Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Obsessional? Not entirely sane?

Both.  Definitely both.

You will have heard me whinge, bitch and moan about how little I like summer.  True, but I love spring.  Recently garden pornography (catalogues) has been arriving thick and fast in my mail boxes (virtual and real).

And here is where insanity appears.  We are just coming out of an (ugly) period of convalescence.  There will be more surgery (and consequent convalescence) in a couple of months.  I am very, very tired.  My body is being recalcitrant.  There is a lot of remedial work which needs to be done in the garden after our blistering summer, and my absence from it.

So what do I do?  I succumb.  Again.  Big time.

From one company I purchased a giant allium, 20 of the most scented freesias, 20 mixed hyacinths, 20 red tulips (and I will buy more), 50 mixed anemones and 200 mixed daffodils.  More than enough. 

And then another catalogue with the most glorious illustrations arrived.  And my weak-willed self succumbed again.  Do you see why I refer to the catalogues as garden pornography?  I know I shouldn't look at them.  I feel very guilty when I do - and then I start to drool and it is all over. (clicking on the images will enlarge them)



On this page I bought 100 Premium Rainbow Mixed Daffodils, 100 Double Mixed Daffodils, 100 Split-Corona Daffodils and 100 Cottage Mixed Daffodils.  Again, more than enough.  But did I stop there.  Well no.


Twenty five (five each of the named varieties of the Super Splits.  But wait, there's more.


Another twenty-five (five each of these named varieties). And...


twenty-five of the Delightful Doubles.

Because I am obsessed with my garden and insane I also invested (as I did last year) in the Gardener's Pot Luck Collection.  These will be a mystery until they arrive, being made up from the bulbs which the company has left over in quantities which are uneconomical for them to replant.  And selling them to people with no will power is economical.  In fact I suspect it is very profitable indeed. 

Oh dear.  There are many, many hours of extremely hard work ahead of me.  Much weeding and soil preparation.  Then individually planting all of those bulbs (and the additional tulips too).

I am consoling myself by saying (true) that when they bloom the blood, sweat and tears involved in planting them will be a distant memory.  It may also be a welcome distraction when the skinny one is back in hospital.  But just the same...

As I said, insane and obsessional.

120 comments:

  1. I am not a gardener, although I have an appreciation for them, and envy those with a green finger. Insane and obsessional? Join the club!

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    1. Wendy aka Quillfeather: Gardening snuck up on me. And now it is just one of my obsessions - but a time, energy and money consuming one.

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  2. Naughty girl! But I can definitely understand how restraint and will power fly out the window when you see such beautiful temptation! Have you thought of hiring some young stalwart to do the more strenuous digging etc? Good luck in any case...Sounds like there's enough gardening there to keep a battalion of diggers occupied for at least a week. Now go and throw those naughty pictures in the recycling bin this minute!

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    1. Molly: I probably should throw them in the recycling bin as soon as they arrive. A young stalwart has charm - but one of my sisters-in-law tells me that they are great to dig new beds, but very destructive on existing beds. The exercise will be good for me.

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  3. I would be just as insane if I lived in a cooler clime. Love all the bulb flowers. Good on you, girl and may you have many happy planting days ahead. I am sooooo jealous.

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    1. Lydia La La: Thank you. I couldn't live in your climate, but you can grow things I only lust after.

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  4. Oh, my!

    Well, after they are all planted and you are cursing them and yourself for buying them they will show their happy little heads and nod at you. And they will gift you with a lift because that is what flowers do. May I suggest that you hire or beg for some help? Maybe some students?

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    1. Birdie: This is an annual thing. I can do it, I will do it, but there will be blood, sweat and tears involved. And then, come spring I will wander around with a smile on my face and in my heart.

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  5. You did this last year girl.....for heavens sake.

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    1. mybabyjohn/Delores: I did. And the year before. A slow learning insane obsessional.

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  6. I can think of worse addictions than flower gardening! But it does sound like you could use some help (in the garden, not necessarily on the psychiatrist's couch). :-) I love flowers and gardens but I in no way have an obsession with it, yet even I am tantalized and tempted by the beguiling flower porn (and fruit and veggie porn) that shows up in the guise of seed catalogs every spring. So I can only imagine the powerful riptide pull they must exert on you! Clearly, though it's hard, hard work, it must feed your soul, or you wouldn't do it. And you're so good at it! Your garden is always a thing of amazing beauty.

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    1. Laloofah: You are right - it does feed my soul. I would just like a less hungry soul.

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  7. P.S. Love the idea of the Pot Luck collection!

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    1. Laloofah: It is a brilliant idea - and I have got some WONDERFUL things in the collection in other years.

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  8. They should be regulated, those awful garden flower pimps. And selling to addicts, my god the humanity. Is there no decency left? Must bury my face in my cats. At least, I am not addicted to cats. Not any way. No. Not me. Bwuh ha ha.

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    1. Strayer: No, not addicted to cats at all. (and the liar, liar pants on fire principle means my pants are very warm as I type that). I will be able to give up the garden about the time you can give up cats. The first of never seems a likely date.

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    2. Yes I was lying. I am totally addicted to cats. I'm taking a course on how to lie, cheat and steal, you see. It was suggested I take the course, that I'm way behind on these skills and they are needed in our world. P.S. I am currently failing Basic Lying, Cheating and Stealing 101. Darn it.

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    3. Strayer: And all around you there are people who have graduated from advanced lying, cheating and stealing.

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  9. I can understand why you are always seduced into these purchases. And it must be impossible to let those lovely bulbs stay unplanted. I am afraid I am looking forward to the pictures you will be forced to post of those lovelies. You are powerless, it seems! :-)

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    1. DJan: I hope you realise that the vegetable catalogues will work their evil magic on you now? It only needs a tiny taste...

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  10. Oh, THOSE catalogues! Heh heh.
    Like Tesselaar's tempting, teasing, tantalizing tiny tomes advertising tritonias, tiger-lilies and tulips!
    Joy.
    The hours I've spent throughout the years pouring over the pages and marking my favourites with big bold pen stars.
    It's a past-time that allows one the chance to disappear into a world of spring-filled delights and forget everything else, even if only for a while.

    Gardeners indulgences. With few vices, I see no problem with such indulgence. Like visiting garden centres - especially those with a cafe - more encouragement to linger longer :)

    So sorry to hear how you are. With all that you do and go through, you deserve your delightful daffodils.
    Your treats.

    We've just come out of a record heatwave. So hideous. By the last sleepless night, I was very, very cranky indeed.
    Couldn't - didn't - want to focus on anything.
    Thankfully, it is cool again. Bliss.

    Thinking of you among pages of yellow :)

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    1. Vicki: Tesselars was the first. (Love your alliterative tribute to them.) Then Hancocks. I have hidden the Gardener's Express one. Garden centres are another danger - you are right. Even when I can resist the pretty pictures the actual plants themselves up the ante.
      Our summer has been obscenely hot too. It is cooler today, but still hotter than I like. And then almost everything is hotter than I like.

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  11. You know, you could be only insane. How awful. But you have cleverly balanced it with obsessional and voila, a beautiful garden.

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    1. Joanne Noragon: What a marvellous reframe. Thank you.

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  12. Those catalogs, my GOD those catalogs...how fun they are. I seem to have gotten off the mailing list, but reading your post brought it all back: the fun of scouring each page and imagining various flowers in bloom in my garden (never mind if I don't have the proper climate, soil, etc.). Thank goodness I've been dropped off the list. As it is, I can't enter a garden center without buying loads of plants. Your garden will be spectacular (MORE spectacular). Can't wait to see the pictures. And you're so right: the hard work really pays off and you're ready to do it again next season!

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    1. Ms. CrankyPants: I know I shouldn't do it, and I do it anyway. Every year. Porn is like that.

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  13. Garden porn indeed! I'm glad you have that distraction and I admire you for making all that work + all the caregiving you are doing. It's wine o'clock here - I love that term you coined. :)

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    1. Lynn: Wine o'clock is WONDERFUL. I am not sure that I should be admired for making more work for myself. Pitied? Condemned? One of those I think.

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  14. Of course something will have to give, when you buckle down to the gardening; might I recommend ignoring the cooking and cleaning? I've always found cleaning to be a thankless job at the best of times, and whoever is hungry can just rustle up their own grub. Happy reading, and purchasing, and planting, and ogling!

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    1. jenny_o: What a wonderful idea. No cleaning, next to no cooking - and requests for a glass of wine at the end of the day honoured immediately. I could like that.

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  15. I wouldn't know where to begin with flowers

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    1. Adam: Bulbs are easy. Did a hole, and drop them in. Add some blood and bone or other fertiliser if you are feeling generous. Then wait.

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  16. Mmmmmmm.... those daffodils have me drooling!! We have a measly few popping up... nothing as grand as your scale!! Splendid, and I want to see LOTS of photos!!!

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    1. Nicky HW: The daffodils had me drooling - which is how I got into this predicament. Again.
      Photos will be provided, but first they all have to go into the ground. And Jewel, (bless her) views blood and bone as crack cocaine for cats and follows me, digging up the bulbs so she can snort the fertiliser.

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  17. I never have understood why some people love getting their hands and finger nails all dirty in the garden soil.....and possibly touching....or picking up....Eewww, a bug or worm??!! Can you tell I'm NOT a digger or planter??!! LOL
    But I DO love flowers and gardens, and I've actually planted a thing or two in my life, but always wore gardening gloves! :)
    Please don't wear yourself out when you do all that planting, because lord knows you've had many difficult months. I admire you greatly...for many reasons! Hugs...

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    1. BECKY: I should wear gardening gloves, but don't because I cannot feel what I am doing. However, the scrub up afterwards is very thorough indeed.
      I probably will wear myself out - but it is in a good cause. And, if I am still gardening when the skinny one gets out of hospital next time it may stop me killing him. Or his sister. Another good cause.

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  18. A fabulous obsession - and those beautiful flowers must give you such pleasure when other things are troubling you. Enjoy your drooling! :)

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    1. Alexia: I do get immense pleasure out of the garden. I also give myself a fair amount of stress over it. On balance, the pleasure wins. Mostly.

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  19. The Fancy Frills and Delightful Doubles look gorgeous!
    Your garden is going to be even more beautiful once they all get blooming. I love scented Freesias, and scented stocks too, the big double ones. I've forgotten their name, it starts with A.
    I used to get garden catalogues, but cancelled them because of wanting so many plants that I just couldn't have.
    When you have a hubby who constantly "accidentally" kills things off, even looking in the catalogues becomes a waste of time.

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    1. River: 'Accidental' deaths in the garden would tempt me to some death dealing of my own.
      I love scented stocks as well - and their name escapes me as well.

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  20. Hey, that's a good obsession. They must love heat! I saw the comment on the blog and thought, 'I would melt.'

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    1. Ropt Kitty: They will do best when we start to get our first frosts. And I have some weeding (lots of weeding) to do before I start planting.

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  21. Hi EC,

    I love the phrase "Garden Pornography"?

    :-)

    Cheers

    PM

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    1. Plastic Mancunian: I call it as it is (on that front anyway).

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  22. From one obcessed gardener to another. You will be so happy when they show their happy colorful little faces. But then I should talk we don't have much in the way of grassy areas anymore. Those catalogs are very bad for our health aren't they? Mental health that is. lol

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    1. Teresa: Not to mention financial health. Good for my soul though.

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  23. Insane and obsessional? Hey, they're flower bulbs, not crack cocaine, so go for it, and enjoy your garden pornography!

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    1. Kath Lockett: No it is the blood and bone I spread liberally which is the crack cocaine - for cats.

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  24. Umm...I shouldn't bring it up but I didn't see you specifically mention Baby Moon daffodils, and if you don't have them, you need to buy some before you come to your senses. My absolute favorite. They are insanely fragrant--a couple will conquer your whole bathroom for a week. They are tiny. They are LATE. Long after the rest are gone, they're starting up. They smell like honey. Buy buy buy.

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    1. Murr Brewster: Drat you. Now I have ordered MORE bulbs. They do sound lovely though.

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  25. I take so much pleasure in your garden and your garden obsession. I can't tell you how much. The world would be a better place were more people so insane and obsessional.

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    1. tracy: What a truly lovely thing to say. Thank you.

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  26. But the hard work will be so worth it in the end, EC...and it's probably far better medicine than most of the drugs! And you'll get so much pleasure when those wonderful blooms are blossoming. :)

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    1. Lee: I hope so. It will however be very challenging. Getting down to the ground is both difficult and painful, and getting up again even harder. I have crawled across the lawn before. Just the same, I will find a way.

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    2. What about using a garden seat? Those are so much easier than being on your knees.

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    3. Laura Eno: I have not yet found one which is low enough to garden from AND which I can get down to easily. I am still looking though.

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    4. I understand re the difficulty of getting down to the ground and back up again, EC. I have arthritis in the hip..and that's a pain in the hip!!! Remember the words of that old Limbo song "How low can you go?"...well these days not low at all as far as I'm concerned. Once upon a time when I was young and knights were bold...I used to be able to do the Limbo...I can't even spare it a thought these days! ;)

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    5. Lee: These days I am as flexible as a brick. Frustrating. And painful.

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  27. Insane? Obsessional? For loving gardening, loving beauty?

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    1. Christine: Perhaps not on that count - but for biting off more than I can easily chew...?

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  28. I wish I lived closer so I could help you with the planting chore. The more hands the easier and merrier the planting of spring will be.
    Be well and Happy ~:)

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  29. I eyed off those beautiful pictures and felt glad (in a twisted way) that I can no longer work in our garden at all. If I succumbed to such temptation and ordered anything it would be my poor other half that would have to do the work and I can't do that to him. EC I will just have to enjoy the pics of your beautiful garden when it is flowering this coming spring.
    Do though look after yourself and don't overdo it....please. : )

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    1. Mimsie: When he can, the skinny one also plants bulbs. Much faster than I do - perhaps because he doesn't weed as he goes. In fact for him weeding involves using poisons - which I am not happy with.

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    2. I agree EC, we avoid poisons at all costs. My hubby tends to ignore weeds and when I gardened I'd sit for hours pulling or cutting out weeds. Unfortunately these days I get cross about weeds here and there but don't say anything as he does his best and one can ask no more of anyone than that.
      We had lots of rain yesterday and now I fear the weeds will start to come through. The thunderstorms put nitrogen into the rain which is turn puts nitrogen into the soil and I am sure the weeds will welcome that. Weeds.....grrrr!!

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    3. Mimsie: You are so right. At least in theory, rain should mean that everything in the garden grows. In practice it means the weeds go gang-busters and throttle all the plants that have been lovingly nurtured. Hiss and spit.

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  30. So you spread your porn here on the page to cause the rest of us to drool? Cruelty, woman! :)
    Your garden is gorgeous and I wish I had it. I don't blame you for your obsession. The results are spectacular!

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    1. Laura Eno: The zombie sheep are kept well under control. Thank you for saying that you enjoy my garden.

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  31. I think it is good to look at catalogs while resting...even if you give in to buy some bulbs. I enjoy your photos of your garden, I am sure it is blood sweat and tears, to get it to be so pretty

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    1. Kim @ Stuff could...: I can resist clothes (quite easily). Gardening catalogues and books are another thing all together...

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  32. My daisies were mildly aroused by this post. (hehe) You know, I never knew the joys of gardening until I had a yard to garden in. I always thought, "Ugh why garden???" But it's so beautiful and to watch them bloom and turn into beautiful flowers... I love tulips in the spring. We're ending our winter now and well, it's still SO FREEZING -- so in about 1 or 2 months depending on the weather, I'll be able to plant. Usually end of May I do it. I still need to learn a few things instead of mindlessly trekking into Home Depot's garden department getting the wrong soil or the wrong weed killers. I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed. I may ask you a few questions about gardening come May if that's ok..... Hope you're feeling great today, or at least better.

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    1. Deb: I am an enthusiastic amateur - and have made plenty of mistakes. However, if I know the answers I would be happy to answer your gardening questions. Oh, and the gardening thing crept up on me. I had also said that I would never garden. And here I am.

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  33. Consoling yourself with flowers and gardens sounds healing to me.

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    1. ladyfi: Other people seem to be able to be more moderate about it.

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  34. Good gracious! Are you planning to turn the entire outback into a flowering paradise? That's a LOT of bulbs!

    Don't daffodils come back every year in your part of the world? The bulbs I planted years and years ago are still going strong, and I can't imagine having enough garden space to be able to keep planting that many new bulbs every year. In any case, your garden must be breathtaking in the springtime. Your hard work will pay off in the spring. (But my laziness pays off now.)

    Take care.

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    1. Susan: Yes, some at least of the bulbs I planted last year (and the years before) will come back. However, the blistering summer we are just coming out of will have killed off some of plantings from earlier years. It is a BIG garden, and the bulbs are small...

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  35. Buying bulbs is such an act of faith and I admire you! As you enter your winter and the bulbs are quietly sleeping, anticipating the blooms to come must be akin to being a child on the night before Christmas.

    Glad to hear you all are on the mend.

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    1. Susan Kane: I like the night before Christmas analogy - and you are right it is a bit like that.

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  36. Oh the joys of gardening and seeing the fruits or flowers of your labour. I tried planting a bunch of bulbs. Then I had a 'lightbulb' moment and realised, oops..wrong sort of bulbs.

    I'm also insane and obsessional. I can um dig that. Still havent found matching pillows for my bedding plants :)

    Positive and colourful wishes, your way,

    Gary

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    1. klahanie: I always smile to see your comments. Thank you - and a magical weekend to you, to Penny and to Tristan.

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  37. "Do you see why I refer to the catalogues as garden pornography?" - I do, I really can see that *laughs. But you love it all really, tis in your bones the earth see, you have more than green fingers, you are practically Kermit the Frog. And how wonderful it will all be, that vibrant colour soaking into your tired mind and soothing it some, just when needed.

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    1. All Consuming: I grow plants which are not demanding - which gives the illusion of green thumbs. But thank you.

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  38. I must admit to reading garden porn too! But oh my, how will you plant all of those bulbs? Hubby and I plant together...he digs the hole and I scoot along behind, drop in the bulb and cover the hole. Hope you have a planting partner! We live near a rural area that is a mecca for tulips and daffodils. There are fields of them that go on forever every spring. Each year there is a tulip festival where people motor or bicycle from farm to farm. We walk through the acres of glorious petals, take pictures, and of course, purchase bulbs. It's a rite of spring here in the Pacific Northwest.
    Thanks for visiting my blog. I'm now a follower of yours!

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    1. Debora: Welcome and thank you. The Pacific Northwest with its tulip and daffodil mecca sounds magical. We have a flower festival in September (our spring), but it is artificially created. My partner will plant bulbs, much faster than I do, but we tend to being working on different garden beds. The cats 'help' in their own destructive way. Planting to excess has become an annual event here, and somehow I/we will find a way.

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  39. Hello again EC. I would like to get in touch with you - I have a selection of fridge mags for you to choose from if you would like.
    Please let me know how we can arrange for me to send you a photo.

    Speak to you soon,
    Vicki :)

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    1. Vicki: That is such a generous offer. I would LOVE a fridge magnet you have made. I have left a comment on your blog with my email address.

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    2. Fantastic! An email has been sent :)

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  40. I was once an addict, but mostly at nurseries and not catalogs and now all I see is all the work to plant, care, water, and weed after them, and then the sad loss at their demise of my not being able to take care of them. I guess one addiction or another is a good thing though as it keeps us busy and beautifies our surroundings and that of others who observe from near and far.

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    1. Linda Starr: I obsess about many things. Books, the garden, birds, earrings... and the list goes on. At least other people (if they are that way inclined) get some pleasure out of the garden.

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  41. NO ONE can resist daffodils! i'm off to purchase some, even though it's not the season here!

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    1. daisyfae: I think you could probably squeeze a few late bloomers in still. Worth a try. And I am glad to know that you are also a daffodil addict.

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  42. I'm a bulb addict, too, though not so much daffodils. And tulips just can't cope here on the coast. My great loves are hippeastrums, belladonna s and lycoris. I love the bulb porn, can never resist. Have you tried the green gardening kneeler that has a low pad for kneeling with arms to pull you up, and the top is a seat? Got mine from Diggers and couldn't plant anything, or weed without it. Last year I planted a few hundred bulbs but this year I'm still choosing. What a joy the garden is...

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    1. Carol: Snap on those bulbs as well - a little later in the season. Also liliums, and tuberous begonias and dahlias. And, and, and. I have looked at the gardening kneelers - but they will only assist with gardening from the edges (if that makes sense). Some of our garden beds are quite wide, and I need to get into the middle - where I can't kneel, and can only tread carefully. I might have to revise the way I garden and rethink the kneelers - thank you.

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  43. Sanity (and normality) are grossly over-rated.

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    1. J Cosmo Newbery: Just as well, because both are in short supply here.

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  44. I have to say I'm with you all along the line in this, though I do also love Autumn. But Summer, no, my fifth favourite season!

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    1. Dave King: In fact, Summer is the only season I don't like, and long for it to finish.

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  45. We all need our treats and oh the rewards will be endless :) Such beauty in your garden will be worth it.

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    1. DeniseinVA: Perhaps a more moderate garden treat would have sufficed. Except it didn't.

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  46. A big garden then? Or just a very crowded one?

    I have a small garden but I do have a riverbank at the bottom of it, which is sown with wildflowers blown free on the wind. I last paid for your sort of porn about 5 years ago, when our cat died. Its mortal remains fertilize the bulbs well now, and the wild flowers.

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    1. Don QuiScottie: Both. A big and crowded garden. I envy you your riverbank and wildflowers though.

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  47. There is a joy in being mad that only madmen know!

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  48. But just think: you will never have to plant daffodils again. These will last several lifetimes.
    I had vast beds of daffs and got so tired of them I dug lots of them up and gave them away.
    The leave behind such a mess when they die.

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    1. Friko: I hope so, but if we get another blistering summer (which we will) I will lose a lot of them again. Yes, they are messy when the blooms have gone - but I love them just the same.

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  49. --Yes! Inspite of the madness around you, YOU PLANT and dig and get your fingers dirty.

    This, my dear, is your sanity.

    Love to you ALWAYS FOREVER. Xxxxx

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    1. My Inner Chick: Yes, you are right. In the garden is where my sanity (such as it is) rests.

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  50. Husband has the green thumb here. I try not to even look at anything for more than a second for fear it will wither and die. But I do love flowers :)

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    1. Carol Kilgore: I think my thumb is determined rather than green. It doesn't come naturally - there has been a lot of perseverance. The results are worth it though.

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    2. PS: There are some things (maiden hair ferns for one) for which I have a decidedly brown thumb.

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  51. LOVE your bad cat, better cat :)

    Ah, love cats!! Flowers are lovely too, though.

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    1. wordsfallfrommyeyes: Welcome. I love them too. And the garden. And birds. And books. Have I mentioned I am obsessional?

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  52. I have been having a difficult relationship with my (many) plants lately. We get help for the ones outside (which I recommend, if it's at all possible). But I also have many indoor plants. And some of them have been expiring because I simply can't take care of them anymore the way I used to. It breaks my heart. I swear I'm going to thin the herd and give them away... and then the damn little buggers start sending up new shoots and flowers to make me fall in love with them all over again.

    The friend who gave me my first houseplant told me that you can't feel bad in the moment when you are nurturing something beautiful. And I think that is the essence of this madness.

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    1. Paper Chipmunk (aka Ellen): Your friend was right, but no doubt didn't mention the guilt that comes about because you are not nurturing them enough. Pulling the villian weeds away from them, and feeding and watering them when at times it is a struggle to do those things for yourself. Addictive though - which is their saving grace I think.

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  53. It's my theory that one should revel in one's obsessions rather than feel guilty about them. I do exactly that with my photography.

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    1. Ron Dudley: That sounds good to me - but I have so many obsessions. Birds, books, gardening...

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  54. Nothing wrong with planning a colour feast for your eyes (not to mention sweetness for your nose!) come the end of winter ... go for it! I want pictures!

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    1. Geoffrey Dunn: I am weeding up a storm at the moment - trying to make room for all those bulbs. The skinny one plants as I weed - but it way ahead of me. And there will be many, many photos.

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  55. oh, but there are much much worse insanities! harmful ones, whilst this one is giving so much joy to the world, the only harm may be to your wallet, a small price to pay in the big scheme of things...

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