Sunday, May 1, 2016

Healing Time

(Sung to the tune of Closing Time by Semisonic)

Healing time,

I've shut the doors & I've stayed in from the cold hailed-on world.
Healing time,
Waiting for new leaves out for every boy plant and girl.
Healing time,
I need some alcohol so send me your whiskey or beer.
Healing time,
My garden's messed up, but I can't stay in here.

I wish there were buds to bloom right now.

Why aren't there some buds to bloom right now?
I need for some buds to bloom right now.
Bloom right now.

I don't want to rain on anyone's parade, but one week after the hailstorm, my parade is certainly characterized by crushed hopes and trashed flowers.  Besides that storm, there have been several others.  Forget the drought in this area of Kansas.  I've had over 10 inches of rain in 6 days and the rose garden is back to swampland.  What is a simple gardener to do?

Wrecked are the irises and peonies.  Well, if I'm being truthful, they are only moderately wrecked.  Irises and peonies who were leeward of the house from the storm or were sheltered by large neighboring shrubs came through largely intact and are still contributing color to the garden, although the blooms are damaged from up close (see the several examples on this entry).  In many cases, the stems were broken but the irises are blooming, albeit closer to the ground. 

Peony 'Scarlett O'hara'
Some roses lost buds, and, as I've investigated the damage further than my brief outside survey last week, the strawberries and blackberries are toast for this year.  Not "jam for toast", they ARE toast.  Peony 'Scarlett O'Hara', normally so beautiful, looks a little beaten up this year, a soiled dove more befitting my personal nickname for her of Scarlett O'Harlot. 

It is actually interesting, setting aside my deep despair, to look around and see what plants did or didn't stand up to the hailstorm.  I should be making lists and writing down names.  Most native plants, of course, like this Asclepias at right, shrugged off the hail and seem completely undamaged.  There are some varieties of peonies who survived intact despite being right out in the open, while others beside them were either shredded or lost their fat buds.  Some roses lost leaves or buds, while others haven't paused. 'Morden Blush' for instance, shown below, went ahead this week to open blooms that were even more blushingly beautiful than normal.  

'Morden Blush'

On the opposite extreme are the alliums.  I had such high hopes for some new alliums I planted last year.  Many broke off entirely and never bloomed.  Others, like this decrepit specimen, survived to rue the day they poked their head above the ground.

Iris 'Roselene'
I must be patient now, patient to wait for nature's repair, patient to wait another year for the promise of some to return.  'Roselene', fair Roselene, how I miss your cheery face and exquisite form.

1 comment:

  1. The Morden Blush rose looks beautiful! And I had to look at least twice to see the damage on some of those irises. The color is certainly fantastic. I'm sure there is still a lot of damage showing and some plants won't recover until next year...but I still am amazed by how quickly well established plants move on from such a traumatic event. Your butterfly milkweed promises to be very full and luscious later in the season, doesn't it?!


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