After decades of gardening, I’ve developed a few opinions about what should be included in a garden and what should be avoided in a garden.
Ready? Here goes…
Junipers. I have yet to see a juniper that aged gracefully in a shrub border. I have no junipers in my garden.
Cottonwood Trees. Sure cottonwood trees are fast growing, but they are also weak wooded and in the spring the “cotton” gets all over everything and causes even those with no other allergies to wildly sneeze.
Lombardi Poplar Trees. I wrote last year that when you buy one of these trees, go ahead and get a chain saw, too, because you’ll be cutting it down in short order. Whenever I see some of these trees all rowed up, which is how most people plant them, more than a few seem to be dead or in serious decline.
Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower. No matter what I did, my home grown broccoli always had those little green caterpillars in the flower heads. Even though I soaked the broccoli in salt water to force them out, it seemed that when I cooked the broccoli a little green worm would end up in the cooking water. Gross. And don’t say “Protein!” Cabbage? Buggy. Cauliflower? Also buggy.
Rocks as mulch. Ditto no plastic mulch. If I have to explain this one…then send me an email. I wrote about this last year, and the only thing that has changed since I wrote that post is that I no longer use cypress mulch, now I use hardwood mulch.
English Ivy (Hedera helix). This is under the subcategory, “Not in My Garden, Again”. I think I’ve almost gotten rid of the ivy. A little goes a long way, and you won’t ever control it and contain it like you think you will.
Planters made out of old tires painted white. Maybe if someone painted them green, the tires would be okay because they would blend in. Just kidding on that. I don’t have a place in my garden for old tire planters of any color and I definitely don’t like to see those big spools from the telephone company that people use as outdoor tables.
Plastic Flowers in the wintertime, or anytime. Why do some people who otherwise seem to have nice gardens feel like they need to put fake flowers or fake greenery in window boxes and planters left out in the winter?
Cheap Hoes and any other poorly made gardening tools. I like gardening tools that are well made. It makes the gardening so much easier.
Rabbits, Wolf Spiders, and Snakes. Unfortunately the rabbits can’t read and haven’t figured out that they aren’t welcome in my garden. I’m not sending them the right message when I plant their favorite food (green bean plants) and then leave it uncovered. I also don’t like wolf spiders in my garden. They move fast and seem to jump out just to startle me. And snakes aren’t allowed in my garden, either. I’ve never actually seen a snake in my garden, so maybe I am sending the right “unwelcome” message to them. But just in case, if I am poking around in a place that seems like it would be a perfect home for snakes, I keep a grub hoe at my side for protection.
Finally, the picture above. I try to avoid red and white flower combinations. This was an accident this year. I just wasn’t thinking. I bought a flat of mixed colors of impatiens, and planted all the pretty pink, purple, and white ones in containers on my front porch. All the red ones were planted in the back by the hostas as an afterthought. Red (or as they call it ‘crimson’) and white are the colors of a certain university in Indiana which is the rival of my alma mater, Purdue University, whose colors are black and gold. Honestly, if they saw this color combo in my garden, they might kick my out of the alumni association.
I’m sure there are other “NIMG” items here at May Dreams Gardens, but that’s enough from me. I’m waiting to see other gardeners’ lists. While I wait, I’ll be putting together my Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post for the 15th. You all remembered about GBBD, right? You post what’s blooming in your garden then leave a comment on my post to let us know where to find you. My post should be up late tomorrow to allow the early birds to comment.