Greengirls Helen Yarmoska, Nicole Hvidsten, Martha Buns, Connie Nelson, Kim Palmer and Mary Jane Smetanka are dishin' the dirt from the back-yard garden and beyond. Whether you're a greenthumb or greenhorn, they're eager to learn from your mishaps, mistakes - and most importantly, your sweet successes - all growing season long.
Twenty-some years ago when I planted my asparagus patch, there was a tiny little bush growing in the area that looked interesting. I thought it was a nice backdrop, so I let it go. Eventually, it got bigger and my husband trimmed it as topiary and it lived well. I was a novice gardener; I didn’t know what it was – and I didn’t care. It had berries, the leaves were nice and it took abuse.
Well, education stepped in and I found out that it was a buckthorn. So I figured I better do something about this. The first two years I did my best to pull off all the berries so the invasive plant would not be spread by birds. Then there was a big “anti-buckthorn” thing going on in my city and I figured as a past Garden Council President, I better yank the tree.
By this time, it was about 8 feet tall so it required a chainsaw and big shovel. I didn’t want to disturb my asparagus patch too much so I judiciously trimmed roots.
Go figure, the plant kept coming up. So I hand painted an aggressive weed killer on the leaves of the upcoming buckthorn shoots. Fast forward, the roots rotted, the area was flat, but something else ‘woody’ was growing. I let it go. The area needed a little something besides a flat asparagus patch all Winter and Spring.
Something tree-like appeared. It seemed to have a fruit-like bark, a nice spring bloom and so we twisted
I look in my books, what the…. Low and behold, this is a plum tree. So, adventurous as I am -- I pop one of these fruits in my mouth. Delicious!
Now this spring I’m enjoying the multitude of flowers and imagine each of those smooth green walnuts as a plum ready for the breakfast table!
Have you ever had a surprise treat in your garden? Flowers, fruits, animals?
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