I spent most of this afternoon in my garden, snipping and clipping. Roses needed deadheading. Welsh poppies, which can produce millions of seeds, needed to be beheaded before the seeds ripened. Columbine and foxglove, left to dry, can now be cut back and the seeds shaken onto the ground to reseed. Weeds, trying their best to hide, were found and plucked. Lady's Mantle and Cat Mint will soon need cutting back to encourage fresh growth. It felt good to get these tasks done, but when I looked over my work, it didn't look as good as it felt because something had changed.
We are now in high summer. The fresh exuberance of spring into early summer is gone. The blush is off the rose, and even those roses are fewer. It always makes me a bit sad to turn this corner in the changing seasons. And yet, this begins the slower time in the garden, the lazy, hazy days of summer, if you will. There will be vegetables to collect for dinner, raspberries to enjoy for a while yet, and that lone rose in the vase, where there was an exuberant bouquet, will still smell sweet and be appreciated for its singular form and color, joined by sprigs of lavender.
Gardening is about being in tune with nature and the changes it brings. I take photos of the spring abundance to remember, and yes, sometimes to wish I could hold on to it, but then move on to the delights of the next stage.
And oh, I must not forget the hydrangeas. It is now their time.