I find it incredible how messy a garden can get over the course of the winter. I mean, granted, I did not actually clean the garden at the end of the summer last year, but I am sure that it did not look this bad when the snow fell.
Every year, around this time of year, I am reminded of when we bought this house. It was February and as we walked the lightly snow covered back yard, my husband commented that my neighbor must be a slob. I looked across the fence and promptly smacked my husband upside the head. “That’s not a mess,â€ I told him, “that is a garden.â€ We put an offer in on the house that day. Never underestimate the value of a gardener neighbor.
How is it a garden turns into that in just a few months? Is Jack Frost that much of a slob? My initial thought on this is, “Of course he is, he is male.â€ But that probably isn’t fair (even though I have plenty of anecdotal evidence of this with 3 male children and a husband under one roof.)
The past several weeks have been spent picking up after nature. Dead stems, crushed and twisted under snow and sleet, are now surfacing. Gnomes, mugged by brutal, cold winds, lay sprawled and violated among dazed perennials and dead annuals. It is so bad, you fully expect the 6 o’clock news to be on your doorstep any minute to film it. And that is just the front yard. The carnage you find in the back yard is only fit to be shown on the 11 o’clock news when all the kiddies are in bed and the fight for ratings demands that holy horror be shown.
How did it get this bad? Granted, I got lazy at the end of the season and COMPLETELY blew off cleaning up the garden, but I know that it did not look this bad. And so thus begins the big garden clean up. I suppose I can’t complain too much. The spring is finally here and cleaning up after Old Man Winter is not so bad, as long as he doesn’t come back for a good six months to start mussing up my garden all over again.