Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Anal Lets Loose

We're expecting about 50 guests at our house next weekend for our second annual Kentucky Derby Party. It's no small undertaking...especially for a crotchety old man like myself. Friends are coming from all over the place, including several I haven't seen for 15 years.

I started planning months ago. The early focus is the yard. The one-acre lot--nearly all on the west side of the north-facing house--is entirely too much for us to manage. We make a noble effort every year despite the drought, the deer, and the long, hot summers with varying degrees of success and quite a lot of failure.

There's not a single planned purchase in my landscape. Nope. That's not how I roll. Other than the many dogwoods, tulip poplars and pines that were here when I moved in, it's 100 percent impulse. Every single specimen obtained on a whim. I've been doing it for years--eleven years at this location, resulting in an eclectic collection of more than 500 different varieties.

For the last two years, the focus has been spiffing things up for the Derby Party. You can't plant several flats of annuals and couple of potted plants in the yard the weekend before the party. It's just not done. You have to get most of the planting done by the end of March so the new arrivals have time to settle. By then we need to focus on spiffing up the house. We can't have anyone saying our house is dirty, now can we?

Right now the garden is full of teeny tiny little weeds. I don't have hours and hours to crawl around pulling them, so they're just going to have to be there. I strongly suspect I'm the only one who will notice. So I'm going to try to let it go. Try. I'm pretty sure I can.

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