I hope that when you've read my previous posts and seen the photos of my garden you've thought that I have a rather nice one. Maybe you've even thought it was a little pretty (fingers crossed). But I've been keeping something from you all. There are some decidedly ugly bits. I have some visible deficiencies around the garden, some of them downright failures.
Take, for example, my blueberry bush. It has not performed quite as I had hoped. What's worse is that I began with two blueberry bushes, but a person coming to service the yard killed the first one. The recently planted seedling was there when I left for work in the morning, and when I returned home, I found it snapped in half. I nursed it as best as I could, hoping that it would revive, but it transformed into a dry stick within a week. Now all I have is the other plant, which really looks like little more than two sticks, although not dry like its sibling. Those two sticks actually have a surprising number of blueberries on them, but the plant falls far short of expectations. In fact, I wonder if it isn't smaller than it was when it arrived here. It is ultimately supposed to be 4 feet tall, but right now, I'd just be happy with it scaling to heights as meager as 10 inches. I am embarrassed to tell people what it is when they ask.
|The sad blueberry...perhaps it misses its mate?|
|A shadow of its former self|
|The struggling Dorsett apple tree|
I like to think that I'm smarter than squirrels. I was certain that I could deter them with my wits. I went to the fabric store and bought some netting, the kind used to puff up prom dress skirts. I sewed the netting into cone shapes and slipped them over the hangers and planters. The squirrels seemed beaten. We had ripe strawberries. I would daily lift the veils on my precious plants and pick a few, sweet fruits. Then my foes must have had a board meeting. I imagined them talking about plans to build new nests in the nearby trees. One asks for building material suggestions. Another pipes up, "You know that red-headed lady who sews? Well, she left some netting on her strawberries. I figure we can use that." And use it they did. Day after day, I arrived home from work to find more of the netting torn from the planters. Once they had used up all of that, they moved on to the coconut fiber lining. The strawberry plants fell out. I was gutted. Only one strawberry plant survived Squirrel War I. I'm not sure I'm up for reconstruction.
|The pillaged strawberry planter|
But look who just got a hole in one.
|Alstroemeria seedlings in their plastic cocoon|