Text and photographs are © by Ellen Spector Platt & Ellen Zachos, all rights reserved.

Monday, April 19, 2010


It's 7am on my newly replanted rooftop. The chokeberry (Aronia arbutifolia) is in full flower, promising a huge berry crop for fall. The dwarf lilac
'Bloomerang' is at peak
and will continue to
bloom throughout the
summer if I'm
assiduous about dead-
heading, a task I love.
All is serene.

But there's a snake in the Garden of Eden, a 150 foot garden hose, long enough to reach the far edges of the garden. It's just waiting for me to water in the transplants. I'm thinking of how I'll saw up the black bamboo and plant it in two containers, what I'll use to fertilize the roses, what variety of Monarda to order. I trip on the hose. I teeter and crash into the sharp edge of the new planter.Barely able to move without stabbing pain I finally go to my doctor, an avid gardener. He finds tears in the cartilage connecting my ribs to my sternum. We agree on the diagnosis, 'Garden Klutz'. He says he'll find the code in his directory of medical diseases so he can bill my insurance for the x-ray. He doesn't yet know if there is a sub-code reserved solely for New York City Garden Klutzes, but he rather thinks there is.

I've been called by many epithets, of course: ' herb lady', ' garden lady', 'wreath lady', 'lavender queen', and while still a psychologist, ' trouble maker' for whistle-blowing on the County Mental Health Administrator who was derelict in his duties.

I think 'Garden Klutz' has a certain ring to it. Daughter Jen says she once followed the Abbot & Costello routine and actually stepped on a rake and was hit on the head by the handle.
Have you ever been a Garden Klutz? Tell me please.

There's no picture of the actual accident. The image below is after the fall. Those planter edges look totally innocent don't they?


Ellen Zachos said...

Those planters look totally gorgeous! I'm not going to say it was worth it, but the garden looks terrific!

cindy said...

All I can say is "NICE!" Now youre' acting like me. I hope you heal quickly and painlessly!

Urban Gardens said...

Garden Klutz could be a blog unto itself! The planters are amazing--what a difference from some photos of your garden you posted a while back. Beautiful. Hope you're feeling better!

Unknown said...

My "favorite" klutzism is cutting the index finger on my left hand with the garden clippers I'm using with the right hand. Somehow I manage to do it once a season. -- Flora

Hilda M. Morrill said...

Feel better soon! All looks beautiful. Take good care!
I was recently stung by a bee. It was in the house and I was trying to help it return outside. *:-)

Betsy said...

I made it.I can't believe I'm commenting.

Shady Gardener said...

You've had a challenge in your rooftop gardening (remembering the construction, etc. from last year). It's looking great up there! :-)

Ellen Spector Platt said...

Thanks to all for your good wishes and comments on my 'new' roof. Some day when the roses are in full bloom I'll show off what I've done. Ellen Z. isn't the only one who can do shameless self-promotion.

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