Year One (2004): Moved into the new house in March. Planted $100 worth of nursery plants in April. Killed every blessed one.
Year Two (2005): Received free plants from work and bought seedlings online. Planted miniature daffodils that Sheryl gave me for my birthday. Only the daffodils lived to see another Spring.
Year Three (2006): Planted daylilies from Scott at work in Fall 2005. Bought plants in a white elephant sale in the Spring. Started seeds indoors. Daylilies came up grandly; plants died before I planted them; only catnip and lemon basil seedlings survived the furry aminal seige once planted outside. The previous year’s mini daffodil bulbs came up, albeit a touch weakly.
Year Four (2007): Impending. Daylilies currently showing leafy growth. One lone mini daffodil has already peeked out its little head, only to get snowed on. Catnip is still MIA, although I have high hopes. Scott got me greenhouse tulips that have already bloomed and done their piece; I plan to plant the bulbs outside after the leafy growth dies back.
Today, I spent some quality time with my lone surviving Rose of Sharon cutting. The ones I brought from the old apartment died off over time, but one of the cuttings from Scott is still alive and kicking. I’ve had it in perlite (a rooting medium) for nigh on two or three years now. I forget. At any rate, I repotted it this evening into a large plastic pot, leftover from my unfortunate garden center trip of 2004. I’m not sure what its root system is *supposed* to look like, but what it’s got is a long, stringy root system with feathery branchings-off here and there. The root system, stretched out, is probably one and a half times as long as the stick-with-leaves is tall.
So, I’m planning to set the Rose of Sharon outside once the danger of frost is past, in hopes of getting it growing upward more, branching out a little, and getting used to the outside. I don’t know if I’ll try to plant it this fall yet, but hopefully it’ll at least like its new home. Hopefully I didn’t just sign its death warrant, as I so often do with my garden plants.
The key for me? Finding low-maintenance plants that can stand being forgotten about for up to two weeks. Plants that don’t require daily watering. Plants that won’t kick it over the winter if I don’t get the mulch down in time. Yes, I am a neglectful gardener. But I still like plants. And gardening.