Woman Power

I had a couple of lovely surprises today. First, clouds and coolness! Instead of the sweltering temperatures that had been forecast, the high today was twenty degrees below what it’s been for the past few weeks.

I made good use of the cool morning. Along the alley, partly blocking the entrance to my garage, were tall weeds, most waist height, some shoulder height. The way the driveway was built, the apron sloped downward a bit, as it should, to keep water from backing into the garage. The problem is that the slope ends below the bed of the alley, creating a gulley that collects any rain water and makes a perfect environment for . . .  you guessed it — weeds.

All spring and summer, whenever it rained enough to soak the ground, I’d go out and pull the weeds. Even though we haven’t had much rain for weeks, those weeds still grew immensely fast and even worse, they became cemented to the ground by the dry adobe-like clay soil. I’d asked the contractor to extend the driveway, which he agreed to do, but it’s not high on his list of priorities. Meantime, the weeds kept growing. He said he’d send workers out to whack the weeds, but the guys never showed up. Another worker said he’d send “his guy” to douse the weeds with weed killer, but he never came. Also, a worker said he’d drive past with his tractor, which would clear up those weeds in a few minutes. And of course, it didn’t happen. Someone told me that the city was supposed to mow the alleys, but that never happened, either.

So, I went out there to get rid of the weeds myself. As I dug and pulled, I couldn’t help thinking that one old woman with a shovel was doing what all those powerful men with their powerful chemicals and powerful machines wouldn’t do. Yay for woman power!

Once I cleared the weeds away from the driveway, I continued to dig up the weeds along the whole width of my property, a total of 150 square feet of tree-like weeds. Ouch. And I do mean ouch. I was out there for four hours and am stiff and sore from my shoulders to the soles of my feet.

But all those weeds are gone.

At least for now.

I’m sure they will grow back, but perhaps by that time, there will be some progress made on extending the driveway another two or three feet and filling in the gulley.

I also started removing the dead bindweed from the chain link fence. I wish there was a quick way to do that. The weed wraps itself around the wire, and clearing the wire is easy but time consuming. If it’s cool enough tomorrow, maybe I’ll take a chair out there and sit and pick.

Meantime, I can enjoy my other surprise. The New England aster are beginning to bloom! After their season, I’ll need to transplant some of them. Where once I had one plant, I now have five, and I’d like to spread them out.

Luckily, that can wait another couple of months. At the moment, I’m too tired to even lift the shovel let alone dig a small hole.


What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?

A fun book for not-so-fun times.

11 Responses to “Woman Power”

  1. rheashowalter Says:

    Asters grow wild in many parts of the mountains. I always have said that I was going to dig some up and transplant them…. it never has happened. The wild ones in the mountains are usually in bloom in early September – nice gift.

  2. Uthayanan Says:

    Beautiful asters. It is beautiful to have plants with flowers every month. One suggestion. if you can or if you feel like. Please plant another Aster one feet or one yard away just turn down the soil and add some compost but without any grass. You will get a result different.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Sounds great! I’ll do it. Thanks.

      • Uthayanan Says:

        If you believe in woman power please Mulch Your Garden. It is a organic way to avoid weeds.
        It will help fend off weeds and conserve moisture, which will reduce your need to irrigate.

          • Uthayanan Says:

            I have forgot to tell you my suggestion was initially was my wife’s idea. she was a militant of organic food and ecological and economic way of gardening. She has noticed that I was too generous to watering plants.
            Even she has suggested me to do drip watering system. If I am going to stay in the same place I am going to do that.
            It will help me to leave my place without asking to anybody to look after my plants.

          • Pat Bertram Says:

            It sounds like a good idea. Even here, where it’s so dry that the air sucks up any moisture, it should help with keeping the plants healthy. Now I just have to figure out what mulch to use and where to get it.

  3. Uthayanan Says:

    Me and my wife never afraid to experiment with gardening. To figure out for a good mulch. Buy a book at local book shop or barrow a book with your library. Can have a talk with near by florist, your municipal gardener, the best choice was make a visit to your nearby garden center. But please once you settle down with your car breaks. You health and security more important than gardening.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Good suggestions. I’ve been researching mulch online. Also weeds. Some people say to let weeds grow because they form a sort of living mulch. Most people, of course, think this is nonsense.

      • Uthayanan Says:

        I agree with you. Weeds need water and fertilizer (natural or artificial) Weeds also a plan like another. Online informations often very dangerous. (Specially in IT problems) I have always talked with garden center passionate keepers than commercials. I was fortune to born with a very big garden with my childhood and a intelligent, cultivated and educated wife. With the life experience I am no more bothered with childhood memories. But my fourth year with grief is not easy. During my every day walk I often have a little chat with a gardener around. I always considered conversation is an art.

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