Tell me, tell me true have you ever tried to dig a perennial flower garden in soil comprised of peanut stone and blog iron formed 11 million years ago, just waiting for a senior citizen to come along and plant something in it? You know, a lot of little peanut pieces, and mixed in the red soil just to make it more fun are plenty of rocks – big ones.
When I was a wee Ohio lass years ago it was a challenge to fight with this ornery New Jersey soil. The Midwesterner in me was not going to let any East Coast ground beat me. You guessed right, the peanut stone won. I returned to the house and raised my children. I let nature be my Gardner. The lilies reproduced, azaleas grew big and colorful, birds planted berries, the ivy climbed beneath the mountain laurel and the natural habitat of dogwoods multiplied all while I was enjoying my life and never lifted a finger.
Well, that was the smart someone I used to know. This over-fifty woman must have lost her marbles and memory to think she can still mine peanut stone.
So today when I returned from Lowes with a trunk load of perennials I had the good intentions of planting and re-energizing my flower garden near the front gate. But it only took the first ‘clink’ as my shovel bit into the impenetrable ground to wake up my memory- sort of a version of shovel shock therapy. I remembered why I have a natural landscape.
Faced with the dilemma of ‘what next’ and not one to waste a trip to Lowes (or my money), I started to dig half-holes, or about as much as the concrete ground would give me, all over the garden. It looked like a drunken gopher had been at work. In went the daisies, coneflowers and tall grasses. Half in and half out in a half-planted-‘half-arshed’ way. Topped off by a bag of potting soil and a prayer of forgiveness to these poor perennials, I dragged the hose and gave them a well deserved drink. Please survive sweet things but I’ve got to run. See you tomorrow.
Slipping off my garden gloves I headed back up the beach stone path to the house defeated by my 11 million year old peanut stone soil. The next drink will be for me. Defeated by a bunch of dirt!
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