Sanna's Bag

“I never seem to have what I need when I need it. I’m going to make a belt-bag that’s bigger on the inside than on the outside, and just carry everything with me.”

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

thumbs up

I never think to do before and after photos until it's too late.  But then, I so rarely expect "after" to be so different from "before."  Today, I hired Lisa Nowak, Young Adult writer, independent publisher, and gardener to come over and prune my rosebushes. I have a black thumb, and my husband's favorite garden tool is the flame thrower, so the roses have sort of gone feral. Well Lisa whipped them back into shape and taught them a lesson they will not soon forget.  She even moved one that was starting to lie down to get into the sunlight. Then, after dealing with the four that I had in mind, she took me around front and got to work on a climbing old rose that has been growing through the chain link fence for so long that one big cane has completely enveloped a section of wire.  This whole pruning thing is magic to me.  She eyes the rose bush, then goes for it scientifically, whacking off pounds of canes, branches and twigs.  I know that the bushes wil be happier, but I'm always afraid I'll cut the wrong things, or cut too deep and kill the poor plant.  I know, rationally,that roses are hard to kill, especially in this climate, but as soon as I get those clippers in my hand, my heart fails me.

Lisa filled two yard debris cans with chopped up rose canes, and left another can's worth of Japanese quince suckers and dead daphne bushes for me to load up for next garbage day.  She even let me help espalier another rose against the front fence.  I got to put a rosebush in bondage.  It's gonna be gorgeous when it blooms!

There is a great deal of pleasure to be had in watching a competent professional go about a job.  There is even more pleasure to be had when that professional is a friend with whom you share many interests. And if you need to pay to get a thing done right, isn't wonderful to be able to give the money to someone you like?  all in all, a most satisfactory morning!


  • At 5:58 PM , Blogger Willow said...

    Hurray for your rose bushes, you and your gardener friend :)

    If you lived closer, I'd hire you to teach me to weave. I have a new (to me) loom already warped and, like you, my courage has failed me. I need a professional weaver to show me.

  • At 6:31 PM , Blogger Tim Young said...

    I love the flower but hate the thorn with such a passion that I have dug up and given away all my rosebushes.
    I might have kept them If I had a friend that could prune them for me. Flame throwers rock!

  • At 6:17 AM , Blogger KnitTech said...

    Nice! We've got to do some yard work this year also.

  • At 8:23 AM , Blogger Lyssa said...

    I pulled out a bunch of orangey pink roses this spring - the color wasn't a favorite and they were making me not want to weed or prune anything else near them!

    We left a couple of yellow ones and one pink (I think...) and pruned them back hard. They seem really happy now with extra space and sunshine. Someone told me that in our mild climates, they will try to just keep growing forever, when their usual program is to die back after a hard frost. I didn't feel so bad pruning them after that.

  • At 9:59 AM , Blogger Rose L said...

    Hey Tim, there are thronless roses you can grow! My parents had them when I was growing up. I am glad Lisa helped whip your roses into shape!

  • At 2:00 PM , Anonymous Janette said...

    Oh looking forward to the photos of the roses, in due course, of course!

    I'm hopeless in the garden when it comes to roses. We are fighting off aphids on our gardineas at the moment and not faring too well at all.

    I'm with Tim on the roses, but not so keen on the flame throwers, but then, flame throwers are a boy 'thing'! :)

  • At 2:38 PM , Anonymous Lisa Nowak said...

    Aw, thanks for saying so many nice things about me. :)

  • At 7:33 AM , Blogger Amy Lane said...

    I know-- Mate goes out to kill the roses twice a year. Most of them are still alive!


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