Dogs in the Garden

By: Anne Corke

Jun 13 2011

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Category: Gardening

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Focal Length:23.752mm
Shutter:1/0 sec
Camera:Canon PowerShot SX10 IS

For those of us owned by a dog (or dogs), having a beautiful garden can be a challenge. Our current resident canines are Danny and Sophie, two Lakeland terriers. Anyone who knows terriers, knows that they are rather busy. Sophie and Danny patrol the garden throughout the day and usually hold Lakie races each evening. The five gardens in the backyard are not serious obstacles to a couple of hyperactive terriers. In the first laps of the race, they circle the yard, turning around the apple tree at the south end, ducking under the picnic table, leaping up one side of the deck and down the other, skirting the railway garden at the north end, then around the west side of the island bed and back to the start/finish line. However as the race progresses,  they begin to take shortcuts through the gardens in efforts to cut one another off at the pass! The island bed is bisected by a path which makes for some pretty exciting figure eight racing. Unless there is an intruder in the daylily garden, they usually respect it’s boundaries. But the railway garden is another story. Ever since it was dug, the dogs have wandered through it. Sophie, who doesn’t like to get her feet wet with morning dew, actually walks along the tracks. (Perhaps she was a hobo in a previous life!) In any case, when the racing action heats up, the railway garden seems like the ideal place to cut your corners! Luckily, most of those plants are pretty tough (bugleweed, foamflower, coral bells, grasses and daylilies) and/or prolific self-seeders (flax, brunnera, balloon flower). Ironically, our terriers (earth dogs) have never taken an interest in digging in the yard, so we dodged that bullet. There is still the matter however of poisonous plants. This is usually only a problem with puppies, but, just in case, we allocate those plants to the front gardens. And so, in conclusion, I would say that dogs and gardens can in fact coexist quite happily. Just stick to informal gardens so no one will notice the skid marks and the shredded annuals! Happy gardening!

Copyright 2011 Anne Corke

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