Nothing like shame avoidance to bring on frenzied weeding

There is nothing like having the imminent arrival of an important guest to shake away apathy and cause a frenzy of activity.  Lately I have been a bit slack on the gardening front.  I seem to have wholeheartedly embraced the wind down towards winter and wound right down.  I figured that as it cools down then the weeds will slow down and I’ll be able to get to them when I feel like it.

Shame prevents me from uploading any "before" photos!

Besides most of the beds don’t have any crops that need a new home, I mean it’s not like spring when you have a greenhouse bulging with greenery that desperately needs to go in the ground so you dig and weed and weed and dig every hour of light God sends and if things are really bad then you pop on one of those hat torches and keep going in the dark.

The expression “It’s a jungle out there” was probably the best way to describe the state I had allowed the garden to get into.  I do it every year – I take my crops and without so much as a thank you , I walk away with the intention of getting on to it later, knowing full well that it’s not going to happen and I’ll be the one in the dark, in the spring, digging and weeding with a torch strapped to my head!

Although the bed in the foreground is still a complete mess!

So I got news a couple of days ago to expect a very important visitor, and if it was Hubby the Un-Gardener who had the visitor, then he would just sweep the office, stack his papers nicely and put on the fresh coffee.  For me the stakes are higher, I would be ashamed if I let anyone see the garden in the state I let it get into.  I need to work hard.  I need to enlist help to get it done on time.  Why is my garden so big?

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I’ve been digging and weeding, weeding and digging for days!  Fortunately a well prepared soil lovingly tended in the spring has prevented all but the most stubborn weeds from taking up residence.  The worst culprit is the Dock with its nasty taproot. I may even go so far as to say it is my gardening nemesis.

There is a great deal of satisfaction to be had when ticking a task off a list!

I’m nearly there, with about a quarter of the garden left to do.  Not only am I urged on by completely eliminating the shame factor when my very important visitor shows up, but a thought popped into my head while I was toiling away:  “Sarah the Gardener, if you get all this done now, it will be easy to stay on top of over winter and then  you will have more spare time for exciting projects!”  I like that thought, so I will push on and try my hardest to have a weed free garden by the end of the week.  Wish me luck.

Come again soon – I have a whole load of gardening gems floating around in my head!

Sarah the Gardener  :  o )

20 Comments on “Nothing like shame avoidance to bring on frenzied weeding

  1. There is a certain point of the year that I give up on the weeding. The garden looks great for the first few months, then really starts to get wild towards the end. Maybe what I need to do is invite more people into it. Right now the garden is hidden between two planted farm fields – so not easily seen and therefore easily ignored at times.

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    • Hi there. There is nothing like “shame weeding” to clear a garden quickly. I think maybe inviting people over maybe once every couple of months should do it. Have a great season. Cheers Sarah : o )

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  2. I think your gardens look fantastic. 🙂 But I totally get this!! We’re just gearing up for the spring here and I have high hopes for staying on top of the weeds this year…we’ll see if it happens! I love your blog – glad I stumbled across it!

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    • Hi Nancy. Thank you for your kind words. If it wasn’t for the visitor I’m sure the garden will have stayed a complete mess. Every year I promise myself I’ll stay on top of the weeds, but it never happens – maybe this year! Cheers Sarah : o )

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  3. Hi Sarah! Boy do I know what you’re talking about. The shame, the guilt, the utter hopelessness as you look around at all the leftovers and weeds. I confess I’m not a “winter” gardener so when I unceremoniously snatch the last harvest, I never look back. I have vowed to do better as well. Let’s see if we can’t accomplish that ;o). I REALLY look forward to your posts as I’m still learning. Good luck!
    ~The Southern Gardener

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    • Hi there. Spring always seems to get the glory. All the hard work and attention is willingly lavished then. I need to get my head around a garden being for all seasons, so hopefully it makes it easier all round. Thanks for your kind words. Cheers Sarah : o )

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  4. With that many beds, you need to hire some help…or teach that cat how to use a shovel 🙂 We have six raised beds, but they are still full of weeds and some lettuce that bolted a long time ago. Now that’s shameful. Unfortunately my wife is no more motivated than I am to get out there and use the electric cultivator I bought her for Christmas. Wish we had a cat I could train.

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  5. Your garden looks great. You have a lot of beds to manage. Eight beds and the orchard keep us very busy.

    Spring is here, and there is only more to do. I look forward to seeing you updates.

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    • Hi there, I think I have learnt the best way to manage is to keep on top of the beds, with weeding etc, all year round – even in the winter, so that when spring comes you have less to do and don’t spend the entire growing season trying to catch up. Now I just have to figure out how to put my theory into practice! Cheers Sarah : o )

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  6. So timely. Guilt got the best of me just this morning and I spent time pulling weeds. I’m determined to do this on a regular basis this year and not let them get the upper hand later in the season. Me vs the weeds!

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    • Hi There. I always start off with best intentions, but in the end it comes down to embarrassment, shame, and guilt that causes the weeding work. Strangely its never the nice emotions like love and enjoy and pleasurable that invoke weeding episodes! Although a freshly weeded bed does look awesome. Good luck with the growing season. Sarah : o )

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  7. I can understand completely! I also have this stategy for cleaning the house. It’s alright when it’s just us but the thought of visitors popping round sends me into panic! I did the garden tidy in a panic on Saturday morning in preparation of my daughters birthday party. It wasn’t the kids that concerned me; just all the parents having a look round when dropping off and picking up!

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    • Hi There, its amazing what you put up with when its “just us”! If keeping on top of the housework and the garden wasn’t so relentless, I think I’d treat “just us” a little better! I think I need these visitors to keep me on my toes! Cheers Sarah : o )

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  8. Oh, dock, how I hate thee! It’s the bane of my gardening existence! I too let my garden get out of control last year…so bad I couldn’t even find the dang melons! This year, as the planting begins, I’m determined to stay on top of it. Everything I plant is getting surrounded with a thick layer of newspaper topped with compost. Even the paths are getting “papered!” I papered a few paths last season and was absolutely head over heels with the result: NO WEEDS!
    And bonus with the paper/mulch: Less watering! Which I’m also very bad at remembering to do until everything is sagging and wilting and crying for a drink.

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    • I have yet to master the art of mulching, but it is near the top of my list to get the hang of next season! The only blessing from our truly awful summer was it rained so much that I think I only got the hose out twice! Have a great season in your country paradise. Cheers Sarah :o)

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  9. Love your post, because I can totally relate! I am currently waging a war against weeds and after hours upon hours of battle and after many nasty words being thrown about, I am now prevailing! Hallelujah!!

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  10. Loved it! I used to invite overnight guests on a regular basis to force my hand in gardening and housekeeping. Your garden plan looks like what I do, though it’s a little funny to see you headed into winter, just as I’m putting in seeds.

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