can we all just get along?

So the woman down the street says this damn rabbit, have you got rabbit problems too, it’s a complete nuisance, look what it did to the bark of this tiny sapling over winter, it was just planted in the Fall, can you imagine?

I ask does she mean can I imagine being clever enough to fend off starvation by finding a tender sapling to eat amongst all the concrete…

She doesn’t answer, continues, tells me that’s not all, now it’s after the just planted snapdragons.

I say aren’t you supposed to wait until the 24th?

She says, her lovely display of varying heights and colours, all planned and perfectly arranged, which would have filled out to become a striking focal point beside the goldfish pond, is ruined. She points at holes where clumps should be, makes fists and says this can’t go on, something must be done! She looks around the yard, helplessly, hopefully (yearning for a rabbit sheriff to stroll by with bunny handcuffs?).

I suggest we stop building subdivisions where woodland used to be, we’re confusing the wildlife, we’re in their backyard not the other way around. In fact, I say, they’re pretty reasonable about sharing it with us, wouldn’t you agree—notice how they don’t eat all the snapdragons…

A lovely clump of sorrel mysteriously disappears in April—probably makes a good lunch for someone.

(Excuse me, is that a bit of sorrel in your teeth?)

By May—before I even have a chance to die of starvation—it grows back.

And so becomes another good lunch.

Plenty to go round. No need for pawcuffs.

lumbricidae-ish milestone

I recently touched a worm for the first time. On purpose I mean. I touched it very very lightly and with just the very tip of my index finger for possibly one millionth of a millisecond, then jumped back a couple of metres. It was an oddly cavalier thing to do given that they’ve been making my toes curl in a bad way since I was a kid walking to school on rainy mornings, dodging what seemed like hundreds wriggling all over the sidewalk. (And please don’t even mention Danny something who used to scoop them out of the sewer near the back entrance and dangle them in your face as you walked by.) 

My fear of worms never stopped me working in the garden of course—I just did it in my own way—weed weed EEK!, dig plant dig ICK! (Making Peter shake his head and say things like: don’t you think it’s a little weird for someone who spends as much time as you do mucking about in dirt to be afraid of worms?) 

He obviously didn’t know Danny something. 

Still, I suppose it was a little weird to be eeking my way through three seasons. Maybe the shame finally sunk in.  

So I’ve touched one.  And now they don’t scare me one bit.  Well, less.

That doesn’t mean I’m going to touch another one on purpose. Nor does it mean I’m going to challenge myself by picking one up. No no no. There will be no pictures of me holding any member of the family lumbricidae like a prize. I’m just happy the screaming is over, and my toes can finally un-cramp. 

Although if I find an unusually long and fattish specimen (they can, theoretically, get to 3 metres), I really can’t guarantee anything… 

to each their own...

spring vs summer

Without question—Spring—best time of year in the garden. Better than summer when everything’s clamouring and shouting, a riot of colour, a blur, mere background— like a gallery full of exquisite art—impressive as a collection, but impossible to give each item the attention it deserves.

Right now the garden is quiet, still stretching, yawning, relaxed. A humble place where the most excitement is every day another bit of green has replaced mud, a bloom has opened pink or blue or white, and that clump of leaves—still undistinguishable—is either cardinal flower or coreopsis. Does it really matter?

It’s excitement enough.

Oh sure, god bless summer and all that, but by July there’s so much to see I think we actually see less—whereas right now, and for a while longer, it’s possible to see everything…

Last night’s rain on this morning’s lupin and lady’s mantle.