Saturday, October 17, 2009
The Rock Garden
My mother always kept a "rock garden" on the sloping side of my childhood home. I assume it was called a rock garden because of the large rocks that bordered the garden and also separated the large collection of plants within.
In my early years I remember the top of the rock garden being a steady row of orange/brown Iris flowers against the house. Each end of season, my mother would faithfully cut away the plants to allow the bulbs to send up new growth in the spring. One year, I really wanted to help my mother. A friend of mine had just purchased a new invention that hardly anyone possessed: a weed eater. As I saw my friend cutting down weeds with that orange electric Black and Decker weed eater, I thought of all the time I could save my mother if I got him to cut down the Iris plants. I was a good boy and I explained the contraption. She hesitantly agreed and came to watch progress in action. As the string began to spin on that weed eater, the Iris' choppings began to fly like a blender without a lid. It was as if we were in the middle of a tornado of juicy plant shreds. My mother lost her sanctification and we were barely able to escape with the weed eater and our lives.
Another rock garden story fills my mind...Our neighbor to the left was a mean man. He was rather well-to-do and didn't seem to like kids at all. His wife was very nice though and we tried to be kind to her when we could. Our next door neighbors to our right had two girls a bit older than me. The younger, Tina and I decided that it would be a nice thing for us to put some Iris flowers from my mother's rock garden in a vase and leave them anonymously at the front door of our mean neighbor. So, me (being a good boy) asked my mother first if we could do it. She of course said "yes" and thought it was a good gesture. The problem was that I didn't understand horticulture. I found a large vase, dug the Iris plants up (bulbs and all) and put a large handful in front of our neighbors house. My mother was sore at me for several days that she had lost those good bulbs.
I found a very nice garder snake one time in that rock garden. I kept it for a while in a large glass canning jar. One day, to my surprise, that snake vomited itself up. I don't know how to describe it to this day. I don't know if it was shedding it's skin or what. All I know is, it opened it's mouth wide and vomited it's entire body out of its mouth. I was so freaked out that I dumped the snake out and ran away with only the willies.