Monday, October 29, 2012

One Last Chore Before the Storm

Day 241
The Daily DuBrule

Today is my husband's birthday and the one year anniversary of the October snowstorm that caused so much damage in 2011. Ironically, another storm of the century is blowing outside, dubbed Frankenstorm by the weather forecasters. Yesterday I spent a long time bringing things in and tidying up the yard to prepare. Not that you can really prepare for hurricane force winds, but you can try. I put the tomato stakes in their bins in the garage. I brought in all the lanterns and candleholders. The lawn furniture got stored for the winter. Potted plants and all of the halloween decorations-check. By noon I was done but filled with nervous energy. So I proceeded to dig and divide my garden. 

It seemed crazy to do this work the day before Frankenstorm but why not. So many of my plants have been cut down and I could see even more problems that I needed to deal with. A giant yellow yarrow swallowed up by mountain mint was dug up, weeded out, and reset on high ground in my new berm garden. All of the chives were placed in a neat cluster at the front of the now newly liberated, empty bed that is free of gooseneck loosestrife and waiting for the peach tree to be planted after the winds die down. Jerusalem artichokes were harvested, thus thinning the clump to prevent the blueberries and hydrangea tree from being swallowed up. I even climbed inside of a huge forsythia that straddles the property line and carefully removed the bittersweet and wrapped it in a huge tarp, ready to toss in the dumpster later in the week. I didn't realize it was there until the berries turned orange. Horrors! Not that this effort will make much of a difference as the entire back hillside of mine and all of my neighbor's properties is covered with trees engulfed in bittersweet, most of them lying down after last year's snowstorm. But it made me feel good. 

Every time I thought I was done I just kept going. Edging beds, digging up ground ivy, digging out self-sown clumps of bronze fennel that landed in the wrong spot, cutting back peonies and hostas... I just kept wandering around my property with my garden sickle and pruning shears, filling wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow, cleaning up and taking stock of my garden.

The very last thing I did was cut nearly 100 stems of my precious 'Lucie's Pink' mums and bring them in the house. They are in perfect bloom, a few flowers open and many buds on every branch. I couldn't bear the thought of them being shredded by the wind and pummeled by the rain. They now fill my house with cheerful color as I hunker down and ride out this storm.

1 comment:

  1. The most amazing job you conquered from my point of view is the harvesting of Jerusalem Artichokes. Those have become the worst items to keep in check on our farm. It would take weeks of backbreaking effort to make a dent in that job here. I love them in September and October and hate them otherwise. They surround the barn, the pond and will soon take over the world!