line. Loved it.