Z is for…

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Zinnias have never been my favorite flower, though I love their name, but I bought two for my garden today anyway, because they were vibrant yellow and I tend to gravitate too much toward blues and purples in my gardening. Punches of vibrant yellow and glowy orange actually make the blues and purples stand out, which is why I bought some marigolds, as well. (Also, marigolds grow fast, so I can stick them in the foot-wide section of unused yard between the end of the lawn and the fence, and they’ll grow up against the side of the shed, and look charming.)

The Zinnias have been planted already, despite the fact that I asked for help with planting. This is because once I got started mucking in the dirt, I didn’t want to stop. And also because it’s a 30-foot long planter box (about 2 feet wide) in front of my house, and that’s a LOT of flowers.

I admit that my flower purchases today might seem a bit over-zealous (that counts as a z-word, really!), but 30 feet is a LOT to plant, when you consider that we’re trying to increase curb appeal to sell the house, and further consider that 30-feet is a LOT of planting space. epecially since the only things I didn’t remove from the box before I started were some foxglove, two rosebushes, and a dwarf grapefruit tree. This last has never borne fruit, but I refuse to remove it, because the previous owners, wacky as they were, planted it in honor of their dead father, and I respect that. After all, we mixed some of my grandparents’ ashes in with our own plantings.

In any case, I’ve planted one of the zinnias, two containers of delphinium, one of cosmos (daisies), one sixpack of marigolds, and three sixpacks of petunias.

I’ll post pictures when the planting is done, and the house looks cute enough.

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On another note. If anyone knows where to find a lemon zester for less than $7.00, I’d really like to know. I’ve been looking for one for AGES.

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This post is my last post for the Alphabytes meme. It was supposed to be all done in June, but I figure finishing it at all is better than not, and some days the muse just doesn’t want to cooperate.

Dawn Chorus

Early this morning, I padded through the house, barefoot and wearing ratty old sweats. My husband was still sleeping, and dogs were out back, basking in the morning sun.

I went out the front door to water the garden box. I set the sprayer on mist, as all the other settings are too strong for the stuff I planted, and communed with the flowers for several minutes, breathing in the clean smell of wet earth and growing things.

In the distance, I could hear the faint sound of church bells, though I don’t know what church. I think we’re too far from St. Leo’s to hear their chimes. Above my head, the birds were singing and twittering, already well into their day, and from another house on the block, I heard organ and panflute music, a not-quite-new-age blend of the two. I think I recognized “Amazing Grace,” which is a favorite song of mine despite any formal religious beliefs, the rest was less distinct – I couldn’t even tell when one song ended and another began.

Still, standing there barefoot, in the cool mist from my garden hose, and the still-soft morning breeze, listening to the chimes and the music, my heart expanded, and I was, for a moment, in a place of perfect peace, and at one with the universe.

All days should begin this way.