Whew! There’s nothing like working off holiday food stuffs by digging yourself out of the New Year snow drifts brought to us annually by the comedy team at Mother Nature. Is that a run-on sentence? Who cares? I’m still trying to get my breath back and think straight after tossing chunks of concrete disguised as snow off my driveway. Actually, half of my driveway is now a legal road. So, it’s about a tenth of a mile long. Get my drift?
The end of the year has a way of highlighting all of our flaws and fears. You know, like, ‘I need to lose about 20 pounds!’ and ‘I really need to get to the gym more often’ and ‘I hope I can get in shape for gardening next spring.’ Yeah, the usual backsliding whining about stuff we should be doing on a regular basis, but, find a myriad of excuses not to do. We really ought to be resolving to have more actual resolve in the new year. So, even though I really loathe those seasonally correct garden columns about what we’re all going to resolve to do next year, I took a look to see what I lectured our dear readers to do last year.
Make a compost heap. Heck, I didn’t even have time to turn mine, let alone use it! I just kept piling on the waste. True compost takes time. It needs to age. Keep telling yourself that and you can live with it till spring.
Keep a garden journal. That’s an easy one. ‘Get my husband to do more weeding, raise the lawn mower higher, get him a nice luxury style kneeling pad.’ I kept my journal up to snuff with little or no problems.
Take photos of the garden all year long. Hmm. I didn’t do so well on that one. It’s kind of hard to take pictures in a driving rain in June, July, and August. Did we actually have a gardening season this year?
Buy Alaska Grown nursery plants. Did you see those dead hanging baskets at the big boxes last May? Do you ever see plants like that at your neighborhood nursery? Of course not! Can you ask intelligent questions and get an intelligent answer from your local nursery? Do their plants usually survive the winter better than those beaters you buy at Mall Mart? Just say ‘Yes!’ and we’ll let you off the hook.
I guess I have to keep these on my list of New Year’s resolutions for 2007 again. But, I know I’ll be encouraging gardeners to add the following resolutions as well:
Get in better physical shape! Boy, is your back ever your friend? You betcha! If you can’t see your belt buckle or your knees when you look south, you will pay dearly come spring. Those muscles that hold up your back are holding up that front end as well. Extra weight puts a lot of stress on your knees, hips, and lower back and increases the risk of osteoarthritis while wearing away the cartilage that protects these joints. So, get those boots on and get out the door and walk, talk, walk, and shovel snow or something. Join a gym if you can because it’s awful hard to fake a workout while others are watching! Nobody goes to the gym and quits after fifteen minutes. So, work out with a buddy or a group of friends. Your gardening will be less of a chore and you’ll be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor without laboring to bend over. You’ll live longer and be happier as well. I know my back feels a lot better when I work out regularly. Now, if I could just stop eating. . . .
Go to the Alaska Botanical Gardens Fair in June. You’ll see lots’ of folks from the Valley there and you’ll have a good time and see beautiful plants, art, hear great music, eat, buy plants, eat, walk through the woods, eat. (Is it lunch time yet?)
Go to the Blue Poppy Garden Walk, Les Brake’s Coyote Garden Tour, and the 3rd annual Art and Garden Festival at the fair grounds in July. Keep an eye out for the garden calendars or check our blog for the dates on these Valley fairs. There are so many beautiful plants, art, and things to eat at these events that you won’t want to miss them!
So, are we resolved enough for next year? I for one, resolve to eat lunch now and shovel snow later. Happy New Year!