Friday, April 15, 2011

Friday Fun!

First things first. Master's project has been successfully defended!!! I am now finished with my master's degree. WooHoo! Now on to more important things. Because I believe that every once in a while you need to stop and refill your writing well, I'm going to do something a little different on Fridays (at least through the summer). Drum roll please....Announcing Friday's in the Garden.


A tiger swallow tail (AKA The King Butterfly according to my son) stops by for lunch. You can't go wrong with butterfly bushes (Buddleia). I've had this one for six years. It was transplanted from my mother-in-law's house.


Ahem. It was much more impressive in my mind. Confetti. Fireworks. Balloons. Some cake...

Anyway, some of you may know that I write for Kentucky Gardener. One of my favorite things to do is work in the garden. Don't let this scare you. For most of my life I had a black thumb. Everything died around me. Then we bought our first house and I started gardening. Everything still died. Really. It was like the Black Death for plants. Horrible.

But slowly, I got better. (I was also smart enough to begin gardening in the back yard where no one could witness the destruction.) I learned if the little label on the plant says "full sun", don't plant it under the shade-dense canopy of an oak tree. I know, seems simple but like I said, I had a Black Thumb. I kept at it, and soon my plants started thriving. Eventually, I took courses to become a Master Gardener.

Since I'm a writer, it seemed only natural to combine writing and gardening, which is how I came to write for Kentucky Gardener. (In fact, if you hurry I have one of the cover stories for the April edition. On newsstands now!) Which brings us to today. I truly believe that to be a better writer, sometimes you have to step back from your work and do something else that refills your soul. For me, that's gardening.

Two days ago, my oldest daughter asked why I liked gardening so much. That was easy enough to answer. Watching my flowers bloom makes me happy. That's all. It just makes me happy.

So, on Fridays I'm going to offer garden tips. If you have questions about gardening, post a comment and I'll do my best to answer. Since this post is already long enough, today's gardening tip is simple. Try it. In the beginning you might have a black thumb, but trust me it will get better.

Gardening is not just about growing plants, but it's also about cultivating patience and growing joy. There's something about sitting back in April and watching bulbs bloom that you planted in November. Start small. Pick a spot in the back yard if you don't want your neighbors to witness your trials and tribulations. But just try it. I don't think you'll be sorry.



An ant crawls along hydrangea petals. This one was also transplanted from my mother-in-law's house.

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