FAE AND WITCHES AND GHOSTS - OH MY!
Yeah, it's true. I have an empty patch in my garden. For some people--and I'm talking about gardeners with miraculous green thumbs--an empty patch of garden area is an opportunity. For them deciding what to plant in that patch of brown earth is a snap. I've even heard that gardeners regularly create empty garden patches so they can go through the decision planting stage--on purpose! But for me, not a green thumb person, it's a BIG decision.
I'm a novel writer and so my first instinct is to do some research. The problem here is that there is so much information on gardening that I just can't decide. And my past experience with house plants has unfortunately left me with nothing but bad experiences. Like last year, I tried to grow Black Eyed Susan's from seedlings. I followed the directions on the package. I planted. I watered. I set them in sunlight. But a couple of months later there were no lovely green shoots, just dirt. I should have known. Any house plant I ever had usually died. They'd either crisp up into a dried husk or they'd mold into a weirdly gelatinous mush. And I felt bad for everyone of them.
The only time in my life when I could grow plants was just after the birth of my first child. I don't know whether my vibration changed when I became a mother or if it was just dumb luck. But for awhile there, I could grow plants. But it didn't last. A few years later my plant growing skills vanished once again.
Oh, I've never had a problem with trees or bushes. They seem to like me. I trim them in the spring and let mother nature take care of the rest. They grow and I don't try to mess with that. I have some luck with petunias but again I classify them as a plant that mother nature takes care of. I put them in a pot and stick them outside. I only water them if we haven't had rain for awhile. And miraculously--they bloom!
A couple of years ago we downsized into a smaller home. Our children are grown and we didn't need all the space of a large house. The new house itself was great. But the garden! The lady that lived here before me was an awesome gardener. I inherited many wonderful plants, trees and bushes from her labors outside. A plum tree. Three blueberry bushes. A raspberry patch. A small herb garden with chives that pop up faithfully every year. And two patches to grow random vegetables. She had grown rhubarb, kale and tomatoes. And the thought of taking care of those vegetable patches scared me.
But I boldly put on a brave face and tackled my problems. I planted tomatoes in one patch. They grew. A little. I managed to snag a few nicely shaped balls of the red fruit. I even added them into a few salads for dinner. I also planted mint in the other patch. Now that grew! But too much. I started seeing mint growing a couple of feet away from where I planted it. And it seemed to be choking out the hostas that were planted on either side of it. Again research tells you that mint is an invasive plant but I had no idea how much.
So I called my friend from back home. I actually call her every Friday night just to chat. She is bolder than I am about gardening. Under her direction I learned about herbs. They are easy to grow and handy for cooking. I learned that mulch combats weed growth and helps to prevent a dried out garden bed. And her attitude as a gardener is one I plan on adopting. She says that it's hit and miss. And if she accidentally kills something it's okay because then she learns. When I asked her if she felt bad about accidentally killing a plant she said, "I don't think I have. If I did I don't remember. It couldn't have been too traumatic if I don't remember."
And she's right. I'm totally overthinking this.
But that is how my brain works and it's part of how I'm able to write novels. But I am going to give it a go. I am. And I'll try not to obsess over it too much. I'll try.
But just in case anyone has any ideas for me, the area gets sunlight almost all day and is covered in cedar mulch. It's pictured below. If you want to throw some planting suggestions at me, then I can assure you that me and my obsessive brain thank you very much in advance.
Other than that, keep on keeping on and have a nice day.
Kay Latour -> Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Author of WITCH ON PAROLE series.