Sunday, January 01, 2006

A Good Start to the New Year

What better way to start the New Year than in the garden? It was one of those rare days when the temperature is unseasonably warm, the mosquitoes are gone for the winter, and it was quiet. No leaf blowers, no screaming neighbor's children - you could hear yourself think and take time to listen to the birds. The quiet was punctuated by occasional leftover fireworks in the distance.

There is never a lack of things to do in the garden. A perfect day beckons you and you move easily from one thing to the next. Each chore, if they can even be called chores, leads you to the next. A patch of tiny 1" mondo grass was being intimidated by an approaching bed of liriope. The liriope removed was perfect to stem the erosion near a coral bark maple. The perennial bed near the maple needed to be edged and the grass removed was just the thing to fill a bare spot near the vegetable garden. Ah, the vegetable garden. The mulch needed some rearranging and some weeds needed to be pulled. On the way to the compost pile with the weeds, I walked the steps down to the moss garden and found they needed to be swept to remove the fallen leaves and reveal the beautiful patterns of the stone. While sweeping the steps, I discovered that the dry creek bed was also full of leaves and, with rain approaching, it too needed to be swept. And so it goes in the garden.

My alpha cat circled the work area, talking once in awhile, exploring the garden, leaping on imaginaries in grass beds. Can this actually be called "working" in the garden? When the cold returns, as it certainly will, my head will be filled with plans for next year's garden. The catalogs are already piling up. A cold winter's day, not so fine as this one, will find me inside, making lists and plans for more wonderful days working in the garden.