Sam vs. the Garden

A close view of our cat Sam beside a rose bush in our backyard in Portland, Oregon

One of the previous owners of the house must have really loved this one type of bulb because they are literally planted everywhere around the house. Unfortunately that includes some places where they shouldn’t be, such as in and around my favorite rose bush (which is actually a few rose bushes planted together). While the bulbs do have a pretty flower, they also are so thick they keep the roses from drying out, leaving them susceptible to the black spot fungus which has plagued our roses.

So earlier this summer I dug out as many of the bulbs as I could from underneath these roses. I tried to avoid damaging the roses but it was slow going as many of the bulbs were up tight against their roots. Also because the thorns of these old roses are both large and malevolent. The going got even slower when Sam came over to help. The stalks were still attached to many of the bulbs, as I pulled a few of them up he started playing with them. So we turned it into a game, I’d drag the stalks through the grass and he’d try to catch them and knock the seed pods off. When the stalk was sufficiently flayed, I’d toss it up and he’d somersault through the air after it.

Eventually I dug up as many bulbs as I could and all of Sam’s organic cat toys were gone. I took this picture of him after our fun and games were over.

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