Is there a surer sign of Spring than daffodils? The daffodils in my garden have been enjoying the rainy, cool weather far more than I have. This morning they were looking particularly happy, and I can’t blame them since it was a glorious day. I spent the morning down in the garden, working away to the sound of church bells, donkey hooves clipping and clopping up and down the stone steps, and the music of a man in a nearby terrace singing old songs. Today was the day for Spring cleaning and doing some planting and rearranging in the garden. As I have very little experience gardening, this is all new to me. I have inherited here a rather overgrown and barely maintained garden, which I have been hacking away at, trimming, and reorganizing section by section. For instance, here is how the section I spent the morning working looked about a year ago:

A pile of rocks that needed to be moved, irises that hadn’t been cut back in 5 or 6 years, and a jade plant crying out for help. The whole area has been dug out now. I decided to plant lavender there, which I know grows well in the garden. And I know how to take care of it now thanks to this lovely article on how to prune lavender in Italy. I also moved the ivy plant and replaced it with some much cheerier pansies, which always make me think of my mom.

My cat inspected everything after I finished, just to make sure I put things in the right place:

I think the jade plant, which recovered some ground last summer, was not pleased with all the rain this winter. It is in worse shape now than before. But I have a history of bad luck with jade plants. For the time being, I repotted it in what I have termed “pronto soccorso” (first aid). Does anyone have any advice on how to make it happy? Lots of sun? Not so much sun? How much water? It has lost most of its leaves over this winter. Will they grow back?

Always an adventure!

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6 Comments
  • Chef Chuck

    Ciao Laura, That looks wonderful,the colors! Gardening has a ring to it!
    Those sounds you write about are often in my mind, the bell I miss that so much. Enjoy!

    March 14, 2009
  • South of Rome

    Lovely! I’m desperate to get back in our yard. Even if it’s just to the get grass cut and the weeds mowed down!

    March 14, 2009
  • Laura

    Ciao Chuck! Grazie! It is nice to have color in the garden again. I am planning on a terrace garden with planters of rosemary, parsley and basil. Thus summer I hope not to have to depend on whether the local shop has run out of fresh herbs before I get there. I have wild plans for cilantro as well, which you can’t buy here. I love it though!

    Ciao Karen! Yes, unfortunately the first entrance into the garden is always the mowing and weeding. The first half of my morning was doing just that. But a great excuse to be out in the sun! Hope you are enjoying the lovely weather this weekend!

    March 14, 2009
  • Leanne in Italy

    Your garden looks like it is coming along quite nicely…well by looking at last years photos it does!

    March 14, 2009
  • Laura

    Ciao Leanne! Yes… piano piano… the garden is improving. Next month the big adventure comes. We are digging up all the weeds that are where the grass should be and replanting new grass seed. That will be interesting! 🙂

    March 15, 2009

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