Yesterday was a bit humid but moderate in regard to temperature. Really, just a nice June day. In the time of the evening when the air begins to cool but before the mosquitoes set in, Randa and I began trimming the roses by the porch. They have been particularly lovely this year, having responded quite enthusiastically to a drastic trimming early in the spring. They provided an absolute profusion of pink low along the east wall, a wonderful accent to the stone base and brick wall.
We worked together, snipping off the spent blooms and tossing them into a large trash can. Randa was more inclined to leave blooms that might have a day or two left before their shattering; I more followed the path of pragmatism that would rather sacrifice that extra time of wilted petals than come back for more trimming in a few days. I did, however, work my way around any forming buds, leaving them to show their colors after a little more sun and time.
It is a patient work, this culling out of what is dead and the leaving alone of what has promise. It is often easy to make the wrong snip, to take away what could have soon been lovely. It is easy, too, to overlook the brown crown of what was once a flower, leaving it dark beneath the leaves and green. In examining ourselves, in deciding what should flourish and what should be taken away, we should exercise at least the diligence of trimming roses.
And perhaps, from time to time, ought to get a second opinion.