My nearly two year old son discovered earthworms today - actually I made the mistake of showing them to him as I was planting a bunch of new plants (more about those in a bit). He spent about a half hour digging through the piles of backfill and picking out all the worms. He'd then carry the squirming little critters over to the nearest plant and sprinkle them on it. I didn't have the heart to stop him because it was really cute, plus, he wasn't hurting the worms - just relocating them. I'm thrilled at how much he enjoys being outside with me and how much he likes 'helping' me in the garden by doing various things like pulling the petals off my zinnias, filling in recently dug planting holes, sprinkling mulch and playing with the hose and/or sprinkler. We were outside for about 4 hours today and he still cried when I made him come inside to get ready for dinner.
What, you may ask, were we doing outside for 4 hours? Planting about 35 new trial plants from Novalis. The 18 wheeler pulled up this morning and Doug and I unloaded the plants and set to work divvying them up. I wanted to get some of them planted before the weekend as we have visitors coming for a few days...so now my back is killing me and I'm pretty darned tired. I haven't worked that hard since spring (how sad is that?). I feel accomplished, though, so that's always a nice feeling.
The plants look great and I can't wait to report on their progress over the coming weeks. I was most excited to try a new Hydrangea called 'Lemon Daddy'. It's got chartreuse foliage and pink flowers. Another potential favorite is a really stunning cut leaf maple called 'Shirazz' - it's got pink and white leaf margins and supposedly has a really beautiful growth habit. I promise to be honest with everyone about what works in my garden and what doesn't - that goes for these new plants as well as any new technique or organic pest control I try. Let's hope all the results are positive!