It seems to me that quite suddenly we are smack dab in the middle of May.

The landscape is greening up, perennials are starting to bud and bloom and baskets and beds of annuals adorn yards and businesses. Nursery parking lots are jam-packed, as are the garden departments in the big-box home improvement stores.

Here in northern Colorado, it’s time to get out in the yard and clean things up.

Time to organize and plant, spread new mulch, get the last of the dead leaves and winter detritus picked up, and clean up the lawn furniture.

In other words get ready for summer, because ready or not, it’s coming.

I’m a little behind on the getting- the- yard- ready- for- summer front.

Truthfully – I’m more than a little behind.

My first gardening experiences were in Wyoming where savvy gardeners didn’t even think about planting anything until after Memorial Day. That timetable is permanently etched in my brain.

And now that I live in Colorado, and have done so for decades, I’ve learned that it’s quite possible to inch that hard and fast planting deadline up a little. Get things in the ground after Mother’s Day became my Colorado mantra.

I’ve always felt nervous for those brave (or foolhardy depending on your point of view) souls who planted on Mother’s Day. As far as I was concerned they were tempting fate. Playing roulette with Mother Nature. The words from a long-ago television commercial for margarine echo in my head: “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature.”

I seriously took it to heart.

This year things are different. The calendar says May 10th. We’re coming up on Mother’s Day this weekend and yet all over town, pots of annuals are sprouting up. Even the city has planted the beds in Old Town. I figure they have to know for sure that the frost date is past.


That puts me really behind.

We had dinner last night at one of our favorite local restaurants and while I enjoyed my meal, what I really noticed were the gorgeous hanging baskets on the patio and the huge pots of annuals at the entrance.

Inside my head, the little kid that follows all the rules is practically screaming, “It’s too early people! What’s the rush?”

The calmer, more rational part soothes me by reminding, “There’s still time. You can plant your garden on your own schedule.”

Mostly I believe that. Except when that little kid starts screaming and I start to panic.

You may wonder how a simple essay about gardening has morphed into something akin to The Three Faces of Eve.

Welcome to Jean’s World!