A Gardener’s War on Weeds

Look, I went to a good liberal arts college and got a good liberal education. So when I started gardening and discovered those things called weeds, I soon learned to think about them in the good, liberal way.

“Weeds are not bad,” went the H. C., horticulturally correct, party line. “They’re guardians of the soil, rushing into bandage wounded ground. Weeds are not bad. They are plants whose virtues have not yet been discovered. Weeds are not bad. They’re just the right plants in the wrong place.”

It was groovy, hip, green thinking. I felt, you know, like, at one with the plants in my garden; the ones nature planted and the ones I planted. The was only one problem – I still had to weed them.

I learned pretty quickly that if I didn’t put a choke-hold on every chickweed, there wouldn’t be any harvest or flowers. After a few years of saying, “Weeds are wonderful!” – then slaying them ever chance I got, I began to reevaluate my thinking. After all, by this time I was an overtaxed, over- governed, hardworking adult –it was high time for my thinking to take a hard turn to the right.

Sure enough, I was soon knee-deep in horticulturally incorrect thinking: “Weeds are genetically bred to invade,” went this line of thought. “The more you chop them, the more they spread. Worse yet, they’re all illegal immigrants. Dandelions, crabgrass, clover, pigweed, lambs quarters, buttercup, mullein, planting, yarrow —not one of them grew here before the Pilgrims arrived.”

The only problem was, who wants to be mad all the time? Sometimes weeding can be kind of relaxing. Besides, isn’t thinning overcrowded letter starts a form of waiting? Isn’t leaving the wild daisies that sprouted in my border a form of gardening?

I’m really confused now. I don’t know whether I am a liberal gardener or a conservative one. When it comes to weeds, who should I vote for? What should I believe? I am beginning to think weeds must be like that crazy aunt in the basement .

Well, I don’t know if weeds are crazy, and I don’t think there’s any growing in my basement. But they most certainly are like our nation’s deficit —they just keep growing and growing and growing. And ain’t no kind of thinking, right wing or left, going to do anything to stop them.

To stop weeds, or curb our debt, there’s only one thing to do: Roll up our sleeves, and get to work!