The First Yard Work of the Season

The First Real Yard Work of the Season

What a glorious May we are having. Watching the early flowers bloom one after another reminds me how fast the spring and summer slip by. I have made a promise to myself to get out in the yard more often and enjoy every day of this wonderful time of the year. Maybe this has something to do with turning 66. Along with getting that first social security check in two weeks I am more aware of how fast time goes.

Part of this promise to me is to do yard work a little at a time so it does not pile up on me. Although I have been doing a little weeding, yesterday was my first real yard work day. Now, when I say day, it was actually just two hours. Unfortunately, another part of that getting older thing is that I really feel my body suffering from just two hard hours of bending and reaching. Most of my task for yesterday was pruning hydrangeas. We have 9 bushes and I would love more. In fact, I am going to try dividing some. I noticed branches that have rooted. I think I can cut them off from the source, leave them in the ground, and see how they do for a while before I try moving them.
I have two kinds of Hydrangeas. I have the old fashioned ones that bloom on last year’s growth. I cut away all the dead wood on these but I need to wait until they leaf out so I no what is dead old wood. I also have the newer ones that bloom longer and they also need to have a lot of dead wood pruned away but this dead wood may not go all the way to the ground. I need to start at the top of the branch and follow down to where I find a leaf. This means running my hands down all the branches unless there are leaves at the very top. I am sure this takes longer than doing it by sight but it is certainly possible for a blind person to do it.
I love hydrangeas. We had them when I was a child. Our yard is full of them because of a wonderful house we borrowed in southern France. We borrowed this house three different times. The house was surrounded by Hydrangeas. Every Year when we returned I added more of the showy plants to our yard. This house also had 6 foot high rosemary hedges and I have never found a way to duplicate those.

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