Gardening: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

 I had my niece say recently that she really wanted a beautiful flower garden, but she wanted somebody else to do all the work. She  just wanted to enjoy it. Wise woman to realize that gardens don't just appear.

Often people see a vegetable garden right as plants are coming up or right after the weeds have been pulled or right after it has been watered and smelling of fresh dill and basil and think, "I can do this. I want a vegetable garden."  That is the good part of  vegetable gardening.They may not realize that vegetables require a lot of work. Today JEJ fluffed up the soil and planted more seeds. The cats decided to turn it into a litter box. That is the ugly part of gardening! When for whatever reason the strawberries decided to only produce cute, tiny berries illustrates is the bad part of gardening. Vegetable gardens are unpredictable. Vegetable gardens are also rewarding. As we bit into our first zucchini and tomato today, it was pure bliss. We have small grapes now as you can see above. Yay!
People are very kind to me on Facebook and here on my blog with compliments about my flower photos. That is one of the good parts of flower gardening. There is usually something in one of the gardens blooming beautifully when I take out the camera. At the same time there is tall grass between dying leaves on spring perennials that are spent. I don't do sweeping photos that show dead spots, mint gone wild, or yellowing leaves. That is the bad part of flower gardening. In a few weeks comes the time I dread in the growing season. In mid-August the air gets dry, the temperatures rise, and it takes all the energy we can muster to keep flowers alive. That is the ugly part of flower gardening.

To me it is worth it. Now that I don't fuss about every single weed or obsess over geraniums that need deadheading, I enjoy the process of gardening so much more. Every day there will be a good surprise in some part of the yard. Every day there will also be a perfect blooming lily that a dog knocked over while running out to greet JEJ. That happens too. I don't want to remind my husband of the numerous times I have gotten carried away with the snippers and snipped something that he had babied along. That happens also. That is bad and ugly!

If you decide to garden, start small. Try some container flowers or tomatoes. That is a fun way to start working with colors and textures. This is a new garden we started in tubs this spring in the island in the driveway. We built the gardens around our place one part at a time. Some has worked, some has certainly not. The white garden was a disaster. The red garden is working. It is all in the process!


  1. Your blog is beautiful! I love the summery theme --- and all the flowers.

  2. Your garden is lovely - I can attest to that personally! I'll have to re-read your blog when I get home after a long trip to find the heat has turned the leaves to dust and nothing is blooming but sunflowers (most of which need deadheading). And I will have to look at pictures to remind how pretty the garden was in June and July. Thanks for reminding us that good things come from hard work!

  3. Beautiful photos and wise and true words. Great post!

  4. I love it all even the weeding but its simply too hot to worry about it .sk lovely

  5. You do it well! It all looks gorgeous and loved!


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