I had a brief detour down the New Jersey shore recently. It wasn’t supposed to be brief but that’s a whole other story.
I went there to have a Memorial service for my mother, who passed away in January. She is buried, but because of the pandemic, even I wasn’t able to be at that service. So my sister came east from Oklahoma and the rest of our family was finally able to gather at the church we all attended.
The plan was then that I would stay at the beach to recover from my surgery. But like everything else we tried to do this June, the universe had other ideas. At least the family was able to gather for the memorial.
In my short time at the beach, however, I did notice the struggling beach rose in the photo, above.
I also talked to a cousin about her struggling hydrangeas. And what I told her is the title of this post: life’s too short to grow bad plants.
When compared to the poor little pink hydrangea above, these are doing just fabulously. And it may be a question of which side of of the newly raised staircase they are now on. The two in the above photo are sheltered from the most vicious northwest winds by that newly raised staircase while the struggling pink on one is not. But that that’s something that’s only going to be revealed by time.
While I was away, I had 5 more dead plants pulled out of my yard and I came back to find a few more that I am going to jettison. I am too old to look at struggling shrubs. It’s bad enough that I am struggling right now and need someone to do this for me!
So the last thing I want to do is to try to nurture a struggling whatever through yet another dry summer. I would rather look at a gap in the landscape and plant next year when ideally things will be better for everyone–and not quite so dry either.
Gardening for me is all about learning what works and what doesn’t. If suddenly we’re going to have drought a lot, I had better rethink my planting plans.
So another year to think about plants–and maybe recover in a lot of different ways–can only be a good thing.