Colleen at In the Garden Online suggested that we should encourage new gardeners by showing them the ugly parts of our gardens.
You know, the parts we carefully edit out of our pictures before posting them on line, or just avoid posting pictures of entirely.
She surmised that new gardeners would be encouraged to know that no gardener, regardless of their experience, hardwork, money or dumb luck has a perfect garden.
And if someone does have perfect garden, they probably do have a lot of money and a lot of help and I'd bet they aren't doing most of the gardening themselves.
For most gardeners, it is about the gardening and we all end up with parts of the garden that please us and surprise us in a good way and make us happy. But there's always a few places...
Let me share some of mine.
Pictured above is what remains of one of my new 'Praying Hands' hostas. While I have blamed the rabbits, I realize this could also be the work of chipmunks. I'm putting cayenne pepper on the other new hostas. I'm leaving this one here because it still has one little leaf, so it will likely recover from this attack.
Here is my overgrown mess of forsythia that rarely bloom that need to go, go, go out of the garden.Look at the grass growing up through the shrubs! It's slovenly at best. I just haven't gotten up the energy to take care of this, but I still hope and plan to get it all torn out by fall so I can plant something else at the entrance to my vegetable garden before the snow flies.
Oh, and my heavens the plants on the garage side of my house are the worst they've ever been.
I just today gave them some extra water. This area is going to need some serious attention this fall to get it back in shape, and last year I thought it looked pretty decent. Not great, but decent. I guess it is time to clean up the hodge podge of plants I put there ten years ago and plant something with a bit more of a plan. Even my youngest sister commented on it the other day when she came by. She didn't say "this area looks terrible", she just made a comment about me not getting over to that side of the house much or something like that.
Actually, I think seeing this mess did make her feel a bit better about her own gardens. She's had her struggles with weeds and invasive perennials out of control, but her gardens look the best they've ever looked this year, and certainly look better than this picture.
Finally, I should really know better than to just leave junk by the compost bins.
It will just attract more junk! There should be a better place to store these stakes and fencing and the compost sieve. And it wouldn't take me but a minute to get behind those bins and pull those tall weeds out. Honestly, this makes my garden look junky. I'm going to take care of it tomorrow morning, I promise.
I'll stop there as I don't want to give anyone the impression that May Dreams Gardens is some kind of junk pit of a garden. I have nice gardens, too. In fact, this past Saturday, I finally re-mulched my big perennial bed and it now looks better than it has looked in several years.
I hope in some strange way this has encouraged at least one new gardener to know that a garden isn't going to be perfect 'day one'. Gardening is a process. And sometimes it is just plain hard work, but the results are absolutely worth it when you taste your very own home grown tomato, or see a new rose with the morning dew still on it, or hear the birds sing and see the butterflies flutter from flower to flower.
Now experienced gardeners, go see Colleen's post with more info on how to participate with your own ugly garden pictures!