When was the last time you did something completely new and out of your element? How was it? Will you do it again?
It was not completely new, it was not out of my element, but at my golden oldie age and physical condition no, I will not do it again. There are times in your life when you have a brilliant idea, want to change something. On the left in the photo you see part of my flowerbed covered with some sort of creeping plant that engulfs everything, prouduces pretty blue flowers in Spring and known as Vinca minor. Unfortunately this plant decided to rebel against its name and laws of nature and became a Vinca Major, covering everything within its reach. Not only this but various grass seeds found an ideal place to breed beneath this creeping scourge and so eventually I had a lawn covered with Vinca Minor/Major with a couple of plants in between.
There was a further negative aspect of this blue carpet of flowers and grass, the snails were happy. They were in their element bringing their knives and forks and the plant on the left, of which I cannot remember the name but has pretty flowers every year, loses all of its leaves during the Summer due to a snail banquet which continues into Autumn. With more luck than judgement it manages to produce flowers.
Despite my rusty limbs and reluctance to bend, I decided on a drastic change. The Vinca major/minor must go. The snails will no longer be able to hide and invade the rest of this garden. No problem of course. I have everything under control - except for my muscles and back of course. It began one day with just the bottom part (not ever photographed). I took the king sized fork and dug. I removed a few tons of stones on the way. No problem, the fork survived and well I was still standing afterwards. Vinca Major fought back with all its strength. It entangled its stems in my fork, in my feet and I was sure it began to grow in a spiral motion along my legs. I took the fork and hit back and eventually one small part of this king-sized flower bed was vinca free. The bare earth could be seen. To celebrate I planted a foxglove seedling I bought at the local supermarket gardening department, also known as digitalis, thinking if I had a heart attack on the way it would help. I called it a day and spent the next hour admiring my work, known that this was only a third of the bed.
The next day I continued undaunted. There were screams from vinca major, there were sighs of relief from my other plants, but after a week I won. Vinca is still there in between begging for mercy, but I fought on killing it where I saw it. In the meanwhile I had bought a 50 litre bag of fresh earth to renew the strength of the killing field. This was no problem earth/muck spreading on my newly prepared flower bed. I managed to scrub the dirt from my broken finger nails and hands with a strong brush, what could possibly go wrong.
I decided that a rose bush would be the crowning glory of my new flower bed. I remembered that the local super market (again to my rescue) had a new selection of garden roses. I wanted a red rose, but there were only pinks and white. I already have a red rose in my garden, so I eventually decided on a rose known as “Blue Girl”. It is pink, a perfume rose, but has a slight hint of thinking about going into a blue mood, but not quite. When I arrived home I showed the rose it’s new place and it had water drops in the middle for happiness. I dug a large hole as I saw that its pot was very long and imagined roots stretching to the lower world. I soon discovered that only half the large pot was rose plant the the rest earth. No problem and so I planted my new rose. Unfortunately I forgot to tell the local newspaper to take a photo. I will invite them when it grows and flowers. I now have a new flower bed and spent many happy hours recovering from the work. Why do I do these foolish things, because they are there I suppose.
“What about me?”
“Who said that?”
“The remains of you vinca major/minor.”
and that was the end of that episode. And now the finished flower bed, a photo I took yesterday during the monsoon rain we were receiving. On the extreme left my Foxgove with my new wonderful prize suspicious rose. In the middle the nice flowering plant I have forgotten the name of and on the right my Lenten rose which is actually an offspring from the large Lenten rose in the next bed. The small blue spots you see in the earth are the sprinklings of my snail killing squad. There are now only slime spurs on the earth.