It’s Ladder Time

A nice winter day means ladder time – time for pruning, repairing, tying in. And so on this 50 degree day in the post Christmas pause I hauled out the ladder and pruned the New Dawn rose on the pergola.

The poor thing has a disease called Witches Broom and it will die, but as long as it keeps flowering in May I’ll keep tending to it. This year I may try some extra manure and a horticultural oil spray that might keep the mites that transmit the disease at bay.

To replace the rose, eventually, I planted clematis Montana at the other end of the pergola. After doing a whole lot of nothing for two months it took off, and I hope it will bloom in the spring. It looks a little shaggy and unkempt at the moment, like someone forgot to pull the Virginia Creeper off the house.

I imagine many of us are having a real pause this year. COVID’s omicron variant has crashed through us like a tsunami. Noah had it over Christmas and so we spent the holiday just the three of us, in masks, six feet apart. A memorable Christmas, at least.

And through it all little things bloom, like this confused camellia. One single crimson bloom among hundreds of tightly closed pink buds. Someone’s got to be different, right?

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