Please . . . stop helping me

The Herb LadyUncategorized0 Comments

Herbs, Hyssop

When I moved from a house with a yard to a townhouse with a tiny outdoor space, I knew that I was going to have to make some gardening adjustments. Three years on, I have finally found the formula for success: limit the number and size of the perennials and plant different annuals every year to provide the variety that I crave.

The first year was my biggest success. I obtained permission from the HOA to remove the ugly, mismatched shrubs in front of my home and replaced them with flowers and herbs which put on a spectacular display all summer. I displayed the white flags I was given to alert the professional landscapers that maintain the grounds that my garden was “no touch”, that I would maintain it.

Bees and butterflies buzzed around. Goldfinches feasted on the Echinacea seeds. The most exciting moment for me was when I looked out of my kitchen window and saw a hummingbird sipping nectar from my zinnias.

The neighbors all oohed and ahhed. Even the landscapers took notice.

The second year was a near disaster. The landscapers had decided to “help” me by adjusting the sprinklers so that they watered my garden as well as the lawns. The problem was that the water came out with such force that it flattened everything in its path. Since the sprinklers usually run in the mornings before I left for work, it took me a while to figure why my flowers and herbs were growing horizontally instead of vertically.

This spring, I was fortunate to be home when the sprinklers were being tested so I was able to ask the landscapers to re-adjust the sprinkler head so that it watered only the lawn. I explained about the water pressure knocking over my plants and thanked them profusely for their efforts but . . .

Please . . . stop helping me.

This year is going to be a total disaster. Other than a few scraggly perennials, there is almost nothing left in my garden thanks to the “help” I have received from the landscapers. In the very early spring, They used their leafblowers to rid my garden of winter debris along with almost all of my seeds. This was followed by the weed-whackers. They mowed and edged as usual and then ran their weed-whackers through my garden cutting down all of the nasty “weeds” that were coming up. Weeds that were also known as my perennials. I have to admit that herbs do look a lot like weeds, but . . .

Please . . . stop helping me.

The final blow fell when the mulch was installed. Despite my “no touch” flags, two inches of mulch was installed in my garden burying all the tiny seedlings (I both wintersow and direct sow). I contacted the property management office and asked that the landscapers remove the mulch using leaf blowers. They used rakes instead and raked out most of my plants in addition to the mulch.

Please . . . stop helping me.

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