The May Garden

Beautiful azaleas bloom in the May garden. (Photo (c) Hilda M. Morrill)
Beautiful azaleas bloom in the May garden. (Photo (c) Hilda M. Morrill)

Spring is in full swing. The outdoor furniture and umbrella have been taken out of the cellar and set up on the lawn by one of the gardens.

The flowering crabapple and cherry trees are beginning to lose their blossoms but the Kousa dogwoods, viburnums, rhododendrons, pieris and azaleas are spectacular.

Alas, the weeds are prolific, especially the goutweed and garlic mustard. The latter is easy to yank out and dispose of in yard waste paper bags so that their seeds do not germinate.

The perennial goutweed, however, has fibrous roots that are difficult to remove. New plants shoot up from any root pieces left in the ground. So, with goutweed it’s an on-going battle and more a case of keeping the leaves cut down at soil level. We’ve been told that we’re never going to win that battle – unless we move, of course.

In the vegetable garden, radish seeds planted a couple of weeks ago have germinated and are doing beautifully. Unfortunately, none of the Romaine lettuce seeds did, so we’ll have to plant more seed and hope for the best. This coming week we also hope to sow some spinach seeds.

We usually wait until around Memorial Day and consistently warmer weather before we sow the seeds of pole green beans, cucumbers and Zucchini squash into the warmer soil.

We never got to set up the peony hoops and recent rains have knocked some of the plants over, especially those with fat buds. We’ll trim off the smaller buds, since they usually don’t bloom anyway.

We still need to do lots of pruning, especially the older forsythia branches and dead rosebush stems. As the azaleas finish blooming, they’ll get pruned, too. Some of them have gotten way too big.

We recently read in a newspaper that hummingbirds have been spotted in a nearby town. So, we’re planning on taking down the birdseed feeder for the summer and hanging a new hummer nectar feeder in its place. The old hummer feeder will go back to its branch on the flowering cherry tree over a birdbath. And, we’re looking for a good place to hang a third hummer feeder. A recent PBS-TV nature program indicated that the more feeders we have, the more hummers we’ll get.

Soon we’ll be sitting outside again, under our umbrella, watching our beautiful hummer summer visitors.

Sounds like a plan!