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Garden Reports and Rejoicing – December 18

Plants in Bondage!

Some plants are sturdy and grow upright, and some do not. Not much news there, right? So why do we humans think that they should all be vertical, not to mention tidy? When a plant sprawls, what response do people have?  They bring out the rope and stakes.

Not only do they rein it in, tightly, but in the most visibly unattractive way possible. What is wrong with us?

OK, I understand not being pleased when those big, beautiful hydrangea blossoms fall over into the dirt. I too want those flowers to be vertical and noticeable. But there are ways of supporting plant stems that are either invisible or attractive. It just takes more time and thought.

Some plants should be left to their natural habit…if they sprawl, we should place them where this can be allowed and celebrated. And when they absolutely need support, the plants deserve a structure that is at least as attractive as they are.

Some plants are naturally floppy and others are weak from being grown with too much fertilizer and water. First we cause the problem, and then we deal with it in the most ugly way possible.

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