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The Muchness of May

June 2nd, 2014
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Magnolias, hydrangeas, geraniums, roses galore, honeysuckle, confederate jasmine, daisies, lawns and weeds. All these beauties and more are in glorious bloom right now, in May. Many of these make for a sweetly scented walk down my driveway and through the garden. Here and there I see the last remnants of pansies. Yes, it’s true; pansies will last until the end of May. Atlanta gardening is a great joy this time of year.

In May, even bad gardens can seem good. The lushness of the exuberant spring growth covers a multitude of sins. But don’t let Edward Scissorhands get started with the mechanical shears too soon. Growth needs to harden before that first shearing of the season. Other cuts should be made thoughtfully just as a haircut to your head should be made thoughtfully, artistically and with care.

The first flush of Magnolia blooms in May always reminds me of my long deceased neighbor, Joe Rutland, who had a small second story screened porch on the back of his house. This porch was surrounded by a massive Magnolia grandiflora. In the soft summer evenings, Joe enjoyed a gin and tonic drink and the perfume of the magnolia while becoming intoxicated by both.

Marcia Weber