Garden Confessions

I have to admit something that I am not proud of and this is difficult for me to do.  I am somewhat ashamed but I have the need to confess…I am a nature lover.  I proclaim this in much of what I write. I cannot help but do this since I feel a profound connectedness to nature, I do.  I am a big advocate for the environment. I recycle, I reuse, I hug trees and all that….yes, I am a nature lover….. and I am a neglectful gardener.

For the past year really, I have barely done the bare minimum in my yard and it shows. My sanctuary, as I once called it, is getting ragged at the edges; weeds are popping up, left to seed, the grass has brown patches and the roses are wilty.

Queen Anne’s lace has taken over in the back and choked the life out of one of my favorites: a spectacular white swan coneflower, its creamy whiteness and dark brown centers stood in terrific contrast to the Black-eyed Susan. Now only the Susan remains; her bright yellow petals were being encroached by the fine white flowers of the over-zealous and jealous Queen Anne.  A wild and invasive royal who is apt to take over the whole kingdom. I have been digging out her bundled white roots but no matter how deep I dig there is always more.

Black Eyed Susan

I lament this. This is my fault. I am not only a neglectful gardener, I am a soft-hearted one who tends to let an unknown mystery plant grow and grow until I find, which I usually do that it is an invasive weed.  These science projects, so to speak have run rampant as I have not kept up my previous level of commitment.

The Hot Lips Salvia has grown leggy and the usually sensational Scarlet Daylillies never emerged due a growing shade from a behemoth of a hedge that has taken over the west side of the yard.

The hydrangea need pruning but the fuchsia has never looked better.  I am amazed at the resilience of nature; how it endures. How no matter how much we mere mortals try to have it our way, nature has hers in the end.

That being said, it would be foolish of me to fight what has been going on since before we know-it-all humans came on the scene. Nature has her checks and balances. It is a good system and insead of trying to buck that system I am going to try to mimic it as much as I can.

My plan is to plant mass quantities of White Sweet Asylum; a free-seeding, free-wheeling annual that’s ambitious and attracts a good number of various beneficial insects. The Queen and the Asylum will battle it out and hopefully, with some help from me, the Asylum will win out.

I am coming to the realization that I can use these priciples anywhere. The trick is to go with what already works. I have been reading up on the subject and plan on eventually taking out much of the grass and replacing it with native plants and edibles.

This will take a few seasons but I’m not in a hurry. I will document my progress and keep your posted.

For now I will try to stop cringing when I see the brown patchy grass and the wilted roses…and I’ll try to hold my head up high in the neighborhood. Having an unkempt weedy lawn doesn’t make me a bad person does it?  Hey, I can proudly say that we used less water this summer…conservation is important too!

Have a happy day!


(Note: all the above photos were taken last summer)

Author: Strawberryindigo

A starry-eyed dreamer and adventurer of the imagination. I am a feisty Aspie exploding with colorfully creative energies.

19 thoughts on “Garden Confessions”

  1. Ah, the smell of white Asylum, self-seeding. That should take care of the garden. I grow Poppies, red one. While and red together, I can imagine the combination.


    1. Hello Seeker: That Asylum is a blessing and somewhat of a curse for as you know it self-seeds like crazy so like the crazy person I am, I’m starting to plant purple Asylum and see what happens. I love poppies especially red ones…classic floral beauty at it’s best! 🙂


      1. Purple, pink, blue, yellow, make rainbows. I grow them in small containers from seeds. And I pull them out like weeds, too. Yes, a bouquet is perfect. Happy gardening.


  2. I agree, why fight Nature? Besides, plants that are indigenous is a lot like buying local, you are supporting the local eco-economy.


  3. Sounds like you are just assisting natural selection to me😊. Survival of the fittest at its best. (I have planted many things that did not pass the test of surviving 100+ degree summers and my “benign neglect.” So far noone has threatened to revoke my land conservancy membership.) And I think you should be applauded for rejection of the lawn culture, with it’s emissions from lawn mowers and the herbicides and fertilizers that are needed to have a green swath of lawn. I like the idea of going with what Nature has in mind to begin with, which sounds like a real Nature lover.


  4. We are non lawn waterers too. Our front yard is lush and green only due to the shade it gets from our tall evergreen trees (and the boys summer time water play) but our back yard is brown and dry. Most of my plants look a bit ragged around the edges because I don’t like the idea of pruning a plant too much and I fear I will hurt the plant.


    1. Hi Shoes: You are on to something with the trees and the waterplay…My kids are teens now and don’t do much waterplay in the yard but that should NOT stop me. 😉

      I’m glad you are nice to the plants…and I we are not the only ones with a brown lawn, thanks.


  5. I think you have the right idea. My husband has been encouraging me for years to go with what grows here naturally. Even to the point of seeding wildflowers instead of planting a “real” garden.


  6. Oh Nancy, I hear you! My yard tends to get by with benign neglect. Seems like there are always more exciting things to do than be out there pulling weeks and fighting snails that just come back all the more determined. I think there’s nothing quite so wasteful as a green manicured lawn. All that water and mowing and (gasp) chemicals!


    1. You are so right Gunta… Those weeds are tougher than me and there are more fun things to do…perhaps I’ll join a French motorcycle gang and tour our beautiful coastlines. 😉
      You mention chemicals. I hate them. My neighbor sprays constantly. I may write about it.


  7. LOL! So you have a plan… it was intentional neglect? 😉 My front garden has never been tamed since we moved here – brambles and weeds everywhere. But the occasional plant has survived, and I’ve learned what’s resilient enough for my garden without water or weeding!


    1. You are so smart Cathy! 🙂 I am aiming for more of a natural look (aka less work) My neglect was sort of on purpose… I have been spending my free on time writing now when I used to spend it working outside. I need to find a healthy balance I suppose.


        1. There’s this wonderful scene from Pride and Prejudice the movie with Colin Firth playing the role of Darcy, where his Aunt refers to a “prettyish sort of wilderness area” Anyway that came to mind as I read your post today. See you have a prettyish sort of wilderness in your yard, who knew? 🙂 Penny


        2. I would love that!!! I have always wanted a huge greenhouse that I could sit in with a big lemon tree in the middle. I would adore the lavender and roses but no Anne…Ding, Dong, the queen is dead, The Queen Anne’s Lace is dead. 😉



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