As a gardener, this year has hit me hard because I am still recovering from my kidney transplant surgery. I’m doing well, but my doctors aren’t allowing me to play in the dirt. If I do anything else, I have to wear a mask and gloves. Anyway, since I’m not the type of person to indulge in self-pity parties, I took advantage of the recent cloud cover and took down a wild rose that has worked its way into the pomegranate tree in the backyard.
The ongoing California drought has taught me well. Since there seems to be no end to it right now, I still look on the bright side. With the drought and fire season in full force, I am still saving water. I only water my plants, shrubs and trees once a week. If anything dies, that’s all right with me. Now, I’m looking at my home landscaping as an “almost” blank canvas. When I get the doctors’ approval to dig in the dirt, I’m going to incorporate hardscape and drought resistant plants to my yards. Right now, me and Mister Jack have agreed not to have a garden this year. He has allowed the lawn to die.
For me, it’s all about saving water and electricity. Since I grew up on a pear orchard in the Sacramento River Delta, I appreciate what farmers do. Farmers work so hard and take incredible risks because farming relies on the weather. The lack of rain and snow has hit California agriculture hard, and many family farming businesses continue to suffer.
So this is my game plan this year, and I’m sticking to it:
1) No annual vegetable garden.
2) Buy produce from California farmers.
The rose had been ignored for several years. I have a collection of gloves. The thorns on a wild rose are just plain nasty. My worn rose gloves would not do because of the worn leather and holes in the gloves. I ended up using another pair of gloves. You cannot be careful enough when working with these thorns. I can’t walk away from a wild rose without some kind of wound. Although I admire its roses, there are times when you have to bleed for its beauty.
This is what I have left. The summer sun was getting to me, so I quit for the day. Gardening is always a work in progress, and I’d rather be gardening than doing housework. We agreed to take the rose down to ground level. Although Mister Jack offered to move it to another place in the backyard, I have my doubts. Since our yards have changed since we first moved in, we need to change our landscaping to something that suits our needs. Although gardening has always been a part of my life, I’m looking at plants and shrubs that need less water and care.