Posted on Jul 21, 2015 12:33 PM
It's been too long to pick up where I left off and how does one explain being invisible for the first half of 2015 anyway? It has been a strange and surprisingly eventful year; the kind of year that usually challenges a gardener to her limit.
It started with a heart attack followed days later by cardiac arrest. The only unusual thing about that is that it was the meds for the heart attack that caused the arrest. Talk about a mess, I was that, for most of the early part of the year. Still am.
And then once things settled down somewhat, Spring came and with it came more rain than anybody ever expected. Everything greened up and things started blooming and I couldn't get out there and do a thing about the weeds. The irises however were exceptionally beautiful. I could only sit back and enjoy the show.
The irises were followed by daylilies, such happy blooms you'd think I spent the entire Spring out dropping compost and alfalfa pellets and mulching and dividing as I wanted to do, but the daylilies were just as happy without me.
They kept coming, those old daylilies did, without any help from me. Some of them have been here for 40 years or more, a few of them newer, but all of them as beautiful as ever, never showing their age as their caretaker does.
Last Fall, before the heart event reared its ugly head, I painted a logo for Bill Kurek who has Caladium Bulbs 4 Less in Lake Placid, Florida. As a result and out of the kindness of his heart, Bill sent me a box filled to the brim with mixed Caladiums (Caladia for those Latin lovers). I had forgotten, to tell you the truth, what with all the hoopla surrounding the unexpected health issues, until the day in May when the box arrived.
I had been unable to dig holes, couldn't play in the dirt and though I did yank a weed or two, cardio rehab and doctor's orders prevented this gardener from doing very much gardening. What would I do with what must have been hundreds of bulbs? Remember those light bulbs that used to appear above heads in old comic strips? Let me tell you, I had a light bulb moment.
I hadn't planted my usual annuals, no petunias, nothing decorated my doorsteps or my deck, nor did a single geranium grace my walkway. But I had all those empty pots and bags of leftover potting soil and compost from last year. I had also saved bags of used soil when I unpotted last year's annuals. It took a few days to rinse out the pots, fill them with mixed soils and compost and to plant the Caladium bulbs, but I got it done with no stress and hardly any lifting at all. I did a lot of pushing and pulling but I hardly lifted a thing. I'm very good at following rules when I've been through months of unexpected health upheavals.
Now that my spring and summer blooms are fading fast, at a time when I thought I'd have few blooms and less color, I have the most glorious Caladiums I have ever seen! Amazing color, front yard, back deck, beneath trees along the driveway, it is a Caladium show for sure!
These Caladiums just keep growing, filling all the empty spots where petunias and impatiens and geraniums, begonias, delphiniums and even my usual sweet potato vines used to be. It is an unending parade of unexpected color.
I don't think I've ever had a more beautiful summer at a time when I needed it most. And they just keep right on growing! Incredibly more beautiful every day. Thank you, Bill!