Sunday, February 12, 2012

Confessions of a Lazy Gardener

The other day I caught myself cropping out the weeds in a photo for this blog. I'm always doing stuff like that - taking close ups, re-shooting photos from another angle, choosing the pictures that look the best - the ones that make my garden look good and hide the messes. And I feel that I ought to confess. I am a lazy gardener. I have loads and loads of weeds hanging about. I have couch grass crawling up my side fence. I have half-started garden projects hanging about just waiting for the weather to turn bad so I'll have a real excuse not to do them. I have been known to finally get started on a garden project just 'cos I want to blog about it. Sometimes when my friends visit they exclaim that my garden looks much better in my blog. Oh yeah, I am a naughty, sneaky blogger.

Part of the reason I started this blog was for motivational purposes. I had grown some veggies for the first time and was very pleased with myself. But I didn't know what to do with the beetroot I'd managed so let them grow and grow and wasted them and felt very guilty in the process.

So, for your entertainment, to ease my conscience and as a motivational exercise, I thought I might take a bunch of pictures of my laziness. Hopefully in my next post you will see how industrious I have been and I can show you all some after shots. Or I'll give the macro setting on my camera a workout and you'll be so bamboozled by my colourful close-ups that you'll forget all about this post.

Weeds & Junk in the Herb Garden
See all those weeds. And see those kitchen implements lying on the ground? I had made a kinda quirky hanging sculptury thing against the fence with those old saucepans and mixers and things. I proudly blogged about it here. But Monkey Man objected to the clanging noise they made on a windy night and he silenced them by tying them up. And in my snippiness I ripped them down (yes, aside from laziness I have other faults - a bit of a temper). And that is where they have stayed in a discarded heap for several months now.

Revived Passionfruit from Suckers
A few months ago I made mention of my dying passionfruit vine. Kind bloggers diplomatically suggested it ought to be ripped out. And I did in all honesty intend to dig it up and make better use of that valuable, sunny, spot. It's just that it hasn't happened yet. Instead the vine has grown suckers everywhere and has sprouted from under the graft spots. And it's all looking rather leafy and lush. If I didn't know better I'd have thought my magic, inactive, green thumb had revived it. But those re-shoots won't ever grow me passionfruit and it's only looking green 'cos I've been lazy. And I could have planted something else in there - or at least given it a green manure crop to prepare for something else in the meantime.

The De-Grassing Project
I plan to de-grass my garden. In spring I started on the project rather enthusiastically. I dug a path all 'round the plum tree and made more garden beds and sat down in the hammock to contemplate just what material I would use on the garden paths. And that's where I stopped. Most days I have a swing in the hammock with a cup of tea in hand and contemplate again just what to use instead of grass in the garden. And meanwhile the grass weeds grow taller on my intended paths.

Death in Planter Boxes

I have dead plants in pots decorating the garden everywhere. I've managed to kill everything on the ladder this summer. See that tomato plant to the right. It's a self-seeder. I've done nothing to help it along. I thought at first that bamboo stake might provide some support but it fell down in a wind and I never propped it back up. Instead I'm hoping that it'll grow itself up the ladder and I'll get tomatoes without even trying. That's the kinda gardener I am - lazy but optimistic.

More Weeds Suffocating the Flowers
This spot in front of the wood shed has always suffered from weeds. But they're easy to pull out 'cos there's lots of mulch under there. Not that you'd notice at the moment. One day I had a spark of inspiration and I shook out some calendulas that had gone to seed all over the spot. And wouldn't you know it, success. Bunches of flowers sprouted which pleased me immensely. No digging, watering or tending. My sort of gardening. But since then I haven't done any weeding and the flowers are being smothered by the weeds and someone has dropped bits of wood on the ground in the wrong spot so it really is a mess.

Junk Pile
Last week I showed you a pic of the old washer I mosaiced. What I carefully obscured from your gaze was this pile of junk sitting nearby. These are weeds that I pulled up a long time ago (I can assure you they've been there a long while because it's been a long while since I've done a proper weed).  I intended to be rid of those weeds and to store those weed-containing vessels in the shed. I also thought I might drill some holes in that kiddies wheelbarrow and use it to house some flowers or veggies. But instead I have a junk pile. And some of the weeds that ought to have died in a hot weed pile are thriving. Namely that rotten Wandering Dew which apparently causes itches in dogs and is very difficult to be rid of. Especially if you are an organic gardener and are relying on the method of pulling up the weeds yourself. And especially if you have a lazy bone which prevents you from doing a proper, regular weed to be properly rid of it.

Well I could post a few more lazy photos but I think you get the picture. I must say it feels good to confess. Much better than when I was a child at a Catholic Primary School and was forced once a term to confess my sins to the parish priest. I got myself in a terrible pickle trying to think of sins to confess so I made a couple up just to satisfy everyone.


  1. Ha! Don't feel bad. Doesn't everyone do this? I sometimes take 2 or 3 pictures and then have to crop out some eyesore that I didn't even realize was there. Some old bucket or pot or can, that I don't even notice anymore. Take your "good" pictures and don't worry about it. Everyone (well me and you anyway) does it, lol.

  2. VG - very funny post - I can sympathise totally, think I am a bit like this also, I hate weeding too. Most things grow in my garden not by my careful tending but by good chance. Rest assured, we also have junk piles all around the place (except they're not 'junk' but 'useful things that might come in handy'..)the only difference is we're on 10 acres so the piles are spread out somewhat... makes it easier for photo taking!

  3. Are you sure you didn't go to my yard and take photos?? Aside from the mosaic, everything else looks exactly the same. I actually spent the whole day today undoing all 'the junk' and weeds that seemed to have taken over ...I seriously wondered where it had come from....I was feeling rather guilty until I read your wonderful post.
    Very funny and true .

  4. Your weedy, confession photos still look good! We have so many weeds and half-done projects and corners I totally ignore. If my garden looked like photos in some glossy magazine, I'd be out there working my butt off all the bloody time, to have gotten it that way and to keep it that way... no thanks, I have a life!

  5. Ha! Maybe I should go and take a photo of my garden, the toms are all dead/dying, the courgettes are all mildewy and the raspberries are taking over. Yeah, who wants to be perfect anyway?!

  6. Very funny, but i also should confess to a little bit of camera angle photography.

  7. When Phoebe and I were making arrangements to deliver Zorro the rooster, she suggested that she come and pick him up. I said that it would be easier for me to bring him down to her. Need I say why I organised it this way? LOL

  8. There is a reason why pretty much every single photo on my blog is a close up too.....besides even your photos of garden chaos look good.

  9. In that way I am a lazy gardener too, but I have also been away 7 weeks, lazy gardening is nothing compared to no gardening at all, I found the weeds and bush almost crawling inside the windows! :-)


  10. I got half way through reading and thought "I bet she's Catholic". Us non-Catholics don't feel the need to confess. But now you've got us all doing it. I've just finished cropping a few photos and I recognise most of those weeds. We're old friends. Unless you have a team of garden gnomes or are OCD, I think all gardens have ratty bits we don't show the world.
    BTW - those passionfruit vine suckers are almost impossible to get rid of. They're horrible.

  11. Yes, we are all like that to an extent. People think that my garden is perfect, but it isn't - I have some unsightly areas that I never like to advertise, and like you I often choose carefully which photos to publish in order to give the best impression. But I have done a lot in my garden to promote ease of maintenance: for instance, using raised beds allows you to concentrate your efforts solely on the productive area. Also, I replaced my grass with shingle, which needs no maintenance at all (probably not an option when you have kids who want to play in the garden though). My advice is: earmark a small area of your garden to be the showpiece, and put all your effort into that. If all goes well you can expand the "good bit" later on...

  12. Hello!!! Isn't everyone's garden like this???? Mine certainly has it's fair share of 'oh no, you're not seeing that' areas!!! I think we should have a blog award called Untidy But Inspirational Blog Award! What do u think? lol xxx

  13. ah we all have junk and weeds....I can take a load of photos of my yards junk.

  14. I specialise in pots containing dead plants. I think in the back of my mind I hope they'll somehow revive themselves, but strangely they never do.

  15. exactly what a real garden looks like!!

  16. Show and tell! You are a young mum with kids - happy, healthy kids - that is soo much more important than having a weed free backyard. You did do the important thing - put up that hammock so that you had a place to contemplate the next project. :) Reminds me of a little poem I had on the wall when my kids were little "there will be years for cleaning and cooking - for children grow up while we are not looking! "

  17. See everyone does it. But lets face it none of us would blog every day about weeds and rubbish as really it is nice to take pride in the things doing well.

  18. Some weedy sayings aimed to encourage...

    Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them. ~A.A. Milne
    A weed is but an unloved flower. ~Ella Wheeler Wilcox
    A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows. ~Doug Larson
    What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, Fortune of the Republic, 1878

    And my personal favourite...
    A woman's children and her garden both reflect the amount of weeding done during the growing season. ~Author Unknown

  19. Yes I'll hold my hands up too; I am a lazy gardener and I crop photos to cut off the bad bits!

    Although I'd say the cropping of photos was purely for aesthetic reasons and not to hide my laziness. ;)


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