In Defense of Procrastination: A Guest Post

Garden fairies here!

We are garden fairies and so we never do anything when we are supposed to do it. We procrastinate.  In fact, we are procrastinating right now and doing a mighty find job of it.  After all, what's the big rush all about? We are garden fairies, we need to think about what that really means because "rush" isn't really part of our vocabulary.

We do feel like there are some people who shall remain nameless namely Carol here at May Dreams Gardens who think that procrastination is a sign of weakness, unless of course she is the one doing the procrastinating.  Then she calls it pondering, weighing her options, taking care of other business, ruminating. Well, we are garden fairies so we call a spade a spade and a hoe a hoe and we know what procrastination looks like and that's just what she does sometimes.

In fact, Carol procrastinated all the way until June 17th this summer before she sowed seeds for zinnias and marigolds.

We are garden fairies and we were a little bit worried that she wasn't going to sow them at all and we were going to have to resort to drastic measures the likes of which we can not tell you because we are garden fairies and we have secrets.  We are good keepers of secrets, too.

Anyway, where were we?  Oh, right.  Finally, right before we put "Operation Make Her Sow Those Seeds" into action, Carol sowed seeds for zinnias and marigolds on June 17th. We actually were going to do something earlier but we were, well, procrastinating. But we are garden fairies so don't get all "gasp, you wouldn't do that" on us. We would, eventually.

Anyway, the zinnia seeds germinated, the seedlings came up, and Carol did a good job of thinning them out. Now, nearly four months later, she has the most beautiful stand of zinnias that we garden fairies have ever seen.

Look at this one!

This one is so nice that we would like to give it to a little garden fairy we call Queen Atakia which is short for "all the answers, knows it all". Though she is the nicest garden fairy, she always pipes up with an answer whenever there is a question.  Her real name is Fernleaf Gravelgarden. Nice as can be.  Yes, she knows we call her Queen Atakia sometimes. She doesn't mind. She laughs about it, too.

Anyway, these zinnias are still blooming and growing in mid-October and there is not even a hint of that awful powdery mildew on any of the leaves. This is nearly unheard of.

Well, we are garden fairies so we aren't sure why this is, but we wonder if it is because Carol planted these a full month later than she normally does.  Or was it the weather? Or were these special zinnias?   We aren't sure, even Queen Atakia doesn't have a definitive answer.  But we are garden fairies and we love these zinnias and plan to enjoy them for as long as they last this season. 

We may even come up with a scheme to make sure Carol sows her zinnia seeds late next year, too.

We are garden fairies, we can do that!

Submitted by Thorn Goblinfly,
Chief Scribe for the Garden Fairies at May Dreams Gardens


  1. That procrastination really paid off, yielding such vibrant blooms when they're needed most. Sadly, the Zinnias here at Squirrelhaven are only just now considering forming buds. We shall see if any blooms are forthcoming.

  2. A long time ago I read that sowing zinnia seeds late -- mid June -- reduced or eliminated mildew on the plants. That has certainly been my experience, just like yours.

  3. Or maybe 2 sowings next year for an experiment?

  4. My guess is the drought this year is yielding your perfectly petaled zinnias this year :-) At least the drought has some redeeming factor, right?! And speaking of procrastination, thanks for reminding me that I have procrastinated the sowing of my fall veggie garden. Maybe there is still time. Surely, there is more time. Isn't that the mind-set of every true procrastinator?! Guilty as charged! Wonder if I could borrow the garden fairies for an afternoon and they could do my planting for me...tomorrow.

  5. I wish you had taken a wider angle for the zinnias, but of course your photos are lovely. I just want to see the whole area. Procrastination is my pastime too, and those that needs pruning in dry season to give more flowers come rainy season, still are unattended. So they just do their own pruning, and they when they become very ugly I managed to work on them.

  6. Procrastination = slow gardening - just my kind of gardening style!

  7. I love zinnias, but have not grown them because of the powdery mildew. I will try again next year. I love learning something new.

  8. I have a few that managed to germinate~That full sun issue really gets in the way here! I must remember to keep sowing seeds and see if they germinate better if planted later. gail

  9. According to the perfectly kept records, Zinnias were sown here mid-May. Note to self: next year try mid-June. Yours are gorgeous, Carol and her mighty band of Garden Fairies, without that appalling powerdy mildew. Well done!


    ps. Fernleaf Gravelgarden sounds like a most wonderful fairy!

  10. My dilemma regarding sowing zinnia seeds late (past the middle of May)
    is we don't get as long to enjoy their beautiful blooms before that nasty frost gets them. They can't take it at all. (Unlike Mums that seem to bloom better after frost.)

  11. Gardenfairies - Perhaps Carol wasn't procrastinating. Perhaps this was part of her grand plan!

  12. Thorin, I must confess I've been doing a lot of procrastinating lately. I need to plant bulbs, but there are annuals where the bulbs are supposed to go, and they're looking so good that I can't bear to pull them just yet. The same with cleaning out some of the containers. But please don't tell Carol I am a procrastinator. I'm sure she didn't put off her planting--her beautiful zinnias were planned for the perfect fall show!

  13. The Queen of Procrastination checking in here. Good job, Fairies! Good job, Carol! I really must speak up in Carol's defense (as if she needs one more reason to have procrastinated). We had a very, very wet May and it took until the middle of June for things to dry out enough to plant anything!
    I never really noticed powdery mildew on my zinnias before, but perhaps it's because we live in the wide open prairie farms of northwest Ohio and they get lots of air circulation. We are the home of a very large wind farm, for good reason. My zinnias are blooming beautifully right now, too. They're a welcome sight in the middle of October!

  14. Thorn, my garden fairies live in perpetual dismay over my procrastinatory abilities. They should take a lesson from y'all!

  15. Dear Carol, I would make a very good garden fairy if procrastination is a main characteristic. Have to say, growing zinnias is one of my fortes. I start them indoors from seed. P. x