As the snow falls and temperatures hover between teens and just below freezing, there’s nothing that I need to do in the gardens. Oh, there’s lots I COULD (Should?) be doing to facilitate next year’s success (And this time of year we gardeners never doubt that the coming garden will be a success!) but that’s another post.
Yesterday I spent some time reading other gardening blogs, which is something I don’t have time to do during the actual gardening season. Afterwards, I let my mind ponder what I’d seen and read. What kept coming back to me was this photo from a New Zealander’s garden showing Santa in the flower border, his red suit striking against the brilliant green foliage and a beautiful sunflower blossom.
Sarah O’Neil, author of “Sarah The Gardener” blog, was breathing a big sigh of relief that she’d survived the hectic combination of Christmas with all it’s gatherings, shopping, extra cooking, etc., the deluge of work with planting and harvesting her huge veggie garden, and the children being on winter holiday! Somehow, in my 70 years, my mind had never grasped that exact concept. Oh, I realized that when we have summer, the other side of the world has winter and vice versa, but I never really thought about the consequences! I can’t imagine having to do all the decorating, wrapping, card sending, holiday programs and all the rest simultaneously with getting the garden in order and planted, and dealing with the first harvests!
Just imagine! The two things I love most, that require the most time and energy to do well, happening at the same time! If I’d ever thought of moving to Australia or New Zealand that would stop me. I love the fact that here frost comes and puts an end to the garden chores. Then we put away our tools, bake the fruitcakes so they can mellow, begin the shopping and soon we’re untangling the lights and making eggnog. Here, fortunately, Christmas comes with its glitter and merriment just when we are dreading winter and all the gardening has ended for the year. And then we box up the decorations, carefully storing the lights so that NEXT year they won’t be tangled (but somehow, they always are!) and begin dreaming over the seed catalogs and planning the new garden. Imagine having to deal with Christmas when the beans need canning, the weeds need pulling, and the cukes need pickling!
I am never going to complain about the to-do lists for either Christmas or gardening again! I’m blessed that for me, these two wonderful events are spread far apart, and both happen exactly when I need them. But, hats off to you, Sarah, and to all of those on the other side of the world who are able to accomplish both. I’m immensely glad I don’t have to try!
Do pop over to Sarah, The Gardener at https://gardeningkiwi.wordpress.com. She has a lovely veggie garden and you’ll get some new ideas and just enjoy her vitality. Sarah is also the author of three books: “Play in the Garden,” “Growing Vegetables,” and “The good life.”