A Gardener’s Wish: labor

wreath for gardenersAll I really want for Christmas is a yard boy!   Is that so wrong?

Someone to spread the compost, plant the bulbs I haven’t yet gotten to, haul away the weeds and debris, turn the beds, and… There’s not a gardener on the planet who wouldn’t welcome a little assistance every now and then.  Mostly now; when and where I say so, thank you very much!

Today’s post, the 3rd in our series…

The 12 days of Christmas for gardeners,
cooks and people who eat

…is the gift of time, effort and good honest work.

Gift certificates for childcare, a candle lit bath or a sensuous massage are all very well and good for those good folks who finished up their fall garden chores in a timely matter.  The rest of us mere mortals are still shuffling the sack of Allium bulbs alongside an enormous grocery list, shopping bags, and boxes of ornaments waiting to be hung on the still-not-yet-purchased Christmas tree.

Outside, fallen leaves on the front walk are matting into a soggy slick posing a danger to unwitting visitors and anyone trying to make their way to the front porch to deliver holiday goodies. And then there’s the tarp covered with bare root hostas awaiting their new home.

The season is never quite long enough for all that needs doing.  Here’s my fantasy list of garden-work gift certificates I’d love to find in my stocking on Christmas morning:

  • 1 yard organic compost neatly tucked around the perennials in my new shade bed.
  • Mountains (OK–lots) of rich chicken manure dug into my vegetable garden which is seeming a little low on resources…hmmm, aren’t we all?
  • A date with a sensitive arborist to tidy up my venerable-but-shaggy Japanese Maple and maybe take a little off the sides of the Queen in the backyard who’s getting a little long in the tooth herself.
  • Blackberry patrol~sadly having nothing to do with smart phones.
  • Tool sharpening – be still my heart!!!
  • A gleaming shiny polish on my vintage travel trailer garden folly would make me giddy.

Go ahead and include a massage and a candlelit bath if it’ll make you feel better – but trust me, a helping hand and a strong back is pure GOLD and a small price we all pay for the many gifts of the garden.

lil loafer

my lil loafer


7 Responses to “A Gardener’s Wish: labor”

  1. robin December 7, 2010 at 6:26 pm #

    Love this post; compliments my own blog post today! I hope your wished-for elves come and clean up the never-ending pile of “to do” that is in my garden too!

    In case it helps someone choose an “under $10” gift for you, I just had 3 pair of shears completely overhauled for a total of $15 — that’s $5 a pair, and they were done in less than 24 hours. Aurora Lawnmower, how I love thee!

  2. Mary December 7, 2010 at 6:29 pm #

    Ditto…to all of it! Love the wreath!

  3. Lorene December 7, 2010 at 6:55 pm #

    Thanks for the tip Robin – $5 a pair is a steal…someone taking care of it is the real gift!!!

  4. Lorene December 7, 2010 at 6:56 pm #

    under the many hands make light work model – maybe we should share a load next spring!

  5. Pam December 8, 2010 at 10:27 pm #

    I had no idea, Lorene, that you have been roaming around my garden/yard! You have described it to a “T.” Bring on the help!! What a great gift that would be!

  6. Kathy from Cold Climate Gardening December 12, 2010 at 10:35 pm #

    If you had a decent winter it would solve so many of your problems. Those hostas on the tarp? They’d be frozen solid here. Those leaves on the walk? Buried under snow. Well, yes, you then have to shovel the snow off the walk. Can’t have everything. In general, though, winter is a pretty effective way to wipe out your fall to-do list. If you have a bona-fide winter. Which you obviously do not.

    That is a cute wreath, btw.

  7. Lorene December 13, 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    Oh ain’t it the truth! Yesterday’s temps were upper 50’s with 2 1/2 inches of rain!!! What a sloppy mess – indoors and out! Snow cover starts to look pretty inviting…let alone FESTIVE!!!