05 May 2008

Alien nettles?

I wanted a small vegetable garden at the country house. Not much, just some rhubarb, salad, herbs, strawberries and one or two raspberry bushes. I had the perfect spot. The former owner had already planted rhubarb there so why not carry on where he had finished.

The place was absolutely covered in nettles but what the heck you just pull them up by the roots right? It took me 10 seconds to realize that pulling them up was out of the question. They had roots as big as my index finger and grew half way to China.

Armed with a spade I started digging. And digging and digging. Six hours later I had removed all the nettles from approximately 15 square meters and I was beyond tired. I had been going on autopilot the last hour or so and my husband had told me twice already to finish for the day. But if I stopped now all my hard work would be unnecessary because they would grow right back. So before I could call it a day I had to cover the ground with black garden matting in order to kill the survivors. And because it was a windy day I had to secure it with stones. A lot of stones! Thoughts of a long hot soak in the tub accompanied with a glass of wine or two were the only thing that kept me going!

Another hour and fifty stones later I was done! My entire body felt like I had been run over by a truck! I had muscles aching I didn’t even know existed. And I used to work as a physical therapist so I should know! But I was happy and very, very proud. My husband had already left for town and I just couldn’t wait to get into my car and drive home too for my long longed for hot bath! When I opened the trunk I found the five sacks of compost soil I had bought on the way down and forgotten to unload !!!! I wept. And as I dragged them out of the trunk one by one I could swear my foul language killed the nettles that were left…….

When I came back two days later I ran to look if my hard work had been in vain. Wow! It looked just perfect. No nettles! But wait a minute weren’t there nettles everywhere else instead? Oh yes! All my flowerbeds where full of the little bastards! So now I have a war going on in my garden. It’s between me and the nettles and right now it’s 5-0. To the nettles! When ever I turn my back on them they seem to grow up again. Poof and they’re back! Could they be aliens? Are they in fact planning on taking over not only my garden but my brain as well? I have been feeling rather odd a while now having a strange urge to just give up and let the nettles take over. Is that a first step towards being beamed up to the Mothership do you think?


Maria said...

Ser härligt ut med trädgårdsarbete och nylagd rabatt.
Snart dax att börja här också!

Lisa B. said...

Hi Jeanette,

I love your banner, it's so rich and colorful. What a nettle nightmare you have going on!! I've had the "stinging" kind and I hate those. I always end up grabbing one bare handed and OMG they hurt!

Thanks so much for visiting my blog. You know, I should do a post on the excesses of our country. You are not the first to have commented about how much stuff we have at our sales here. I don't think the average American realizes how much stuff we have. The show you commented on would be considered a small one here! If we never manufactured or imported another thing in this country, I think we could live off our old excess stuff for decades!! And yet people keep buying more brand new stuff. I think we have a disease here! That's one of the things I love about selling vintage...trying to encourage people to re-invent the old things and/or appreciate what we already have.

Sorry for the long comment...it's my passion! Thanks again for comming!

Lisa B. said...

Oh I forgot to tell you how cute I thought your new garden bed is! Can't wait to see things growing (other than more nettles) in it!

Angela Louise said...

Hi Jeanette! Don't dispair! If you keep pulling those little suckers out before they go to seed, you should only have to do it another seven years!!! As the saying goes, "one years seeding, seven years weeding"! AAAHHHHH! Good luck with that!
Hope you have recovered from all your hard work, Angela.

Carolyn said...

Oh, you go, girl!!!! Those nettles don't have a chance of getting their roots down for good,with you on their trail. LOL. Seriously, I couldn't believe the picture of their roots and your story of their invasion!!! It does sound like such a hassle, but am so glad that you have made such inroads to reclaim your garden. Do keep us posted on your latest!

What a delight to hear from you, and thanks SO much for your great comments. Ditto! I have missed you, too. It's so good to be visiting again, and to have created a more recent post! Hugs, and have a great day!! :-)

Anna said...

Å, vad jag blir imponerad av ditt ambitiösa nässelprojekt... Fast jag fastnade först för ditt fina filtade sidhuvud!

Nice to find a fellow Swedish blogger in English!

Homeleightigger said...

Your new Vegetable gardens looks a treat Jeanette - all that digging out of the nettles was well worth the trouble. Have you got the compost on yet - have you planted any vegetables.... ? Val