I've been given a reprieve. Apparently I did not do much garden cleanup last fall, distracted as I was by a big California wedding and discouraged as I was with how the drought had ravaged everything.
I just didn't get to it. It can all wait until spring.
But the garden gods looked down on me and decided to grant a concession. Look, they said, we'll give you a week of really unseasonable weather right in the middle of winter so you can attend to some of the clean up. Do it now, and it won't be so daunting in the wet chill of spring.
So they sprinkled 60 degree weather on us for days, devastating the ski areas here, but giving me the warmth needed to melt the snow in front of my potting shed where my tools are.
Go, they said. Get the pruners and your gloves and cut down those amsonias. Get the clematis vine off the porch rail, and haul the broken stalks of asters out of the garden. Pull up the annuals, that's just sad to see those lying on the cold ground now.
You can do a little weeding, they suggested. The ground is damp and soft, not frozen.
The garden gods sweetened the deal with a day that reached 70. We opened the windows.
I did as I was bid, and got out yesterday on the last day of February to cut and haul and snip and tote and clean things up quite a bit. There is still more to do, but having these days of tolerable, even nice, weather smack in the middle of winter was a godsend.