Report From PIA – May 23
Today I planted annuals in the bed at the base of the drive. Last fall I smothered the grass in this area with newspapers and mulch. Today I scraped aside what was left of the papers and dug holes for the annuals. Not all of the digging was easy, however. There were spots in this area where the bluestone laid for the walkway extended some distance into the bed. Not an ideal substance to plant in.
I should have dug a large hole, removed most of the stone dust in a wide area, and filled the hole with good loam. But I was pressed for time and not feeling energetic, so I took the easy way out. I loosened the stone dust and what soil was there, added some bagged potting soil and fertilizer, and stuck the plant in place.
I’m taking a chance by such half-way measures, but it is possible that those annuals that are in less then ideal soil will grow anyway. Sometimes plants succeed against all odds.
There are those who would say that something isn’t worth doing unless it’s done right. But what is “right” isn’t always fixed, and by taking chances with different methods, alternatives, or even better practices may be found.
We constantly balance our knowledge of best practices and our time and energies. What’s important is to ask ourselves the consequences of experimentation, and how important the outcome is. If my plants don’t grow well, it’s not very significant all in all, but at other times the decision to experiment might have more dire consequences.