I Am What I Am

I am a gardening snob. While I can arguably be accused of being many other kinds of snob, this is one I easily ‘fess to.

I am a gardening snob.

What crime, you might ask, to which I am confessing?  It could be native vs. all other plants; or local nurseries vs. mail order, or David Austen Roses vs Knock Out roses.  There are a plethora of permutations.

My crime, my prejudice, is the very definition of gardener, in my book.  Unless your hands are wrist deep in dirt, you are not a gardener.  You may be a designer, or a conscientious homeowner, but gardener, no.  My neighborhood is full of point and click gardens (landscapes as I refer to them).  Folks wanting maximum curb appeal with the least amount of bother.  Cover up that horrible utility box or erase my neighbor’s presence, but it has to be NO maintenance.   Once I write the check I no longer want to think about it.

Gardeners think about it all the time.  And I ain’t talkin sex, I am talking plants.    Is that the right spot for X, should I move Y?  Maybe it’s time to pull the plug on Z as it’s been five years and no improvement.  Experiment W has hit the jackpot, time to invest in more.  We absorb our plants through our pores.  Dream about next year, plant for the next decade.

One of my neighbors made a huge investment in landscaping.  Purchased yards and yards of topsoil, invested in thousands of dollars of mature plantings.  Then rarely spent time in the space that was created.  I couldn’t see the point. I guess it was the horticultural version of I belong to the country club.  My landscape is more expensive than yours.

Most of the gardeners I know, besides gardening to a compulsion most of us barely understand, are gardening to create a place of peace and beauty and sanctuary,  A place to spend time, recharge, seek comfort.

And this, I am most comfortable being snobbish about.