We Never Promised You A Rose Garden


Mother's Days are very special around this household It's a day you can hold the entire family hostage to fulfill your dearest wishes without a qualm of guilt. About a week or so before the day, the family began skirting the issue with questions directed toward each other rather than the recipient of the honored occasion."What are we doing for Mother's Day?" "I don't know", replies the dearly beloved spouse. "Mom hasn't said, yet." "Well, at least this time we can't build a stone landing for the canoe in the canal!" states the son. "Don't give her any ideas!" retorts daughter.

It all started about ten years ago when the children were big enough and old enough to physically help. At that time, we had just moved to Denver and were landscaping around our new home, by ourselves. For Mother's Day, a huge truck load of dirt and manure was deliverd to our home and unceremouniously dumped in the front yard. We spent the entire day sculpting a mound (to resemble something of a berm) and covering it with shrubs. What a great day!

Every year since there has always been a project of one kind or another. Mother's Day heralds the beginning of the growing season. From a flagstone patio to a stone canal boat landing, there were always holes to be dug and beds to be made. Whenever the question was raised, "What do you want for Mother's Day?" The answer was, "Your body!"

"I wish that meant something", grumbled dearly beloved spouse. "Why can't we just go out to eat like everyone else does" questioned daughter. Well, this year was the turning point. To a person, the family said if I wanted to play in the dirt all day, that was fine with them, but they never promised me a rose garden, my current project. They offered to pick up fried chicken when we were all ready to eat.

The raised rose bed is almost complete. About 50 bags of leaves gathered from my neighors last fall have decomposed, and mixed with dirt and manure should do very nicely for the bed. Limestone rocks, which seem to multiply like rabbits in the yard, circle the bed about 24 inches high containing all the good soil mix.

The fun part is piecing the stone raised bed together. The hard part is digging up all that grass and shaking the clay gum off the roots to reuse. The fire ants certainly don't help matters. This 18 X 10 X 2 feet rose bed will contain all the remaining cuttings that rooted from the '93 Texas Rose Rustlers, rose rustle and swap at Peaceable Kingdom. There are 24 that are waiting for a nice cozy bed to sink their roots into.

Even though I was left to my own devices this year, it was fun to see the project take shape, being able to do exactly as I wished at any time during the construction, something you can't always do when your workers have strong opinions about how things should be completed. [Please note that the editor, ie "son", strongly represents, uh, I mean resents, this statement] Oh well, it was fun to have the help while it lasted. From now on, I guess

Mother's Day requests will have to be a surprise. Keep them guessing. An excursion one year. Big feast the next. Soon, maybe, the quilty conscious will kick in. But, if it doesn't, when they least suspect it, bring out the shovels and show them those huge rocks that would look marvellous in the north corner with trees, that won't take anytime to move!


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