doodle by andre: it’s so regrettable


Y ES, AND THE CHECK IS IN THE MAIL, and that rose you’re about to buy is nonstop, that petunia self-cleaning, and the grass-seed mix? It’s low-mow! Uh-huh. Now how come I have flowerless moments and have to deadhead regularly and the only thing that’s nonstop here is the mowing? Oh, and there’s also the fact that my 20-year-old “dwarf” shrubs are not so little anymore. Thanks to Andre Jordan for another Thursday doodle, the perfect catalyst for a holiday weekend rant: What are your garden regrets? Grab a cold drink and let’s make a list together.

  1. Melissa J Bond says:

    My garden regrets are usually the same every year. It’s all those lovely seed packets I purchased and never planted. I’m a sucker for a pretty seed pack, especially Renee’s!

  2. Julia says:

    Passiflora incarnata, planted to climb trellis, but has gone everywhere else. Never has the fruit ripened and has come up at least forty feet away.

    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Julia. Oh, dear, another traveling plant. A friend told me about something in his yard yesterday that he thinks has jumped the driveway…underground. Scary. And not listed as “invasive” or anything. Nice to see you (and I assume your passionflower will be here crawling on the blog soon at this rate, no?). :)

  3. Fred from Loudonville, NY says:

    To Ailsa..My house is called Whimsey Hill, SO i could possibly live in a blue spruce tree. Getting serious, after reading your comment, the “candling” thing would be too little to late. TWO stories… I have a Norfolk Island pine that outgrew my sister’s house. It was a gift from her friend , when my father died 14 years ago. At this house, even though I have the BIG garden, I am NOT into house plants. ANYWAY the norfolk pine grew to about six foot tall. One day, I just looked at it , and said to myself, “give it a radical hair cut, and see what happens”. I lopped two feet off of it’s height (right to the top of where a row of branches formed). I then proceeded to shorten all of the branches in a graduated way, from bottom to top. Now about 5 years late it is still alive, and looking fine….Story 2…. I have a pair of Golden String Cypress bushes. They grew to GIANT , eight foot tall HAY MOUNDS (until) last fall. I decided I was not happy with the NATURAL “shaggy” look of their growth habbit. I got out some STURDY STICKS (8 foot long ones) stabbed them into the ground at the angle of the cuts I wanted to make, (to use as guides) STEPPED back a few times , until I adjusted them, and proceeded to, with the electric HEDGE CLIPPER, trim them. The process took one full day, but now I have two (7 foot) Toparized Pyramids. By next year, they will have filled in, and be two formal elements in the back boarder…. REMEMBER Ailsa, you are in charge of the plants, they are not in charge of you!

  4. deb says:

    As a new homeowner and gardening newbie, I was thrilled to get my hands on as much goutweed and chameleon as I could from generous neighbours. Yikes! Still pulling it out 13 years later.
    Also buying expensive much loved perennials for the sun to plant with shrubs that in no short time provided SHADE.

    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Deb. Yes, the gifts that keep on giving. Oh, dear. And the reality of success with shrubs…which bring shade. Oops. Well-said. I used to have coneflowers where I now have hostas, so I get it. Thank you, and do come see us again soon.

  5. chigal says:

    I got impatient with my blue cascading lobelia, still in little green mounds. So I bought a seed packet of the only little cascading flower I could find at the grocery store, white alyssum, to sow in between. Against a red wall. D’oh!

  6. Alejandro says:

    Holding on to plants that don’t fully satisfy me for too long thinking: “maybe next year it will look better”. But they never do.

  7. fern says:

    1. Trumpet vine that grew 50 foot up 2 different black locust trees. Yes, the hummingbirds loved it. The black locust was rotting so i had one cut down, but i am left with the trumpet vine attempting to come up all over my front yard. I mow every week and i can now tell when it’s time to mow becus the hundreds of trumpet vine shoots grow faster than the grass.
    2. Virginia Rose, a native, i thought would be nice as a border from neighbors, but it did poorly where i planted it due to gravelly soil. I made the mistake of moving it to a prime spot in front yard near the entry and this darn Virginia rose did so well that its underground runners popped up everywhere i didnt want it and also made it impossible to weed due to its prickly stems. And by mid-summer, black spot really marred its seedy appearance. So this past weekend, i decided it all had to go, native or not. Now i’ll have my tidy bed of sedums and daffodil bulbs back again.

  8. Melanie says:

    elderberry ‘black beauty’. Never got bigger than 2 feet and only a few flowers. Lots of winter kill for the past 4 years. It went out to the curb last week.

  9. Fred from Loudonville, NY says:

    To Annie in St. Paul… I was wondering how Ailsa was doing myself????, BUT Let’s give Ailsa a week or so, to MAYBE tackle the BIG blue spuce. I am GLAD that you commented on our commenting! I think it is WONDERFUL, that Margaret, here at awaytogarden has given US ALL a platform to make comments on!!!!! Margaret puts out a topic that could POSSIBLY inspire, BUT readers of Margaret’s blog, YOU are the other part, that makes this whole thing interesting. My SUGGESTION to all of the readers, is to MAKE comments. Short SNAPPY comments are fine, BUT comments with MEAT on them are better to chew on, and comment BACK on. I love typing a comment, and then going back a few hours, or a day or two , and SEEING if someone has added something. I don’t think ANYONE OF YOU have to agree on any of the opinions, Other wise we would all be from STEPFORD, Ct. So let’s all TYPE our thoughts, and make Margaret’s blog, even a BIGGER success than it already is!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Margaret says:

    @Annie in St. Paul: I can neither confirm nor deny the *situation* between Ailsa and Fred. That is the management’s official position on the matter. :)

    @Alejandro: Ain’t that the truth (with *everything* in life, Mr. Philosopher)? Hope springs eternal, or is it insanity? :)

    @Fred: I positively *love* the idea that there could be a town of Stepford, CT, in the world where all *those people* could live. Thanks for that image. Hilarious.

  11. Fred from Loudonville, NY says:

    To Annie in St. Paul…. I wonder myself, how Brian G. made out with the advice I gave him on June 19, 2009??? Did he “get” that plant from Gramercy Park in NYC, or did he go to a fancy garden center and buy one???? Maybe, if he looks back at OLD “postings” he might TYPE, and bring me up do date.

    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Rebecca. I think treehouses are fashionable at the moment (small footprint, green…you know: all-natural!) but yes, the case of the towering tree. Problematic. Nice to see you, and hope to again soon.

  12. TexasDeb says:

    Thank you all for the vicarious gardening fun. I was heading home jubilant from a realty sale that finally closed yesterday when I drove past a time/temp reading that declared it was 111. That’s right: one hundred and eleven degrees.

    Weeks of such nonsense combined with no rain have me currently regretting that I bought any new plants this year at all. With strict watering restrictions in place I feel like quite a bad plant steward. I now look out the windows with my glasses off so I can’t see so clearly all the accusatory wilting going on around me. Yikes!

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