The peripatetic gardener (or, have shovel, will travel)

So despite the fact that I spend a goodly part of my week working in other people's gardens, I spent last Sunday…working in other people's gardens. Granted, I did get in a little time in my own in the morning, which was a novelty. I spent a few hours digging up and rearranging plants in preparation for the Chicken Coop Caper, which is scheduled to begin this weekend. 

(Side note: I had planned to spend Friday morning in my garden, but instead spent it cleaning out the garage, which was–how shall I say?–disgusting. I was briefly convinced I had contracted the Hanta virus thanks to all the mouse poop, but the wheezing has pretty much subsided. It is now as clean as it's going to get and full of coop building materials.)
So Sunday morning I dug up two caryopteris from the site of the coop, rooted out a couple of fairy roses and Knock Outs that encroached on the newly established vegetable bed in the front garden, and gathered some clumps of geranium. Then my pruners, plants, and I hit the road.
I started out at Amy F's, where I dropped off the caryopteris and the Knock Outs, despite the fact she tried to kill me with a shrub earlier in the week. (We were digging a large shrub that wasn't coming out gracefully, and she repeatedly knocked me over while attempting to both keep her footing in the mud and sever the roots. There was no joy in Mudville that day.) But being a big person (not literally, of course, I'm actually a small person, which is why she was able to knock me around so much) I overlooked her homicidal tendencies, donated to her ongoing garden redesign, squinted at the garden for a bit and brainstormed plant placement, and hit the road. 
I drove north to Christy and Tim's (parents of the fabulous triplet three-year-olds) to drop off the fairy roses and geraniums. They're selling the house, so I accompanied Tim to the nursery to buy some hydrangeas for curb appeal. Tim took over child care while Christy and I planted, then the girls took turns watering in the new bed. Slightly wet and muddy hugs all around before I got back in the car.
Then it was off to a client's house to do some garden coaching. We walked around to identify the many, many shrubs previous owners had planted and talked about what she might keep and get rid of. I taught her how to make pruning cuts and we limbed up the tree that kept smacking her in the head when she mowed the lawn. I was attacked by biting ants while pruning an overgrown shrub next to the house, so I ended the session barefoot, hosing down my legs and shoes to drown those little bastards. 
I finished up the day in squishy shoes severely whacking back the euonymous shrubs in front of my BFF's house. CAS's ex had sheared them for the last couple of years, and shearing just encourages huge, hairy growth at the site of the cut. When I was done with them, they looked pretty sad, but they'll leaf out again soon and be considerably better behaved. Two-year-old Calvin asked me thirty or forty times, "What are you doing?" and was somewhat displeased I would not allow him to handle the pruners; but he helped drag sticks to a pile in the backyard. CAS fed a me dinner, and I drove home to a hot bath and an early bed time. 
It was a lovely, muddy, satisfying day, but I think I'll spend this Sunday in my own garden. 

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Fraudulent Farmgirl
I teach garden and homesteading skills—the stuff your great-grandmother knew how to do. But if there's a faster, cheaper, or easier way to do it, I'll find it!By day, I design earth-friendly gardens for Spotts Garden Service. By night, I don my Wellies to become the Fraudulent Farmgirl. On my small urban homestead, I've ripped out the front lawn to plant vegetables and fruit trees, turned the garage into a chicken coop and grown enough strawberries to feed half the neighborhood.

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