I LOVE spring. Especially early spring - I like tiny buds on trees, bits of green coming up through the earth, longer days, I like nice weather (don't you?)... and my garden. I'm amazed at how much I love to play in the dirt. The pride I feel when one of my plants grows, thrives, prospers... these are my babies and I find myself eschewing the age-old advice to talk to your plants (I'm told you are only crazy if they talk back!) but cooing at them. My tulips are simply precious, my forget-me-nots unforgettable, and my peonies are surely gifted. They grow so fast!
I've developed a passion for what I previously thought was the domain of little old ladies and hippies - seems I'm a little of both. I have a developed an awareness of the physical demands and skills required to effectively grow things - it is more than just digging holes and putting things in them. This can be back breaking work if you are not careful - but, a-ha, lucky for you, this gardener is a chiropractor, and I will share with you my gardening tips (so far... umm... water and sun are good and don't pull up 'weeds' until you are SURE they aren't young forget-me-nots - d'oh!) and some back-saving tips. And when my body complains that I'm paying more attention to my (darling!) baby rosebush (planted last year... and it lived!!!) than my lumbar spine, I will share this with you too, so you can learn from my mistakes. Do as I say, not as I do. Especially when I do kill my lilac bush by planting it in the shade. Sigh.
My body hasn't complained yet this season, though I've mostly just been clearing leaves and planting pansies. To protect my back, I find it best to get right down in the dirt. Trying to stay clean just hurts - squatting puts a lot of stress on the knees, and bending from the waist makes your back muscles work overtime just to keep you from face-planting in your plants. Sit or kneel, as you are able, and get as close to your work as you can. Don't stay in one position for too long, and take frequent breaks. Pace yourself - the season is just beginning!
Next up - your chiropractor plants a new lilac bush - this time in the sun!