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A bit of a water retention problem

There is no question that I should, by now, have dirt in my wine barrels. I should have them fully prepped, and I should be ready for Pilar’s seedlings to show up, since she swears they’re almost big enough to send home with me. In fact, I should probably already be growing lettuce. Or herbs. Or something.

“How’s that garden coming?” random people ask me, and I do what I am Very Good At as a Communications Director.

“Fine,” I say. “A lot of work to do.”

Or some variation of that. It’s my talking point, see? It does not give any more information away than is necessary, and it’s absolutely and unassailably true. It works, for now.

But soon, people are not going to be satisfied with a lack of photographic evidence of something akin to progress.

My excuse? There have been barely any weekends when I’ve been home AND have had time to garden AND it has not been raining since I moved into my new apartment. And really? This has not been a gentle soaking rain of the type that is lovely to walk in. It has been pouring rain.

Which led to the next situation. An email. From the property manager. Asking me if perhaps I needed some assistance. With some drilling of drainage holes.

See, there is an actual, professional gardener who maintains the communal plants on the property—lovely grasses that create a natural border between our wall and the next rooftop. And apparently he noticed that I had not, um, done anything yet with the wine barrels. And that they were collecting water at an alarming rate.

Me, being an unprofessional gardener, had not paid any attention to this water retention situation.

Also, though I lived in Africa, and Iowa City, and therefore know a thing or 35 about mosquitos, it did not occur to me that standing water? Breeds the annoying little buggers. Did this occur to the pro? Why, yes it did.

So I dumped the water over the weekend, and now the barrels are on their sides, drying out. The property manager has intimated there might be an engineer on her staff who just might be able to meet me for a drilling expedition. The kind, that is, that creates drainage. And once that little task is done, I’m bringing in the dirt.

4 Comments on “A bit of a water retention problem”

  1. #1 Heather's Garden
    on May 1st, 2010 at 9:22 pm

    I didn’t drill nearly large enough holes the first year on my single wine barrel. Go big!

  2. #2 Patti
    on May 2nd, 2010 at 4:27 am

    Oh thank heavens, I thought perhaps you (your body) was retaining water. At least you can empty the barrels!! I have done the body thing and it is much harder to get rid of!

  3. #3 inadvertentgardener
    on May 3rd, 2010 at 10:44 am

    Heather, good to know — thank you for that info!

    Patti, ha! No, no problems with that at the moment… :-)

  4. #4 A celebration four years in the making – The Inadvertent Gardener
    on May 6th, 2010 at 7:39 am

    [...] I know I said I’d spend a good portion of this week celebrating other people’s gardens, but sometimes, one has to stop and mark the passage of time. And I had hoped maybe to celebrate by announcing that I’d actually gotten my new container garden underway, but I admit I’m still a bit behind on that project. Apparently I’m marking the passage of time by not hauling dirt…or drilling holes in wine barrels. [...]

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