We agree, kinda, sorta

More than once my wife has told me, “you don’t have to have one of every plant in the world”, and of course I agree. That’s a lot of plants, so how is it possible for me to disagree? However, and this a huge however, she wants fewer plants and I want more, even a tiny fraction of the world’s plants, and nevermind that the garden is already chock full of them.

The issue that provoked this conversation (this time) was the purchase of two flowering maples (Abutilon ‘Tiger Eye’, above, and ‘Dennis’) that I just had to have after seeing one in the greenhouse of a local public garden. These are not cold hardy, and I’ve seen these for years without thinking much about one, but ‘Tiger Eye’ caught my eye and I figured I must have one to sit on the partially shaded round patio. So, I bought two, and of course a few more plants to fill out the delivery.

Flowering maples are not at all unusual in other parts of the country, but since they’re not cold hardy here, there aren’t many around. The two pots where the flowering maples will be planted were intended to be filled by cannas (below) that are stashed in the garage for the winter, and possibly a canna or two can be shoehorned into slightly smaller containers, but probably all will go into the ground in the damp lower, rear garden. This is ideal for cannas, and here several have grown huge, but they are a pain to dig up in the muck to store for the winter.

With a plant obsession, I’ve learned that my wife’s ire is less aroused by my warning that a delivery is imminent, or that a trunk load (I have a very small trunk) will be coming home today. I think her comments are made only in a head shaking, “what the heck is he thinking” kind of way, and occasionally I shake my own head in wonder.

In any case, the garden is making progress coming out of its winter lull, even if last week’s freeze messed with too many glorious blooms. The new planting area in the lower, rear garden is half filled, with more deliveries on the way that must be explained as essential. This will be a vast improvement over the damp, weedy lawn that served no purpose except to heed my wife’s wish that no more lawn be turned to garden. The grass is gone, at least most of it with a narrow strip left for the path, and I’m thrilled that it’s gone. I hope she agrees.

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