The garden cycles through the seasons at its own pace. And although it seems that, here at Stonewell,we put a greater amount of effort into the gardens in late winter, and then early to mid-spring, pruning fruit tress, adding 60 tons of composted horse manure to all the beds, feeding the bulbs and roses, performing selective, editorial ‘weeding’ of the self sowers, (over whom we try to maintain some control), moving plants around, planting out things that we’ve propagated in the greenhouse, edging the beds and borders, mulching, etc… perhaps I’m wrong in this perception. Presently, the flower borders seem to be making their magic on their own with little interference from us; self-sown, annual poppies exhuberate, anthemis leads the cheer, lavender is beginning to make it’s voice heard. The annuals; nicotiana, cleome, cosmos, and petunias are making their colorful and fragrant contribution and the whole place exudes and effusive, jubilant and colorful quality. It seems effortless, compared to the spring training sessions that last for weeks on end, and we are greatly appreciative of this garden cycle. Wait, but didn’t I just spend many hours weeding the vegetable garden, spraying the cole crops with BT, planting more vegetable seeds, screening the dahlias and the berry crops for insects, deadheading the roses and feeding them again, setting up Japanese Beatle traps, pruning the weigelas and the philadelphii, screening the vegetable garden for pests, etc,,,? Yes, it’s all work keeping the gardens in shape, while creating new gardens for clients, but, at the end of the day, even for hyper-critical me, the gardens provide a moment of respite and refreshment from the dull, green, boring landscapes that we see far too much of.