Out Front — Spring Yard-work

I’m living in a four-unit apartment house, but I seem to be the only resident with horticultural propensities. When I moved here there were five large pots sitting on the two stone walls separating the entrance to the stairs for the upstairs apartments from the recessed entrances on either side for the downstairs folks. The pots hadn’t been used for some years; it’s springtime and it wasn’t long before I had planted marigolds, pansies, violas, and suchlike plants in those inviting pots.

The other day I came down to the street and found my neighbor Beulah inspecting the pots. She’s 87 years old and I’m quite fond of her.

“Larry, I’m familiar with marigolds and pansies, but what have you put in this pot?”

“That one is Genovese sweet basil, and the small-leaved one is Greek oregano. I cook a lot, and I’ll be taking pinches of these plants all summer long. Now you feel free to use them too!”

“Oh, I don’t know — I don’t season my food much! I’ll keep it in mind, though!”

There is a squirrel who lives nearby that has been digging in my pots. I imagine that this creature has buried acorns in them and now wants to retrieve them. I encountered this animal, caught in the act, the other day. I was irate:

“You get the fuck away! If I could catch you I’d wring your scrawny neck!”

The squirrel ran to a tree and did that typical squirrel thing, circling to the other side of the trunk, then peering back at me.

I imagined it saying,”Good luck catching me! I’m way faster than you are!”

What to do? Is there some sort of squirrel repellant which won’t harm delicate young plants? Time for a Google session, I suppose!

The two tormented soft maples in front of the house have been shedding copious amounts of helicopter seeds lately. The pattern they form on the sidewalk is very appealing to me, but I do admit I have a low appeal threshold:



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