Neglected is possibly the worst word you could use to describe a garden. It happens for many different reasons but the result is the same: weeds growing unkempt and uncontrolled while plantings get covered. It is quite possibly the most frustrating thing a gardener has to deal with but deal with it he or she must...eventually.

As I write this post my head is throbbing from a sinus cold that began last Wednesday. But that's not all. Prior to my cold all three of the rest of us had to deal with it in sequence. It all started with our youngest and a small bout of pinkeye. Then my wife came home with something that we suspected was strep throat but tested negative. The youngest one again got the brunt of things with the sinus cold from my wife which then transferred over to my oldest daughter. I really thought I was out of the woods (I shouldn't count chickens...) but Wednesday it got me really good. We've been dealing with illnesses of one variety or another (who knows which?) since June 5th. Add to that the two weeks of morning swimming lessons for my oldest daughter with the unbearable and unseasonably hot weather and you have a recipe for garden disaster...neglect.

The garden I am most ashamed of is in the back in front of the shed. I really have some great plants in there like coneflowers, Russian sage, Shasta daisy, 'Shenandoah' switchgrass and crape myrtles...but you would never know it for all the crabgrass, Johnson Grass, a multitude of malevolent weeds. I did have a Saturday last weekend to get a few things done but I chose to expend my energy on the vegetable garden instead. It was a good choice since the garden needed maintenance and is now in decent shape...not perfect...not by any means...but decent. This week the yellow squash started producing and I harvested the first cucumber while the first ripe tomato is only a couple days away!

I'm not writing this to rant about the randomness of life to take you away from what you really would like to be doing. It's more to say for those of you who are also agonizing over not being able to get everything done you want to do in the garden that it's OK. A little neglect can be overcome. It's frustrating but garden neglect can be dealt with eventually.  It's not fun to spend a day outside in 95 degree heat (+ unbearable humidity) to weed the garden. The work will have to wait until the temperatures are cooler which hopefully will come next week. Compared to the temps we've been having the predicted 86 degrees will feel like fall. Until then we'll just have to grin and bear it. Now if you'll excuse me it's time for more sinus medication...ugh...