Friday, January 26, 2007

Global warming my ARSE!!!!

The weather hates me, although I will concede that in terms of gardening I was possibly taking the mick just a little. For those of you more experienced than me in the green fingered department, please feel free to snort with amusement. For those of you who have no gardening experience, let this be a lesson in what not to do to a garden …

I am a person who tends to get a bee in their bonnet every now and then and when said buzzy, poofy critter pays me a visit, I tend to act on it. So there I was last week, trolley full to bursting, on a mission to buy some creature comforts to make the garden look less like a prison yard. I bought a new door mat, some vegetable seeds, a bracket for the wind chimes, replaced the bluberry bush that Harry ate last summer, a miniature cherry tree, a nice smelly Japanese bush thingy, some herbs in hanging pots and some willow flowerbed edging (for reasons that will become clear later).

Keith was a little surprised when I came home with a car full of shrubbery, but to his credit, he assumed his best “resistance is futile” expression and started carting my new purchases into the garden.

The rest of the day was a pretty mucky one for me, spent mainly on hands and knees in the neighbour’s land stealing soil and planting up the garden. As you can see, it was a job well done, the wind chimes provided a gentle sound track to anyone staring out of the kitchen window at the fragrant oregano and lavender pots, and the trees looked perfect in their new setting.

The point of the willow screening (and indeed the tree/ shrub thingies) was to provide Harry with a much needed toilet area. As you may just be able to see in the photos (david bailey was having a bad day with the light apparently) there is now a section of the flowerbed in which Harry can go and relieve himself.

We were aware that having had months of free reign in the garden, Harry would need some training to grasp the concept of a toilet area so we dutifully put him on his lead and walked him to the area. We waited ….. and waited …. We waved a treat at him … and then waited …… until finally, with a sigh, he cocked his leg.

Better luck next time, eh?

Apparently not.

So far, we have been taking Harry up to his little toilet area for 7 days and have yet to see any serious action. When he had free reign of the garden, you couldn’t have stopped him squatting if you had welded his backside shut, but not now, ooooh nooooo, you give him an area and some privacy and suddenly he gets stage fright!! Well, sleep soundly in the knowledge that we will not be giving up on this little crusade. That dog may be stubborn, but so are we, especially when it means the difference between a nice garden and a “minefield”. There will be no more incidences of taxi drivers making people change shoes as a result of our dog – not on my watch!!!

The real problem is a little harder to control though I’m afraid. You can plan for a lot in this life, but not for my stupidity. As my mother pointed out with a chuckle the other day, who plants their garden in January? Well, yes, the answer is obviously me, isn’t it?

How was I supposed to know that it was going to snow the week after?!? OK so the month was a fair indication, I’ll grant you, but as any avid listening of Radio 5 Live will agree, we have been told for the last 3 months that spring has already sprung, and that the weather is warm enough for small furry critters to start breeding. It’s not warm enough to keep my plants alive though.

Actually I seem to have mitigated the worst of the weather by bringing the hanging pots into the kitchen and glaring menacingly at the other plants to discourage them from dying. It has either worked, or the whole plant is frozen, the jury is still out.

Oh and on the subject of Harry and snow, he showed his boundless intelligence once again by running around like a goon, sticking his schnozz in piles of snow and then sneezing. Repeat for the duration of his walk.

If he didn’t have a leg at each corner he’d fall over, I swear.

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