It's a triple-H (hazy, hot & humid) day with a "Real Feel" temperature that makes it too hot to spend hours outside working in the garden. So I've done my morning watering, cut some mint for a fresh batch of iced tea, and come inside for the day. While I count the hours until a dinner of fresh green salad, corn on the cob and watermelon -- all harvested, alas, from the farm market and not my garden -- I'll spend time on some of these Indoor Gardening Activities in air-conditioned comfort:
1. Finish (or at least make some progress on) my latest garden book, The Perennial Gardener's Design Primer. This has been featured far too long as "What I'm Reading Now" on my web page. It's a five-star book, but I've been slow and sporadic in my reading. I have a lot of other garden books on my reading list that I'm anxious to get to; plus, I want/need to know what's in it to do some of the other items on my list.
2. Get my garden journal up-to-date. I have a bunch of plant tags to process, adding the plant names to my garden lists. I also want to evaluate the journal as a whole, which is new this year and in the form of a three-ring notebook. I have some new components to add (blooming date records, for example) and want to consider going high-tech next year with garden software, an online journal, or computer documents in Word and Excel.
3. Flesh out my wish list of plants. This means gathering all the notes I've scribbled here and there, both electronically and via old-school pen and paper, and capturing them all in one place.
4. Catch up on my garden blog reading. I learn so much from the all gardeners who are more experienced than me and are generous enough to share their knowledge. And I get great ideas from the projects, plant combinations and garden layouts that I see when visiting other garden blogs. I mean, who could read a post like this without being inspired?
5. Do the online research that's needed for making decisions and solving problems. For example, my salvia in the side border has become overgrown to the degree that I will be embarrased to show it in the upcoming evaluation & overview post. I have to figure out whether it's best to cut it back, divide it, or move it somewhere else.
6. Create layout sketches of my garden areas indicating what's currently growing in each. Although that's documented by photo, I want to use some of the design principles I'm learning to plan where my new items will go. I'm no artist, but I think it'll be helpful no matter how rough the drawings are.
7. Review my garden catalogs and magazines. Some are awaiting their first read and others have been saved for a second look. As I gather my wish list items and coalesce design ideas for next season, it will be fun to see what refining (or additional) ideas will surface.
8. Do some task planning for the coming days/weeks and the upcoming season. Re-do my morning walk-about in my head and note the immediate needs. Think longer-term for fall transplants and other cool-weather projects.
9. Organize my garden photos. I have over 600 photos from this season alone. They're all tagged in Photoshop Elements, but I'd like to create a collection for each garden area, so that as the seasons pass I can easily track progress and changes.
10. Daydream. A favorite quote says: "... inspiration does not come like a bolt, nor is it kinetic, energetic striving, but it comes into us slowly and quietly and all the time, though we must regularly and every day give it a little chance to start flowing, prime it with a little solitude and idleness." (Brenda Ueland)
Of course, it's not possible to get all of these items done, or necessarily even begun, today. But I can focus on a few, using this indoor time to savor the past, review the present, and plan the future of my garden. Now all that's left is to get a glass of that fresh mint tea and begin!
Do you have a fun, necessary or helpful indoor garden activity to add to this list? If so, please leave a comment!