Now, at the end of a long season, is the time to take a close look at your garden. Be honest with yourself about what thrived and what delighted you over the summer, what suffered during the drought, what grew too large and took over, and which plants languished and disappointed you.
At the same time, since gardens offer us a unique look at our own natures as well as the nature around us, we may as well take stock of ourselves as gardeners. It's not really all about the plants, slugs, and weather, is it? What's going on outside our doors is so much about what we bring to the equation....
Here are a few questions I've been asking myself this week...maybe they'll be helpful to you. But be forwarned...I'm not liking some of my own answers too much...
-Did you try too hard? Overplant, get overly ambitious, fall for too many plants (yet again)?
-Did you overwork and groom your garden within an inch of its life so nothing had a chance to surprise you?
-Did you take good enough care of your garden (water, weeding, deadheading, refereeing between plants) so that it had a chance to perform and look its best?
--Did you pay enough attention to what each plant needs to flourish, rather than try to make it adapt to where you wanted to plant it?
-Is your garden fully alive with birds and bees, frogs and creatures? Are you nourishing nature in the broader sense than just plants?
-If your garden doesn't feel like a sanctuary for you and your family, what would make it so? A private sunny terrace, the sound of water, a taller fence or hedge, fragrant and healing plants, comfy chaises?
-How can you make your garden less work and more enjoyable for you, the gardener, as well as your family? Not just a bunch of plants to fuss over, but a place for the restoration of the senses, to relax with family and friends....a garden in the fullest sense of the word.
What am I forgetting? Please feel free to chime in....