And yet the chill weather outside is ideal for digging without overheating, the partly cloudy grayish skies won't bake me, and the ground is soft, damp, and easy to work. Leaves are down and I can see what needs doing. These are perfect conditions for getting at the one project I have been putting off for cooler weather -- expanding the edges of several gardens.
This is the weather I waited for all season, holding off on edging until hot humid summer was over. This is weather that rewards a day of digging in the garden with rosy cheeks and an appetite when you come in.
The curve of the bed under the doublefile viburnum needs to be expanded since the viburnum has grown into the yard. The strip of ground under the bottlebrush buckeyes needs to be wider, as they have grown out into the lawn too. Around the patio needs to be enlarged. The gardens under the white birches need to be made larger to accommodate the shrubs growing there. A little here, a little there.
Just small adjustments, but it involves digging and hauling away the strips of sod. Dirty work, hands and knees work, up and down work.
I think I lost my ooomph when I was resting up after my eye surgery in late October and didn't go outside much. Then it snowed briefly in early November. Then autumn seemed to be suddenly gone by. I lost my momentum.
There are rhythms to the maintenance tasks that need doing in the garden beyond what each season calls for. There is a physical tempo to putting your garden pants on each week and going outside. There is a pattern to puttering.
You can't keep up with all the little jobs out there by sitting inside writing blog posts and reminder lists.
I could always edge the gardens when it warms up in spring, after the ground starts to thaw and before the weather gets too hot again.
Maybe I'll do that.