When I was a child, I had a book called ‘The big orange splot’. It was all about a ‘neat street’ where all the houses looked the same. Until one day, when a seagull flew over Mr Plumbean’s house carrying a tin of orange paint, and drops the tin on his house. It goes on to say that this starts a chain of events which leads to all the houses being individualized to reflect the dreams and lives of the people living in them.
I live on a neat street. My neighbor, who we will call Bernie, because that’s his name, is in his garden, rain, hail or shine, every Saturday. He weeds his lawn, and he picks the leaves up off his garden bed which is covered in black dyed mulch. He has manicured rose bushes that lead to his front door, and a beautiful weeping cherry tree in his front yard. Our other neighbor has the same black dyed mulch, a border of manicured lavender, and a smaller version of Bernie’s weeping cherry tree.
Then we have our house. Our garden is like the Botanic Gardens. The Botanic Gardens for weeds that it. Recently I got out there to weed it, because it was ridiculously embarrassing. I had weeds taller than the plants! I filled a wheelie bin, just with one section of the garden. While I was weeding my mother-in-law called to see how we were, and asked hubby what we were doing. He replied, weeding. She thought we said weaving. Apparently it was more plausible that we would be sitting around on a Saturday afternoon as a family, weaving, than weeding our garden.
We tried at one point to find someone to come out and look after our garden for us. We are totally realistic about our capabilities, and gardening is not one of them. We couldn’t find anyone in the area to come out – surely not everyone in the neighbourhood does their own garden? Driving around on a Saturday or a Sunday, confirms that probably 90% do. I’m now considering paying Bernie to come over and look after my garden. I’m pretty sure he’d do it at a reduced rate, just so that he doesn’t have to look at our weedy jungle. Although with all the rain we’ve had lately, it is very green and lush…
My mother and my father-in-law are excellent gardeners. They both have amazing vegetable gardens and grow so much of their own food. Neither hubby nor I have inherited these skills. We have killed mint and rosemary in our garden. Yes really. Although, when I did weed the front garden bed, I did find a lettuce and tomato plant growing there. I think my mum must have dug in some compost, and these grew from it.
Do you live on a neat street? Do you enjoy gardening? Or are you botanically challenged, like me?