Opinion

HELEN LANG: Gardening is no chore

I finally got to a nursery, a large one, and was almost overwhelmed by the sight of so many beautiful flowers, some in large pots, or baskets and lots in small containers that are, I believe called punits. I got some white Boccopa, a few purple petunias and ended up with one large tomato plant — Big Beef.

I had missed the three single smaller plants I had hoped to plant together ... too late, unfortunately, but the one plant is probably enough. Other years I have always ended up with way too many tomatoes and probably would have this year as well, if they had been available.

While there, I bought a lovely hanging basket for the daughter who lives near Kamloops. She left for home this morning, after watering the basket well. It will be a long hot drive. Another daughter is due to arrive soon, so this is a busy place.

It’s the meals that are a problem for dear old Mum (me). I do the cooking and  leave the clean-up to the young. It’s really nice to have them around although I usually end my day just after eight o’clock, sneaking off to bed to read and relax, while they spend half the night chatting.

The nursery also provided me with several osteospermum (African daisies) which I love. These are white with a wide purple band around each petal, quite lovely ... lots of buds on each plant too, which means a longer blooming period.

It makes sense to get plants with very few blooms (so you know what their colour is) but lots and lots of buds to provide many flowers during the summer.

I love to go to nurseries but they are full of the most glorious temptations. It is a dangerous place unless you are wealthy and have someone else to help with the planting, the watering, weeding, fertilizing and dead-heading. Just thinking about it makes me tired and I love gardening.

Pity the poor souls who find gardening a chore!

 

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 30 years.

 

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