I anthropomorphize everything. The vineyard, the dog, my car, our piano. I know the piano is calling, "Please play me," when I've let dust settle on it for too long.
So as a new gardener with the best of intentions but little experience, it's impossible for me experiment with plants. I know a golden rule of gardening is to play, to see what works and rip out what doesn't. But I could just hear the the little roots crying, "Noooooooo..." if I pulled them from their dirt home.
That's why I was thrilled to spend a little time with some wonderful ladies from the Sonoma County Master Gardeners at the Sonoma County Fair, which runs through August 12. In the outdoor courtyard next to the Hall of Flowers, they have set up a lovely exhibit of plants that are environmentally friendly and easy to grow here in Sonoma County. Using the theme, "Tropical Sonoma County," they have put together a showcase garden with a variety of sun and shade-tolerant plants, in beautiful shades of green and purple, that range from succulents and trees to herbs and veggies. My daughter and I were knocked out by how beautiful a purple-striped eggplant and some green and maroon lettuces looked in the garden, and I was inspired to try designing a decorative bed out of edible plants.
Everything in the garden is clearly labeled and the Master Gardeners will be there everyday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. to answer questions. They certainly answered a lot of mine! The Master Gardeners also offer a variety of classes to help everyone from newbie gardeners like me to more experience gardeners.
Armed with their helpfulness and vast knowledge, I'm sure I will be able to create beauty around Gantz Family Vineyards while minimizing the pitiful cries of poor widdle plants.