Thursday, June 11, 2009

Summer Survival Blog, Day 2

With the warmer weather, comes the compulsion to garden. Even in our age of email, laser surgery, and microwaved gas station burritos, there is a primal need in us to harvest and gather like that which drove our earliest ancestors. The desire to reap what you sow. And in my case, it's simply the inclination to stick a few plants in the ground to see if I can nurture them enough to keep them from whithering away.

I am not a gardener. I desperately WANT to be a gardener, but I seem to have a really difficult time keeping green things alive. I think it has something to do with giving them water. As in, that you NEED to give them water. And over the years, through some trial and error, I've started to get the hang of the most basic gardening principles. So it's a matter of pride that I've actually managed to construct a gorgeous flower bed in my front yard this year. When we moved in it was a horrendously messy tangle of weeds, grass, and overgrown shrubs. Once I pulled out a waist-high bush only to realize that once upon a time, it had been an oregano plant. I completely tore the entire area apart and started from scratch. And if I do say so myself, it looks beautiful. I am so freakin' proud of it.

High on the success of my flowerbed, I moved on to rehabbing the corner of our yard. I so full of myself after my flowerbed triumph that I decided to bypass the novice marigolds for this overly sunny spot and I dove headfirst into the challenge of maintaining a rose bush.

My tiny rosebush beckoned to me one afternoon while I was at Bi-Mart. I was picking up mulch and vegetable seedlings. Mulch and vegetable seedlings are things that sensible people buy when they realize that they are not gardening material. Vegetable seedlings are cheap, so if (when?) they die, you can just bury the cracker-dry evidence in your garbage can, buy another ten seedlings, and pretend it never happened.......not that I would know. And mulch has the advantage of not being alive. Bonus.

So there I was with my red pepper plants, perky tomato starters, and cucumber babies. And something about that little rose bush by the register called my name. "You can dooooo this" it beckoned me. "Take me hooooome" it implored. And being the tenderhearted wannabe gardener that I am, I gave in. Besides, I figured that it couldn't be any harder to hide a cracker-dry rose bush in the garbage than it is to hide a few kindling-like tomatoes......again, not that I would know.

So just like that, I had a rose bush.

I get that for some people, this isn't a big deal. It shouldn't even be a big deal for ME - after all, I have managed to keep three kids, three cats, two dogs, and a husband alive. But as my girlfriend Charlotte points out, those are all things that squawk if not fed and watered regularly. Plants just look more and more sad while they droop away, glaring at you balefully. So keeping a rose bush alive will be a challenge unlike any other I've taken on in my short career as a green thumb. And in an effort to make myself more accountable, I'm showing all of you my tiny fledgling rosebush, as it appears on our second day of summer break. In about two months, I'll take another picture of it so that we can compare.

Hopefully, it will still be there.

Summer, Day Two


Currently Reading: Nineteen Minutes, Jody Picoult


kat said...

what a beautiful rose bush! i tried one this year too, but didn't get it planted in time i fear. i keep hoping it will perk up, but rather think it will end up with the other dried out starts :-(

still -- lessons for next year, hmm?

nana said...

Your Grandma always had a rose bush. She liked them, so I think it is wonderful that you have taken this step. Keep up the good work!! LU

Freckledmama said...

Damn Mom I forgot that I was going to talk about Grandma's rose bush - they way I remember it when I was a kid! I'll have to do that next time when mine (hopefully) grows and I take a new picture!

Marcy said...

Hey beautiful rose bush. Looks like it gets a lot of sun. They like that. Just curious as to what kind of bark that is? If it's cedar, that might hurt your rose bush. Cedar tends to give off a poison into the ground and hurts the soil. Might want to check it out. Can't wait to see you soon.