This is not going to be something like the TV show **it My Dad Said. The manure refers to the big bag of it sitting on a shelf on my patio, waiting for me to put it in my garden. This job is one of many of the fall garden clean-up and finish-up ones I am doing and need to do before the real four-letter word (snow) falls from above and covers my garden. I’ve been doing these garden jobs a little at a time, in between too cold and/or rainy weather and my time working, tending to the house, and socializing with family and friends. I am enjoying collecting fennel seeds, digging up and/or pruning dead plants (depending whether annual or perennial), even raking all the leaves. But I can’t seem to get to that bag of manure.
When I was growing up, my parents used to order half a truckload of manure every fall. The truck would back up into our driveway and dump the manure. Then Dad would get busy shovelling it bit by bit into the wheelbarrow and spreading it on the grass. I don’t remember if he put some on the vegetable garden or not, but considering Mom’s attachment to this garden, my guess would be “probably.”
So why can’t I do the same for my vegetable cum perennial cum herb garden?
Perhaps deep down I figure that by spreading this manure in my garden I’m just adding to the crap already in my life. Do I really want more money problems? Computer problems? Health problems? Time problems? Etc. etc. I am connected deeply to my garden – you might say it is me and I am it, so does that connect the garden manure to that in my life? There is also the perspective that I hate winter with a passion – the garden is dead and buried then and any gardening is inside with plants and planning for next year’s outdoor garden. I’ve already brought plants in from outside with surprising results. The carnation plant that refused to flower the last few months outside is doing so inside. The parsley continues to thrive – and it is in my face to remind me to actually use it. The petunia and begonias in pots are still flowering indoors. And my rosemary hasn’t died…yet.
Perhaps this manure spreading is a reminder that not too many warm sunny autumn days will occur before winter sets in. If I spread the manure, that’s it; the snow can come.
Or maybe it is just the thoughts of moving that heavy bag of manure from the patio to the garden. I could just do as Dad did, use the wheelbarrow. Ah, but that means another difficulty – getting it out of the small tool shed (the wheelbarrow stands behind the push lawn mower) but worst of all, trying to shut and lock the shed door afterwards. The door is warped and it’s a struggle to get it closed tightly.
I’m waiting until the last minute of fall to open the shed because I have the patio furniture to move in. Once the chairs and end tables are inside the shed, that’s it. Winter can arrive. Oh well, I guess I can dream about next spring, look at gardening magazines and books and my garden photos. And tend to my indoor plants.