Today was a good day to be outside.
It rained early; a boon in an area still living with watering restrictions. Then the temperatures dropped quite fast, even though the sun came out. It was a nice afternoon to head outside for an hour of weed-whacking and general lawn maintenance.
But I’m not a fan of winter yard work. It doesn’t seem fair that my friends in other places get away with a few months of nothing to do, having only dead grass, bare trees, empty gardens and no weeds to deal with. The weeds are the worst. In this part of the country. weeds never die. They grow in blinding heat, record cold, during floods and droughts. I can easily kill everything else in my yard, but somehow, the weeds never fall victim to my lack of gardening experience.
Every year, The Husband and I hit at least one local gardening center, money in hand and hope in our hearts. But as far as actual talent, our green thumbs are encased in concrete work gloves: we have them, but they aren’t really useful. Oh, we can dig holes, plant stuff in the correct part of the yard, fertilize and water. But plants have to be pretty tough to survive at our house.
In case you’re wondering, our yard does not look like an abandoned missile field. We have banana trees, mango, a grapevine, avocado, passion fruit and assorted flowering trees, palms and ornamentals. There’s even grass growing, though the total lawn space can be trimmed with a push mower in less than an hour on a good day. It’s not the worst yard in the neighborhood, but it’s no showpiece, either. Let’s just say it’s average.
As I write, I realize that commiserating about one’s yard is pretty flippant in light of what happened in several midwestern states last week, where nearly 100 tornadoes destroyed thousands of homes and lives, and as of this writing, killed nearly forty people. Those who survived are lucky to be alive, and no doubt beginning to deal with what’s left of their properties, now rendered unrecognizable under piles of debris not all their own, but much of it chunks and shards of other people’s property. I hope they will get their lives – and their homes, businesses, and yes, even their lawns – back as soon as possible.