For this posting I have a guest writer, my old friend the Garden Curmudgeon. Have you ever known one of those people who's rude, irritable, and talks about himself in the third person, but because you've known them since high school they'll always sort of be your friend? That's the Curmudgeon.
This past weekend the Garden Curmudgeon spent some time in an undisclosed neighborhood in Richmond to see how the cities residents were doing with their garden design and maintenance. The tour did not get off to a good start. Immediately upon getting out of his car, a lovingly restored 1972 Olds 98 Regency, the Curmudgeon was confronted by one of the sights that irritates him the most: paired pots that are too small!
"Don't people realize that size does matter?" the Curmudgeon thinks to himself. But it's not always "bigger is better." As evidence, the Curmudgeon points across the street and grumbles "there's nothing less appealing than an overgrown bush!"
A few houses down, the Curmudgeon finds something he actually likes - carefully maintained ivy espaliered on the wall of a detached brick garage.
Unfortunately, after admiring the design for a few minutes, the vibrating pattern sends the Curmudgeon into a seizure. After regaining consciousness, the Curmudgeon continues on his walk. The GC was torn on the next garden. While the he applauds the owner taking over a barren sidewalk strip to grow flowers and vegetables, this garden seems a bit messy to him.
Around the corner-another streetside vegetable garden. It's becoming a trend! With plantings arranged in bigger masses, the Curmudgeon likes this one a bit better.
But the front! Not exactly the seamless conformity that the Curmudgeon strives for in his own garden. The GC wonders if the neighbors appreciate this. Maybe sharing some freshly shucked corn will smooth things over.
A few houses down, the Curmudgeon came across one of his pet peeves - the grievous misuse of rock. Nothing is as picturesque and welcoming as a big ol' rock in a bunch of mulch, the Curmudgeon snarkily muses.
The GC believes you should have a license before you are allowed to arrange rocks. Speaking of rocks, the Curmudgeon is speechless when he sees this next one. "What is its purpose?" the Curmudgeon wonders.
The Curmudgeon remembers seeing something similar in an old Stanley Kubrick film. Perhaps the answer is on the other side. Accentuated with two tiki torches, the Curmudgeon expects to find a giant carving of an angry Polynesian god, or maybe a very long inscription in remembrance of a beloved pet. But the trip to the other side reveals...nothing.
Thoroughly confused by his exhausting Richmond garden tour, it only takes one final garden to send the Garden Curmudgeon running back to his Regency: