Filed under: @ 5:33 pm

I’m hardcore.
Portrait of Margaret’s weekend.

I took Friday off from work so I could go to the Flower and Garden Show. For — golly — ten or twelve years now I have spent at least one day each spring wandering around getting flower drunk (like punch drunk only smells better), purchasing plants and garden geegaws and talking gardening with EVERYONE.
So Susan and I had made a date to spend Friday indulging our garden fantasies. I was excited because we weren’t sure that there was going to be a flower and garden show this year, the previous owners of the franchise were planning on closing it up if they couldn’t sell the franchise by a certain date last year, and also because this year I WOULDN’T HAVE TO PARK.
I like downtown Seattle. I enjoy wandering around and people watching, and I love shopping at Pike Place. But, with a passion beyond reason, I loathe driving downtown. Crowded, congested, slow, expensive, lots and lots and lots of people that I’m terrified of running over. I make exceptions of course, and I do know many sneaky back routes and sneaky parking garages, but it’s still a nuisance. This year, however, there’s Central Link.
Andrew and I came back from our trip to Washington D.C. in the summer of 2000 as hard core light rail whores. For the last 3 or 4 years we’ve been drooling watching the light rail track get closer and closer and closer. The Tukwilla light rail station opened in July. The Sea Tac station opened in December. I hadn’t realized that the only parking that is associated with the Sea Tac Link station is actually airport parking so my plan for Friday was actually a little modified in that I had to drive to the Tukwilla station to get the train, but enh! It’s only another mile or so.
Hop in the car, drive to the station, get the ticket, plug in the i-Pod and whoosh! Train came, I plopped into a seat, pulled out my Territorial Seeds catalogue, dialed up The Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s 1812, and fifteen minutes later I was downtown. Two block walk and I was there. It was fast, quiet, and I didn’t have to park. It’s been at least 20 years since it’s been easy to get downtown.

Susan and I, and eventually Susan’s mother in law, spent eight hours futzing around, smelling, and trying really hard to not purchase absolutely everything we were enchanted with. Susan and I are really bad at restraining each other when we’re enchanted with plants.
I didn’t by a lot of plants. Really.
At least not a lot for me. I only ended up with two peony plants (which I didn’t need), three new lily sets (which I really didn’t need), and well, only seven new dahlia sets which, since a lot of my dahlias have frozen in the last couple of years I…. needed…. Yeah! I really needed them!

Like I said, Susan and I are bad at restraining ourselves and each other.

Another relatively surreal train trip, it’ll take a long time for me to get used to how EASY the train is, and I was home.
Home with plants that needed to be planted.
Home with plants that needed to be planted facing a weekend of mild temperatures and little daytime precipitation.

Saturday we got up and listened to our Saturday morning KUOW lineup which is so hardwired into our brains that it’s almost impossible for us to start a weekend without it. We didn’t really have anything planned for Saturday except that I knew I had to get laundry done and Andrew had to go out to Computer Sonics, a chore that I find as unappealing as Andrew finds garden work. We try to spend most of our weekend time together, especially now that I’m working 5 days a week, but where I find gardening to be a dreamily blissful task that I could do (and have done) for days at a time, Andrew dislikes it. Andrew, of course, is endlessly fascinated in most computer stores and since he does a lot of work with Computer Sonics, he knows most of their staff and can spend what I consider to be an extreme amount of time talking electronics with them. While we try to spend most of our weekend time together, we also try to avoid subjecting the other to our individual obsessive passions. So the fact that I wanted to garden and he had some computer chores to do worked out quite nicely.

Enter the planting. The pruning. The weeding, the raking, the watering….. it was a GREAT garden day.
If for no other reason than I found that I actually do have a few crocuses left.
I planted probably 200 crocus bulbs in the fall of 2008. What I didn’t realize was that squirrels love crocuses. I mean they LOVE crocuses. I spent much of last spring watching my crocuses poke up and then rapidly disappear in a chorus of teeny little squirrel crunches. Every time I’d have one that was JUST ABOUT to bloom one or another squirrel would find it and I’d be out another one.
This year I gave up and planted some of the umpty million grape hyacinth bulbs that have been multiplying in the back yard. Squirrels DON’T like hyacinth bulbs and they are pretty, but I miss the crocuses. There’s something very spring about crocus. So digging around in the mulch, raking up dead leaves and tidying in general, I was tickled to find these secret crocuses. *I* didn’t plant them there, behind a rock and at the base of a very large rhododendron. I assume that the squirrels must have transplanted them for me, but they also seem to have forgotten where the bulbs are. I may end up with a few after all.

And I meant to do this last year, but never got around to it. I’ll try to take weekly photos of the front garden and post them as the garden develops throughout the spring and summer. I am so effin’ SMUG about that garden.

I admit, it’s not so much to look at right now, but I’m creating an information base here. The bulbs are coming up and the Pieris japonica is in bloom. Most everything else has leaf buds, but the clematis, enthusiast that it is, has flower buds already.

I had to post this photo too, even though it’s not technically in the garden. This is the Nuccio’s Pearl Camelia which is filling a spot along the east side of the driveway that was created when one of the rhododendron bushes died. He’s just a baby as yet (obviously), but he’s covered with buds.

And when he’s in bloom, he’ll look like this:

I’m hardcore.
Come on over. In a couple of weeks the hyacinths will be in bloom and we can get flower drunk together.

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