When the grass hasn't been mowed, greedy bugs are eating the shrubs, and the weeds are taking over the garden, it's important to only focus on the sunflowers, right? They turn their faces east, toward the morning sun, so they greet me as I pull into my driveway. Such cheerful faces are nice to come home to!
We are having a cool spell right now, which is more than welcome, because I was starting to get that overwhelmed feeling that comes every year around this time. All that warm, green, lushness, and all those buzzing arthropods friends that I've been appreciating all spring and early summer, have now been around long enough that they aren't so new, and their numbers have multiplied to the point where the weeds are defeating me and I get chased out of my own garden by the evening mosquitoes.
It's time to get serious and fight back the insect sheltering jungle that is my garden, and this year, I have a brand new weapon - garden shears. Friends of mine moved from their country house back to the city, and they allowed me to pilfer their tool shed after they took what they need. One of the treasures I found are these garden shears. I love them. With these shears comes a feeling of independence. No longer am I bound to that noisy weed eater. Hooray! I have such a hard time getting the weed eater to work, that I always let Brandon do the trimming. These days, his to-do list is so long that I hesitate to encourage time spent trimming (notice I said encourage, not nag!), which means everything is getting shaggy. With my trusty shears, at least I can cut back the important parts all on my own. I just have to be careful not to snip off any chicken parts while I'm working!
I've found the key to using the garden shears is to limit myself to small jobs, otherwise my back and arms start to feel like they are getting exercise. Fortunately, these shears come with a built in break reminder - the left handle pops off about every tenth snip. This means I must straighten my back, re-attach the handle, and tell myself to slow down. It's ingenious.
Ah... Helen, what are you doing to Mrs. Hall?!
During one of my frequent breaks, I took some photos of my newly trimmed garden bed and then noticed that I caught the chickens in an embarrassing moment. Can you ladies pick each others butt feathers somewhere else?! I guess it's kind of sweet, isn't it? Only best of friends would stand head to tail and groom each others hard to reach spots. It's just a shame that have to use their beaks!
I know this is going to sound like an excuse, but whenever I try to weed the garden, things die. I get lost in thought, and they next thing I know I went from pulling weeds from the carrots to pulling carrots, or I'm hoeing between rows, lose my place, and hoe down the beans. I try to squeeze in between the onions to pull a weed and step on the pumpkin vine. While I had the garden shears in play, I thought I would get fancy and snip the yellow and spotty leaves from the bottom of the tomato plants. Well, it wasn't long before I snipped a green tomato right off the vine. Doh!
After cutting the weeds back and snipping off dead leaves, I utilized my collection of twisty ties, to tie up some of the low hanging tomato branches. I used seven ties, so see, Brandon, I am not a hoarder!