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Winter Frustrations: A Whiter Shade of Pale

Frustrated, I need to get out in the garden and winter’s only half over. Chores that are torturous in summer now sound as appetizing as a sun-warmed heirloom tomato the size of my fist.
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You know what would do me good? Dividing a clump of say, overgrown Miscanthus. First to dig up its roots that stretch halfway to China, then to attack it like a Viking with an ax, and then to excavate giant new holes for each newly divided clump. Sounds like just what Dr. Winter-Blahs ordered.

Or I might be up for edging the whole garden, front and back, with my warped, seen-it-all, hand edger. Then I could drag the v-shaped chunks of extra, wet, heavy soil around my pockmarked lawn in a vintage wheelbarrow with a flat tire! I would want hoses to lie in my path every 4-6 feet. Though frustrating in the heat of August, it would be welcome and life affirming right about now. Way better kind of seasonal frustration than say, falling on a patch of black ice while holding a travel tumbler of boiling hot coffee. Not that it’s ever happened to me at the Chicago Botanic Garden in front of all my peers.

Also, I could really go for scrambling to the top of my compost bins like a billy goat, driving my fork into the heart of it, twisting and turning until I feel like I might have a heart attack. This I would do dressed as William Wallace, kilted and blue faced and ready for battle. They may take our weeds, but they’ll never take our COMPOST!

I could shampoo the carpets, clean the basement, paint the kitchen, alphabetize the books, but those aren’t my passions (and that’s why I haven’t done any of them yet) and that doesn’t soothe the itch to be caked with mud.

I swear I feel like this every January. Don’t you? Perusing seed catalogs hardly satisfies the need to get out there, get my blood pumping and rip stuff up! I guess I could go out there and winter prune my neighbor’s Philadephus, it looks a little shaggy from here, it barely blooms anyway, and I’m sure they won’t mind.

 Join me in the forum and we can talk about what sort of garden torture you'd endure this January!