Her friends answer: "The surprises."
In ending her post, Laurrie posed the same question to her readers.
Baptisia and Blue Star in the background
For someone who spends a good deal of time working in, writing about and photographing her garden, I was almost embarrassed to admit I did not have a ready answer for my comment.
I found myself thinking: Just what was it about gardening I liked anyway?
I think I must be one of those cup-half-empty people, because one of my first thoughts was: Well, I could certainly come up with a list of things I don't like about gardening.
The first of the peonies have opened.
Weiglea by the front porch
My first Foxglove ever! I've only been trying to grow them for years.
Blood-sucking bugs should certainly be near the top of my list of negatives. I visit a fair number of gardens and so I feel confident in saying that my garden harbors hordes of mosquitoes like no other.
I don't know if it is our low lying proximity to the river, but the bugs sit waiting to ambush you the moment you step in the garden, like some greasy band of outlaws in a wild western. And add to my list of complaints that winning sound mosquiotes make. It all the charm of a dentist's drill.
There are also black flies in my garden,who like to torture me by pinging into my ears and eyes before the bite my temple of the back of my neck.
Last June, after I had amassed fifteen bites in a matter of a single afternoon, my husband bought me a mesh insect head net.
(Not unlike a ski mask, the mesh bag slips over your head to prevent insects from biting.) Though I was grateful for his thoughtfulness, I felt completely ridiculous when I slipped the net bag over my head.
"Oh this is attractive don't you think?" I asked him. "I look like I should be robbing a convenience store, not gardening!"
"I can just imagine" I continued, "our neighbors calling the police to report a suspicious character lurking in our backyard."
Surely all the work should figure on my list of negatives. The planting, dividing, weeding, watering....
Wait a minute! Come to think of it, I actually like all that work. I like getting out in the fresh air and mucking about in the garden. There an intimacy with nature when you are out there in the thick of things.
Heck, I even like duking it out with mother nature for the control of my garden, even if I know it is a battle I am never going to win.
Iris with Dame's Rocket in the background.
This pretty bush overhangs our front driveway. It is actually belongs to our neighbour.
A Japanese Iris from the back garden (below).
When I head out to work in the garden, I always start off with a slow walk around the flowers beds. This is my favorite time in the garden. I look and listen to the bees and the birds. I note my successes, lament my failures and make mental notes on things that need to be done. Despite myself, I yank out the odd weed.
I agree with Laurrie's friend. The garden surprises and it delights on these walks.
Just last weekend, I was taking a strolling around my Circle Garden. One of the first things I planted in this garden was a purple rhododendron. It failed to prosper and got down right straggly looking. I banished it to the back of the yard, where it has been limping along despite my almost cruel neglect. It hasn't bloomed in years.
And as I rounded the bed, there it was all frilly and purple. Blooming despite me. Now wasn't that just the nicest surprise.
I am linking this post to Lisa Gordon's Creative Exchange. To see Lisa's beautiful photography and that of other photographers from all around the world, just click the link.
I am also linking this post to Garden Blogger's Bloom Day hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. This is a great chance to see some wonderful gardens worldwide. Many thanks to Carol for hosting this great event each month.