Monday, April 25, 2005


I'm beginning to suspect some sort of nefarious plot.

Let me lay the facts before you and you judge. Be honest. I trust you.

I loves me my gardening. It basically takes the place of organized religion in my life. I dig, plant, rip out the weeds with glee. I think. I drift. I sing 80's songs in my head.

Let's jump in the Way Back machine to our 1st house, the rust red one with the horizontal yellow racing stripe around the middle and bullets in each of the 5 rooms (plus the bathroom). Horrible Bellingham, how I curse you. It was the best of the 3 houses we could afford, fresh out of residency. It did have a yard, fenced, and we had a new puppy, Maia, a German Shepherd. Our beloved friends, Bart and Peg, came up to visit, both skilled at gardening. I had never planted a thing in my life, only pulled a few dandelions in my mom's driveway on occasion. I always wanted to garden, though.

It was fall, and bulbs seemed to be the place to start.

Peg and I started in with the spade and planted a wide assortment of lovelies. Maia watched. We then went in for a bit, silly us. Maia stayed outside and got busy. When we came back, we found she had dug up every one of those bulbs and arranged them by the back door. Such a clever pup, and so thoughtful. We re-planted. She re-dug. We finally broke her of the habit at some point, I believe with the time honored spray bottle, or she just got sick of it. The next spring, she would greet me with a daffodil or tulip in her mouth, bulb attached, of course.

We moved back to Portland and in to our 2nd house. No bullets, no racing stripe. Small bit of garden on mostly wooded lot. Time to get a bit more bold with the plants. I bought seeds and put them in little peat pots. Sounded great, yes? $10 for everything. Can't remember what-all I planted but do remember columbines were among them. I love columbines. They are the 1st to be planted in a new garden. I only love roses better, for reasons I don't understand. Not sensible. For 2 months the kitchen counter was taken over by little peat pots with plantlets in them. Good thing I didn't cook at the time. I hardened them off, finally planting them in the bed on the side of the house. They grew. They thrived. They disappeared. Literally. I went out to smile at them in the morning and they were there. I went out to smile at them in the afternoon and they were gone, all but the uniform 1/2" stubble of stem sticking out of the ground.

I believe I actually cried.

I considered all the possibilities: Aliens? Cutworms? Slugs? Then the horrible epiphany hit me.


Charles with the weed-wacker in the garden. Trumps Col. Mustard with the candlestick in the conservatory, doesn't it?

He admitted it, claiming that he thought he was doing me a favor, as they looked like clover. Nevermind that they were planted in a clearly demarcated flowerbed. We came to an understanding.

Jump ahead to last week when all the goodies came. I planted all the bare-root ones including the Brown Turkey Fig. I have always wanted to have a fig tree growing in my yard. That I've never tasted a fresh fig is just beside the point. I'm sure they are wonderful. The thing is fig tree. In Wisconsin. Who could resist? I got home from work last Monday and found no tree. Just the ankles of one. Piled around the base were several finger-length pieces of trunk. Emma has joined the forces of evil.

There you have it, ladies and gentlemen of the jury. I didn't even present the evidence of the persistent tromping in the flowerbeds by the feet of the creatures, both 2-legged and 4-legged. I figure that is just a matter of course. Good natured hazing of the rooted, so to speak.

So, which is it? Conspiracy or Coincidence? Or just overwhelming jealousy?

Yesterday, we finished building The Raised Bed From Hell, each 20 lb cement block of cottage stone leveled in all 3 planes. Mostly. Now we just need to fill the 15" x 20" U-shaped bed with 2+1/2' walls with lovely topsoil and compost and we are in business. Think that will be a deterrent to the barbarians?

Me neither.

Anyone know where I can score some razor wire?

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Blogger Rozanne said...

Heart rending!!! I would feel like crying, too.

Our cat, the Boss (RIP), mowed down some nicely sprouting ranunculous tubers I had growing in pots once. And I thought I'd been sooooo careful to keep them in a place that was out of his reach. Of course, he made it his one goal in life to get to them, eat them, and then puke them onto the carpet.

I was livid! BTW: The reason he is RIP has nothing to do with the ranunculous incident, although I did momentarily feel almost capable of giving him the death sentence after that.

4:41 PM  
Blogger Cagey said...

It sounds like you need a nanny cam for your flower bed!

4:41 PM  
Blogger Jamie said...

Just wait till the deer come after my flowers and vegetables. I'll be crying with you. It was uuuuuugly last year.

4:44 PM  
Blogger Diana said...

Rozanne- Truly horrible! Cats are sometimes the spawn of satan. (I actually adore cats and can't wait for Sara to be old enough so we can get another, but I stand by my view.) And why can't they spew on the linoleum? WHY must it always be carpet with the green vomit? Evil, I tell you.

Cagey- That's it! A nanny cam is exactly what I need. You are so smart.

Jamie- We have many, many deer. They wander through the yard. Last year, they ate not a thing. I somehow feel that I am now putting the buffet at mouth level. My beloved aunt and uncle, who live on the Oregon Coast, fenced their garden with 7' high fencing, which worked until the bear sat on it. I think the deer paid him. Supposedly the closest bears are 40 miles from here. Supposedly.

5:24 PM  
Blogger Mojavi said...

haha, I haad the same experience with a mower... It was our first house in colorado and I had bought some pretty flowers, And placed them in a little cement cirle, (I am sure all the rage in 1994) anyway a neighborhood boy offered to mow our lawn. He mowed EVERYTHING! Even moved the little cement circles from around the flowers and MOWED! haha I was to dumb struck to be mad. Plus when he saw the look on my face he almost cried. So "stiff upper lip" paid him and never let him mow again.

6:03 PM  
Blogger Diana said...

Mojavi- Noooooo! Poor kid and poor, poor you! I have one of those cement rings in the back that the previous owners put in. So far, I have decided to keep it and am filling it with herbs. It is in a handy location for such things and at least the dog doesn't seem to run through it, yet.

8:55 AM  
Blogger The Lioness said...

"We have many, many deer. They wander through the yard."

Show off.


(BTW, I STILL don't know what you look like.)

(Yes, pressure.)

3:50 PM  

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