Going down the road

  • el
  • pt
  • It was a great day filled with lots of “what-does-it-take” chores. A “what-does-it-take” chore is just what it sounds like, something that needs doing, that can be done in a short time and with little effort, something that’s so obvious and likely so easy that it gets pushed to the bottom of the priority list again and again. Trimming the clematis is a what-does-it-take chore. And what would it take to trim back that mock orange in the south lawn hedge? And cleaning up the peonies in what we laughingly call the “formal garden”… what would it take? It was a day for picking a few dozen daffodils to display around the house, a day for using up that roasted chicken in a pot of home made chicken noodle soup. What would it take to finish resetting the lannonstone wall at the back of the center lawn flower bed? It took more than I had in me, as it happened. There are still 12 humongous stones that need to be dug out and re-set. What would we do without root pressure from weed trees and the annual upset of frost heave? It would all be too easy.

    What would it take to throw tennis balls for the dogs? Call me an enabler. They’ve got a tennis ball habit and I feed it. Didn’t expect the sunshine today. It was a pleasant surprise! What, I asked myself, would it take to get outdoors and use that sunlight?

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    1. brian moffatt
      Posted April 18, 2024 at 9:21 | Permalink

      i don’t know about you but another five or ten degrees (C or F) would be enough to get me outside doing anything remotely resembling a chore. i stood on a corner waiting for a streetcar today and it started snowing. all i could think of was my warm bed. can napping be considered a ‘what-does-it-take’ chore? probably not.

    2. Posted April 18, 2024 at 10:00 | Permalink

      Napping is good. It was in the mid-forties F here today. Practically tropical!

    3. bettyjo
      Posted April 21, 2024 at 9:34 | Permalink

      Here in the Pacific Northwest, we’re in that difficult stage where the afternoon temperatures rise to 70 degrees, prompting all kinds of gardening notions, but nights still frequently drop down into the 20s, reminding us it’s still but mid-April.

      It looks as though 2024 will be good year for water, we’ve had a fairly wet April and the snow pack in the Trinity Alps is excellent. Were it not for the cows, pastures would be knee deep in grass. I got all the onion and broccoli starts out of the
      greenhouse and into the kitchen garden,along with early Japanese turnips and Chinese greens. They’re all nice and cozy under hoops and agriculture fabric. The spuds are in the ground, and fall planted garlic and shallots are thriving. This year husband decided he was tired of losing his fruit harvest to late spring frosts killing all the blossoms. He constructed greenhouses from 2 inch pvc and plastic sheeting over semi-dwarf peach, plum, pear, and early apple trees.

      We also wrapped up the paw paw bushes and kiwi. And so, each morning we unwrap trees, vines and shrubs for bee access, and each evening cover them up
      again. It’s a big hassle. Who knows if it will work. Personally, I’m not caring much about the kiwi, thinking them a losing proposition in this climate, but I surely would like to taste a Paw Paw once before I die. You no doubt recall the song from our childhood – “picking up paw paws put ‘em in your pocket, way down yonder in the pawpaw patch.” I understand that they’re s’pozed to taste like banana custard. We planted these shrubs 10 YEARS AGO! They just started to bloom two years ago. Last year, I actually got them wrapped in Ag fab but removed it two days too early, and a vicious 20 degree night in early May wiped out all the blossoms.

      Just one paw paw. That’s all I ask. Just one to taste. Banana custard fruit. Just one would make it all worth while.