I’m mad at my yard.
We redid the front yard a few years ago—with a few wins, a few losses—but this year a lot of the stuff is really looking rotten. Whatever do you mean? Is that what you’re asking? I’m sure it is, because I know y’all care sooo much about my yard.
Here’s one of my favorite plants we put in, Euphorbia Tiny Tim, because it’s unique and quite beautiful. Here’s how it looked about a year ago:
That’s an extreme close-up. Cool, huh? Here’s how it looks right now:
Yup. All that cool-lookin’ red and pincer-y stuff is dead dead dead, and I’m pissed pissed pissed.
Bellflowers: so pretty. Last year they looked like this:
…and now they look like this:
The Sea Thrifts, so cheery!
But this year they make me grouchy-faced:
This one’s even worse:
Note the Bellflowers on the right above—that particular batch is still growing well this year. In fact, it’s all bunched up with the Black-eyed Susans, which you would think would make them each grow less full, but they’re both looking quite good. We thinned the Susans down this year and they’re doing alright…
…except for the bunch we transplanted to the side yard:
Nothing seems to do well over in the side yard, even though it gets plenty of sun. For two years, our Daphne has bloomed for a week and then dropped its flowers. The Periwinkle doesn’t spread nearly as fast as in other parts of the yard. Even arborvitae has died there, and DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD IT IS TO KILL ARBORVITAE??? I think the soil is just full of poison or somethin’. So frustrating. We’ve lost a LOT of plants over yonder. (Yonder = side yard. Duh.)
Okay, it’s not a complete disappointment. The Asiatic lilies are quite pretty, as long as the neighbor kids can keep from running over them. We planted them closer to the sidewalk than we should have. The boxwoods are perfect, the dogwood is doing well, the hebes are so-so.
And behind the lilies, growing around the path stones, you can see the little Blue Star Creepers, which are doing better this year than ever. Of course, we don’t really give a crap about the Blue Star Creepers. Isn’t that the way it always goes?
On our front porch we have the Dusty Miller that’s on its third year. Annual, my butt. We cut it and cut it, and it just keeps growing.
This mini-rant all started because we just noticed the aspen in the backyard is getting the ugly, sticky fungus-y thing it’s gotten every year since we planted it. Victor wants to cut down the aspen. Victor is crazy. I will not cut down that tree. I Googled “black sticky aspen” and found that our tree either has Marssonina Blight or Septoria (you probably knew that, right?)—whatever it is, there’s no fix. It’s fungus and will keep coming back and that’s that and that makes me angry. It makes me want to kill things, but just about everything I see is already dead. Grrr.
For you gardener folk, is it possible for plants to have an “off” year? Is that why everything in my yard is pissing me off? Or did I anger the gods somehow? Is there anything I can do to make it all pretty again? I’m totally open to voodoo…