Gardening Can be Murder

Over the almost forty years I’ve been married my husband and I have engaged in a divide and conquer theme. This means each of us became CEO in areas of our life that we have a natural talent for, enjoy doing or are frankly just better at.

Now, sometimes we have handed over areas of responsibility. For example, early in our marriage I paid all the bills until I told my husband that job sucked and I was quitting. It was most certainly a job that I didn’t have a natural talent for since I have a habit of transposing numbers. Which is not exactly what you want when balancing a checkbook.

There have been other times when we’ve handed a responsibility back and forth. This has occurred most with lawn care. My husband was the keeper of the green until we had children. But when I discovered the amount of alone time mowing provided I, with ardent enthusiasm, took over that task.

Ah, the joy of putting on my hearing protection earmuffs and just zoning out while mowing the grass. Meanwhile my husband was inside wrangling our kids while I blissfully couldn’t hear any of the drama. Was it any wonder I pushed the mower very, very, slowly.

But over time my husband has been encroaching on my turf, attempting to reclaim some of the yard beautification efforts. Most recently he’s been seduced by English gardening shows where seven-foot-tall hollyhocks, lady’s mantle, and foxglove form enchanting milieus that scream English country house – and murder.

Yes, murder because it seems like every other Agatha Christie novel had someone being killed with foxglove from the garden. For those of you not into poisonous flowers foxglove is used in the heart medication Digitalis and can be fatal. Even better for killers, foxglove mimics a heart attack so the chances of getting away with murder are quite excellent.

When I excitedly told my husband I was all in on trying to have a small English garden I did share that tidbit about foxglove. I was thinking he would be impressed by my breadth of knowledge but instead he acted a little scared. I was tempted to ask him if he thought I might try to kill him one of these days, but I decided I didn’t want to know that answer.

Last week we began phase one of our garden. It started with an impressive workout called hauling 30 soil bags to our backyard. After that my husband and I had to work together to build several elevated raised garden beds. It did not go well. Primarily because I’m more of a who needs instructions kind of gal while my husband actually seems to enjoy reading the instructions – at least twice.

Our two dogs sensing that the sniping at each other was going to escalate to the “neighbors outside in their yards might hear us bickering level” sought refuge in the house. Our cat, though, stayed right in the thick of it. Actually, getting a front row seat by perching himself in a wheelbarrow and dare I say giving us flagrant side-eye the entire time.

At some point in our garden “discussion” I looked at my husband and said, “foxglove is starting  to look pretty good right now isn’t it.” His reply was a pithy, “no kidding.” Fortunately, crisis was averted because between all the instruction “debate” we, and by that I mean mostly my husband, got the beds built.

Now all we have to do is plant the seeds and wait for the flowers to bloom. And just in case you’re wondering, we did not plant foxglove. We both decided to go with flowers that haven’t been featured as the instrument of murder in mystery novels.


The spring is a perfect time to dig into a new book and I have four that I highly recommend. 💚 There’s Empty a “laugh till you cry” menopausal revenge adventure. (Yes, you read that right menopausal revenge. It’s a thing.) Back to School is a hysterical read for any mom who’s experienced elementary school parent drama. Trouble in Texas is a tall tale of what happens when a daughter lets her septuagenarian mom enlist her in a wild scheme that could end up with both of them in jail. And Four Seasons of Snarky is full of short stories (perfect for the person who doesn’t have much time to read) that feature tales of suburban revenge.  😉

Please click this Amazon link to experience the fabulousness. 😘