Notes from the Garden, Part I

Confessions of a Perennial Gardener


Six nurseries ago, I said, I’m through.

Colors cozied up in my backyard, five dozen pots

brimmed full, and Nature praised, More is less.

Anyway, I had little planting time or space

and proclaimed a mid-summer freeze.


That is, until Perennial Sale this week!

How their names enticed:

Elegance Snow cooling Artic Fire,

Peptalk Pink stirring with Red Rum,

Funfare Yellow hovering over Pixie Blues.

Each multi-life a guarantee to fill

the gap annuals leave behind

and fight against the fret of frost.


The choice? Ignore their tags’ advice

and squeeze them into tightnesses

between petunias and marigolds,

behind lines of pansies and mums,

under the semi-shade of maple trees.


More is more: my new rule.

When every bloom has dropped, I’ll wrap

my roots around those tucked in last.

We’ll breathe in winter’s depths,

dream of lives to come,

and celebrate death’s impermanence.