Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mother's Day and Creeping Clocks

Happy Mother's Day to all who mother. It is sunny, windy and cold here in Nebraska. The windchill is thirty degrees. An old-wives tale says not to plant garden before May 15th.

Spring is showing off its colors. A profusion of fuchsia flowers explodes from the neighbor's redbud tree. Beside our front door our flowering crab is covered in white blooms sweet-scenting each inhale.

A couple of weeks ago we opened windows for the first time this year and heard cries for mulch from neglected landscaping. I moaned; inside work wasn't done. To do a "bag count," I had "to walk" the yard. Pre-school Aja saw me and came to help. I said it could be 100. She said, "I can do it." There isn't anything she thinks she can't do. After Simons' Lawn Service power-raked, she stomped over, "Did you know somebody was mowing your yard? Why didn't you ask me? I would have done it."

Menard's had a cypress mulch sale. I loaded my 4-door buick several times. Forty-two was the most a yard-man loaded and didn't obstruct a mirror. Great job. My car smelled like a Florida swamp.

For a minimum of handling, I unloaded the bags where I wanted them placed. To my surprise the neighbors offered to help. One took a small shovel to remove the weeds. I ripped the bags and the other one spread it -- twenty-eight bags worth. Their parents were shocked. You see, Aja is four and Ryker is six. What great neighbors.

Landscaped plants happily "tucked in," I am back working in the house with occasional weeding visits to the yard. Tomatoes won't be planted until next weekend. When we had a warm spell I shopped to update my phlox garden. The clerk frowned and said, "Creeping clocks?"

I looked at my creeping clocks garden and saw, you guessed it, a clock. It is completely surrounded by lavender phlox close to the ground. From 12 to 2 a shrub obstructs lunch and nap time. However, I think I'll get rid of the shrub; winter split it from a ball to a bowl.
The daffodils at 4 did their bit and have stepped back. 5 has an unusual gift that doesn't show up every year. I love its name: fritalari aliagris (phonetic spelling). Tickles the tongue, doesn't it. One to two-inch tulip-shaped checkerboard flowers hang from a short stem. This year the checks were maroon and cream.
Tulips and daffodils do their thing at 10. A pair of deep pink and one yellow tulip stand guard over break time. Large rocks and pebbles hold down the center. A few wild purple violets have popped up here and there painting happy reminders of childhood May baskets.

To Mother's everywhere: May you find the joy in little things; May you know your place is important in the larger scheme of life. God Bless.

2008 Red Convertible Travel Series

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