the little winter lull


a corner of the garden

“I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape.  Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show.”  ~Andrew Wyeth

As I’ve mentioned before, the last few weeks the garden has been on what I call “autopilot”. It’s the little lull between fall (when the garden bounces back big time from the rainy, dreary, hot summers and there’s TONS to do) and spring (when it starts a new growing cycle and there’s TONS to do).

Being a swimmer, I have ALWAYS been super-conscious of weather (especially storms). But that was sort of a summer activity. It’s always a great day every fall when I can finally leave my phone inside when I go out to the pool- I don’t need it to track the radar for dangerous weather while I swim. But since I started gardening, I have been very attuned to the weather in ALL the seasons. And December can be dreary- lots of cloudy days, some rain. The air temperature is cooler, which is nice for me *and* the plants, but because it’s not that sunny (not nice for me *or* the plants), not too much growing happens. Things just seem to maintain themselves. I water every few days, prune here and there, pinch off spent leaves and blossoms, sweep, and mist (water) for pests, but other than that, the garden is doing its own thing.

Some of the plants are growing nicely (tomatoes and other veggies) and some have just slowed to a crawl (sunflowers). The nasturtiums are growing like crazy, which makes me happy. I can’t wait for them to bloom. The passiflora are growing but not really blooming anymore. I’m hoping that they pick back up again before spring.

Other than that, my garden is sort of a full house with self-sufficient guests. I enjoy it a lot while I am outside hanging out and swimming, but I don’t feel super involved in it at the moment. This is actually okay with me because there’s a lot of other things going on with holiday preparation. Instead of being bummed out about the lack of things to do back there, I’m taking the opportunity to use that hour I would normally spend gardening for other things. It feels strange, though… not having that daily interaction that happens when I garden.

As much as I miss gardening, I think the little lizards who live among my plants are very happy I’m not back there as much, poking around. They are out constantly now.

So I guess right now it’s a little quiet in the life of a container gardener.

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