Garden Tending, Preparing and Protecting for Winter

All weekend, my husband and I prepared and protected our yard and gardens for the gifts of winter.

It was so chilly in Chicago that I wore my heavy alpaca socks, a wool sweater over my overalls and my fleece baseball cap that has ear flaps. We prepared our perennial gardens by removing all the ornaments and storing them in our garden shed. One of my favorites is a little boy sitting on a bench with his dog. Now, he is resting comfortably in the shed and looks as if his feet are comfortably soaking in a tub of warm water.

Then we pounded 4 foot tall snow stakes in the ground around a new forsythia bush and my “Princess Shaynapink saucer magnolia tree. We wrapped chicken wire around the stakes to keep the dear from munching on the fuzzy magnolia buds, the tender branches of the forsythia bush and five rhododendrons’ delicate dormant spring blossoms.

We put smaller snow stakes in the pink carpet roses planing bed, which accents our circular driveway to protect them from the snowplow blade.

We did other maintenance chores and came inside before it got too dark because of the time change.

When I went upstairs to wash and change my clothes, I noticed that the beautiful peach Christmas Cactus that belonged to my mother (of blessed memory, which was pregnant with blossoms had given birth. Some of the leaves even had twins!

When I reviewed the day and how much Jordan and I enjoyed ourselves, I realized we had used all our Brain Colors. Our Yellow Brains organized the garden shed, our Blue Brains loved working outside all weekend, our Green Brains solved the deer nibbling problem with the chicken wire cloaks we draped around the magnolia, forsythia and rhododendron bushes and our Orange Brains enjoyed having fun together on a beautiful weekend.

I also contemplated thoughts about tending to, preparing and protecting our garden and what a lovely metaphor it is for how we have live our life together and watch what we have taken care of blossom for almost 47 years… our Love, our Marriage, our Family and Friendships and our Home!

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  1. Laurie Buchanan on November 9, 2011 at 11:04 am

    Sheila – I absolutely LOVE that you have a fleece baseball cap with ear flaps. When we get together I’ll wear my “mad bomber hat!” We are, indeed, COLORFUL gals 🙂

    • sheila on November 10, 2011 at 3:20 pm

      Yes, let get together soon and compare caps. We have a WWII British aviators cap we purchased on Portobello Road in London 35 years ago! Of course, we are Colorful gals that’s what makes us fun!

  2. Sarah on November 10, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    These are very timely tips. Last year I had problems with my garden vases because they got cracked because my husband left it sit out with water in it. I decided not to make the same mistake twice so I have already moved all my yard art and garden decor inside.

    • sheila on November 10, 2011 at 3:11 pm

      Sarah thank you for your comment. Yes, our ” Prepared Yellow Brains” help to protect our garden treasures until the long awaited Spring!

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