Counting Seedlings

130424 Seedlings


Our yard has 6 very large maple trees in it, all varieties.  Each spring I do battle with the seedlings that emerge from the ground.  I have a large perennial garden in that yard that is an oasis for these little saplings.  It doesn’t matter how much I rake the seeds out these are always popping up in the spring.  Right now they are the bane of my existence.

I have a bit of an OCD with counting and a few years ago I turned pulling these up into a counting thing.  Every morning when I take the dogs out I go into that garden and pull up no fewer than 25 of theses little trees.  They are only about 4″ tall and are surprisingly difficult to pull out of the ground.  Honestly it’ll probably take a couple of weeks to get them all out of the garden at that rate.  The consequences of not pulling them up now manifest themselves fully by fall when I have to go out with my shears and cut them to the ground because they’ve grown up in the center of my phlox unnoticed.

Counting my way through this garden every morning also gives me the opportunity to visit the plants that are coming up now (and the weeds).  I visit and revisit certain spots to see who made it through the winter or where they’ve moved from last season.  It’s a getting to know you thing every spring.  I guess if it wasn’t for pulling those saplings I could potentially visit an unfamiliar garden come June.

Happy First Day of Spring



I photographed this as I went out the door to work this morning.  It’s a little deceptive because these bulbs are under a cedar tree so the snow didn’t really accumulate there.  It’s nice to see they don’t care.

I could do without the snow now.  I’m over it.  I know there won’t be another snowshoeing day until next year.  We will just have to contend with cold, slush and ice until it finally warms enough for it all to go.  I love spring, the warming of the earth, going through the perennial beds to see what coming up and where.  The spring bulbs are the first to poke their heads up.

These daffodils are everywhere.  The photograph was taken in Enfield but there are hundreds in Rowe.  They started out as a pot of 12 bulbs that Mabel gave my sister when she was in the hospital for surgery during the blizzard of ’78.  Sue planted them in a flower bed around the patio in Rowe.  Over the years they’ve been dug up, divided and moved everywhere.  There are hundreds that bloom around the patio and now in other gardens.  They are over the bank going to the back forty because that was my mother’s mulch pile years ago.  I’ve given the bulbs to people all over New England and moved some to Enfield.

I think that’s my favorite part about perennial gardening – giving plants away and getting plants from other gardeners.  We have peonies that came from my third grade teacher’s garden, irises from my mother’s best friend.  I have a gas plant that came from an abandoned garden center in Enfield that has moved with me three times.  They are all beautiful in bloom but for me the true beauty is the reminder of gardeners that I loved that are no longer here.