Gardening Journal, October 11th, 2013
Each spring the papyrus plant is put in the pond, right in the waterfall where it grows new roots and attains some height after successfully over wintering indoors. Each fall, therefore, I wrestle with a large plant reluctant to tear loose from filter foam pads and other (bagged) filter media, called bio media.
Getting ready to dislodge the plant I have to convince a frog to move to another one of his favorite spots. Next, while disturbing an ants’ nest I get a few bites. While untangling roots from the filter pads and bio media - just so I can take the plant out of the pond - I manage to make a great mess; getting wet and quite dirty in the process. When the plant is finally removed, it is time to take out the filter pads and bio media and untangle pieces of root and remove them once and for all. After all the pieces of roots have been taken out, the pads are given a good rinse and the bags of media are rinsed as well. Then, first pads then the bags are put back in the waterfall box and the pump is turned on again. The water flows, a bit murky at first, but within the hour it has cleared up again. Finally done, I cross off one item on my to-do list for this fall.
Now it is time to move all the planters from the back to the front of the house. Most of these plants will eventually overwinter in the garage, but as long as there is no hard frost in the forecast, I can still enjoy them as they bask in a sunny spot in front of the garage. After many trips back and forth, I cross job number two off my list.
Onward to the next task; it is time to check the orchids for hitchhikers, rinse the plants thoroughly and move them back inside. The orchids blooming right now will be moved to the garden window in the kitchen; the remaining plants are split up between garden window in the mudroom and the plant shelves in the basement. After many trips up to the kitchen and mudroom and down to the basement I have completed another job.
Finally I water all of the containers as they are dry after days of sunshine and little rain. There is still some more work to do: protecting the wood furniture with a coat of oil to preserve it from the elements and a cleanout of the little pond out front, but I will leave that for another day. For now, I got my exercise moving plants around and cleaning the pond, getting dirty in the process. It was a very good day!