Putting Things Off

We’ve all done it before, put something off to do later. We justify it as we don’t have time or come up with other reasons that may cover our laziness. Sometimes it’s not laziness but life that interrupts things we want to get done. Really who could blame someone for not doing a gardening task in the middle of the northeast’s Snowpacalypse? Life interrupts but that doesn’t change the fact that we wanted or needed to get something done.

Two things I’ve been putting off can be seen in this one photo:

Can you guess what needs done here? One chore can easily be seen from the photo but the other is much harder to distinguish. Here are two clues, one is in the foreground and the other in the background.

If you still don’t know I’ll help you out!

In the foreground are sticks of dead annuals, coleus to be specific, that I left up over the winter. It doesn’t harm anything to leave them there but they eventually start to look like a mess. When you multiply the few you see in the picture with the dead annuals in the other gardens it really starts to add up. Basil near the deck garden, coleus here, and all sorts of plants in the selfseeding/self-sowing garden.  I even have sunflower stalks left in place because I just never took the time to dispose of them. My excuse for them is that the birds were enjoying them, but not now!  They have eaten all that I left for them. A thorough cleanup of the gardens is definitely in order!

In the background the conifer is infested with a very irritating ailment, bagworms. I hand picked bagworms last year and put them in a bucket of soapy water to kill them but must have missed a few. That technique works good for small infestations and for Japanese beetles. I missed a couple and they multiplied rapidly. I’ve decided to take out this tree entirely but not just because it’s prone to bagworms.  This tree was not planted by a builder, landscaper, or myself – it was planted by Mother Nature. She doesn’t care weather a plant is too close to a house or utility line. Mother Nature gardens indiscriminately and plants with an extremely carefree attitude. All well and good until tree roots get too close to a foundation!  The tree is just too big to be this close to the house. I’ll replace it with a deciduous tree (I’m thinking of a white dogwood) that won’t attract bagworms by the thousand, will be a slow grower, and will be limited in height. I’ll also plant it a little farther away from the house and the heat/AC system. I’ve noticed that the exhaust area from the unit is also causing the lower branches to die back. That’s something worth noting so that I can avoid the same problem with other plants in the same location.

My excuse:
It’s been cold, very cold. I know you folks reading from up north have it much worse than we do here in Tennessee. Our temperatures have been 10-15 degrees below normal for January and February. Let me just say that I like things normal. My other excuse is the greenhouse shed project. I’ve been devoting all available time to getting it completed.

So what’s your excuse? What have you been putting off that needs done in your garden?

Garden Blogger Assignment:

Write about the garden chores that you have been putting off whether because of natural reasons (weather or circumstances) or for laziness (which I’ve been very guilty of at times!) If you have it posted by March 6th I’ll post links back to your post from this post, just let me know when you have it complete!

Completed Assignments:

6 thoughts on “Putting Things Off”

  1. It should be a quick matter to take out that cedar. They self seed all over the place. I took one out and made it into my bottle tree. Might be a good one for you? No bagworms for sure.

    I put off so much it would be hard for me to begin. Mainly due to school and family, but also I like to take my time and do it really right. That means no rushing here as I am wont to do. Hope you are outside enjoying this sunshine!

  2. Hi Dave, Sometimes it's not just a matter of putting off, as much as it's needing extra help and not having it available. 😉 Thus, another lesson in patience!

    You also must admit (don't you think) that the time you have available to DO the things you want isn't always available?

    YOU are a busy fellow! Don't forget to rest!

  3. You won't miss the juniper at all. A bottle tree would be great fun…The girls might like it. I haven't the hand strength yet for a lot of pulling and cutting…and my spirit has been lagging. I am trying to imagine living in a zone 5 garden again~Glad it's just a little bit longer winter. gail

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