Thurs. June 13, 2019: Knowing When To Ask For Help


Thursday, June 13, 2019
Second Quarter Moon in Libra
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Oak
Rainy and cool

It’s been a chaotic few weeks on all fronts, which, of course, affected the garden.

I finally capitulated, in spite of the shame, both outer and inner, that if I can’t do all the tasks in a yard, I don’t deserve to have one. I hired someone to mow. I’ve hated mowing since I started doing it. I never found my mowing Zen. I’m tired of spending money and spending money and spending money on equipment that works for five minutes and then doesn’t do the job.

Finding the right person was a challenge. After half a dozen bad experiences with rude, arrogant jerks who came in and TOLD me what they were going to do, and how much extra they were going to charge me instead of LISTENING to what I want done, I started asking around for all-female-run landscape services. Nothing really came up when I did an internet search. I put out the question to some organizations with which I’m connected.

In the meantime, I found a list of ten best mowing services in my area on a site called Thumbtack. I contacted a couple on that list. One guy was really nice, responded right away. He listened to what I had to say. He stopped by when he said he would to take walk around. We walked the property, and I told him the back-story on some things I wanted, and where I needed help catching up, and what I would then take on (the beds) once I was caught up. He was very nice, he listened, he didn’t try to shame me or bully me. He offered a fair price to both of us — a little more for the first visit, and then a steady price for subsequent visits. He showed up the very next day and did in an hour what it usually took me several days. I paid him upfront for the first visit — he said he could bill me, but I said I wanted to pay him then and there, since it was our first time working together.

And I’ll see him in two weeks.

It’s such an immense relief, I can’t even find the words.

I can concentrate on getting down fertilizer (I did some of that) and working on the beds. I’ve cleaned out the front beds, and gotten the invasives out of the sides. I’m letting the roses run rampant until they bloom and fade, and then doing a serious prune. I pruned the flowering tree at the front side of the house.

The landlord hasn’t yet gotten anyone in to move the 23-foot tree limb that came down in a storm a few weeks ago, or the tree that’s leaning and concerns me. I tried to move the tree limb myself and couldn’t. The guy who mowed moved it. I got the rest of the brush cleared before he came to mow.

The tomatoes are finally growing up. I still have seedlings to transplant. The kale and mesculin greens are doing well, but none of the spinach came up. The herbs are doing well. The moonflowers and morning glories are coming up. The eggplants are doing well.

The Irises bloomed, and they are beautiful.

I still have to start the beans, the peas, the squash, and the flowers, even though it’s quite late in the season. But it’s just been too cold.

Here’s hoping I can now spend time doing what I enjoy doing in the garden, now that I have someone kind and reliable to mow!

Cleaning Up After The Storms

March 29, 2018
Mercury Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny/cloudy and mild

It was actually dry enough, the past few days, to start cleaning up after the series of nor’easters that battered us in March. Most of the snow is gone, especially in my yard. There are some piles in corners along the street, but my yard is okay.

I started in the front. I’m in the process of clearing away all the branches and tree limbs that came down over the month. Not easy work, especially when it came to the large tree limb that broke off the dogwood. I hope I can work all through the weekend and make some serious progress. I should be able to finish the front yard today.

I’ll have to rake it then, still leaves around. I have to rake out the beds in the front. I used leaves to mulch in the winter, but there’s new growth, and I need to scrape away the old leaves and let it breathe.

I started cutting back the dead growth in the terraced bed in the back. I’d wanted to wait until it all passed and re-seeded itself naturally, but then the weather turned, and I couldn’t finish. Again, I used leaves to mulch. The new growth is coming up, so I have to rake it out. I cut back a good bit of it yesterday.

I also got out the handsaw and took out some invasive autumn olive and several oak saplings that are acting like invasives, especially within the rose bushes on the side of the house. When I’m sure it will stay mild in a week or two, I’ll give the roses a hard prune back — they’ve made that side of the house nearly impassable.

I still have a lot of that weird cedar-like invasive to dig out. I have to make sure I get the roots, or it just springs up somewhere else.

The crocuses are blooming, which is great. The daffodils and hyacinths are growing, but it’s been too cold for them to actually do much.

Yes, there’s a lot of work to do. If we have a string of days where the weather holds, it’ll be great. So often, the days I have time to work in the yard are the days where the weather is off.

But I’m looking forward to how beautiful it will be, once it’s cleaned up and ready for growing season!