I know people will say “we’ve had all that rain“ but it is really dry. I was transplanting recently into pure powder.

This brings me to a subject I discuss at least once a year—hoses. I hate them, especially the expensive vinyl ones. No matter what they say, they always kink. I missed my calling in advertising. The Goodyear all-rubber are the best hoses you can buy. They do not kink, can be left out all winter, don’t mind a truck driving over them in the driveway and are under 30 dollars for 50 feet at Home Depot.

Nevertheless, a person still has to haul them around. It is by far my least favorite task in Garden World.

I would rather be weeding. OMG, speaking of weeds, I have some in the vegetable garden that are chest high. How does that happen? The poor little vegetables are barely to my knees.

I need to ring my friend Abigail Higgins to get the name of the heinous weed that has taken over the pea patch. It comes up easily but sticks to gloves and sleeves.

My ninebarks are in full bloom–there’s an underrated and underappreciated shrub.

I have a few cultivars: Summer Wine which has burgundy leaves and a pale pink flower. Coppertina with copper-colored leaves and, again, a pale pink blossom. My new favorite, though, is the common one: Physocarpus opulifolius. It’s simply loaded with white flowers and has lovely green foliage.

Several years ago, my friend, Marie, tossed some seeds of her Summer Wine into a pot, barely covered them and ignored them for a year. Several baby plants came up eventually. One was the common variety. We figured it was some genetic mumble jumble that caused it to revert back to the original. At any rate, I love it and will try to repeat her method when it goes to seed.

I grow a broccoli variety called De Cicco. It is an Italian heirloom from the late 1800s. It produces side shoots all summer and both the leaves and stocks are tender and wonderful. I have it and all the cole crops under a layer of tulle. It seems to be working to prevent the cabbage moth and its destructive green worm.

However, recently I saw tons of the golden soft-shelled snails on top of the tulle, trying to eat the plants through the fabric. Honestly, a person cannot win. This is the same culprit who is decimating your dahlias. I’ve had moderate success with the product Sluggo but find handpicking is the most fool-proof method. I’m sure we all have time for that unpleasant task!

The peas are coming in. We are beginning to pick and eat right in the garden. It seems early. I remember in the past that the Fourth of July was prime pea-picking time.

Well, the sugar snaps are loved by all, but I really like the true English pea. I grow Lincoln, Knight, Green Arrow and Tall Telephone. A lot of them ripen at the same time but I do freeze them for winter use. They are the one vegetable that really holds its own in the freezer. The flavor and texture are great.

Covid is becoming a big drag. Everything takes so long now. I will say I’m saving money. I think twice before making a stop for coffee or a sweet although I do miss gabbing with random folks out and about.

Eugene Robinson, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist from the Washington Post, made a great observation this week concerning police and their threat to black people. Dylann Roof murdered nine people at a Bible study in Charleston and the police managed to take him into custody alive. Not so for many of our fellow citizens for offenses such as a broken tail light, selling individual cigarettes, passing an alleged phony 20 dollar bill, or sleeping in a car at Wendy’s.

When will it end?