Friday, November 23, 2012

My Secret Garden Shame

Oh Guerney’s Seed Catalogue, how I hate to love thee.

You come in the mail, all shiny and new, with your promises of stronger plants, more exotic varieties, and cold-resistant strains. A few years ago, I believed you—I thought you had secrets that other gardeners must know and I did not.  I scanned and planned and meticulously ordered. I bought my seeds from you, and then discovered the same varieties at Lowe’s for half the price. Oh the shame, the shame.

Late season tomatoes-- ALL from plants originating in the local nursery.
Further humiliation ensued when your seedlings were outproduced by those from the local nursery; some of your root stocks had the nerve to die right in their carefully constructed soil environments. I broke up with you. I swore you off—never again would I succumb to your wiles.

But your catalogues keep visiting. And you promise new, different plants—you ask me, would I like kiwis hardy to Zone 3? A persimmon, perhaps? You say your strawberries produce from June to October, and these artichokes can survive even the toughest winter? Give those lilies room—they’ll spread—and our Chinese lilac will engulf any trellis in a season.

Plus, we’ll give you $25 off.

Damn you, Guerney’s; damn you all to hell. Because I can’t stay away.

Yes, I received your most recent pamphlet of perdition. And yes, I do already have the order form filled out. Lemon grass? Witch hazel? No-dig gladiolas? Cold-hardy avocados? Heirloom pear varietals? Seriously? My will power has been destroyed in a single glossy blow.

Time to look in the mirror and know myself—and also to make friends with the UPS person.

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