Monday, July 11, 2005


The best way (for me) to connect with what I need to do in the garden is to actually put my hands on plants or dirt (hence hands in the dirt as a way of life).

This weekend, I started pulling out excess asters (the tall kind that put out purple or pink flowers in the fall). Most seasons I keep pinching them back so that they don't get too leggy, but this year I've let them go. Because of re-seeding, they have popped up in places I don't want them, I've been quite heartless in removing the errant ones.

While doing this yanking out (something that doesn't come naturally to most of us who till in the garden) I noticed something about my perennial flowers. I tend to lean on letting them crowd a bit. My shade garden looks pristine and neat. But I like seeing tall stemmed flowers swaying out, clumped naturally, full of bees and butterflies and birds flitting around. So the perennial beds don't appear to have an order to them. There are waves of color, and various heights, but they are also a bit loosey-goosey.

Pulling the asters out, though, reminded me that sometimes too much foilage can take away from the blooms of other plants, and my clearing out the stray asters gave the daisies and phlox more focus.

No comments: