California poppies

When my son was a baby, we rented a tiny mobile home. It was on a street filled with mostly retirees. The lots were perhaps 15 feet wider than the house on each side, real postage stamp lots.  I had spent hours tethered to the baby monitor, listening for him as he slept, while weeding this little patch of ground outside his bedroom window.  Then I planted seeds.  I only planted poppies (our state flower) and lupine (because it is hugely purple :)) and as the plants grew, I would rock my son and gaze out at the planted bit of ground. Time passed and the plants grew.  When they bloomed……absolutely gorgeous! The man next door would occasionally weedwhack his grass.  No concern of mine, except he would do it when my son was napping. I took to taping a sign in the window, proclaiming “Baby sleeping”. This worked fine, until one day,  I forgot the sign.  The baby was sleeping, and the weed whacker got busy. I went to the window to put up the sign and to my horror, the neighbor was merrily whacking down all my poppies and lupine! I flew out the door and finally got him to quit.  In that short bit, he took out more than half my plants.  You see, state flower or not, people oftentimes regard them as wildflowers = weeds 😦  He was offended, he thought he was doing me a favor by getting rid of the “weeds”.  My little patch of brilliant orange and purple………I didn’t get a photo of it, I was going to do it that afternoon.  I never could look out at it without feeling terrible.

Why people do things is oftentimes beyond me.  But it is what makes us all different, unique creations.  Julie had posted on Carol’s blog, about once finding that the neighbor had cut down a lilac tree on the property line and she about had a stroke.  I totally understand!


I was going to say that the poppy incident would not have been as traumatic to me if  I hadn’t already had this happen………but not true.  It would have been just as terrible for me regardless.

Years before, I lived on the top floor of an old house.  The second floor had been added or rather expanded on sometime in the 1940’s.  There was a 4 foot roof all the way around.  It was a lovely perch, set back from the streetcorner.  The perimeter of the house was a 4 foot garden strip.  On the side my front door was on, the landlord told me I could plant flowers, whatever I wanted to do was fine.   I was gone from 6:30 am until sometimes 6 or 7 pm, driving over the hill to work.  At first, it was in Santa Monica, then we moved our office to Culver City.  Point being, I was gone a LOT.  But I loved to garden and was thrilled to be able to  have an area to work in.  After work for most of that next week, I planted and tended, watering and spiffing things up.  I was so happy, it looked so nice!

Imagine how I felt, when I returned home the next night, to find a worktruck parked on the lawn, backed up to the roof.   Unbeknownst to me, the landlords had arranged to have the roof redone.  They had not mentioned this to me obviously!   The piles of old asphalt shingles lay in piles, all on top of what had been 25 feet of lovingly planted new flowers.  I for once was speechless.  Agh!

All the flowers  were crushed, and no one said a word to me.  Money was not an issue then and I dug up all the dead plants and did the whole thing again.  I don’t think the second time around was as neat, but I did make a roof garden as well.  I had dahlias there….I should look into those again.  Lovely flowers.  I bet chickens would eat them though.  Hmmm.

I better get busy, finish chores and get dinner going.  The wind is trying to blow anything it can away.  Too exciting, and I don’t like