Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Picking a Picket

For years, our main vegetable garden has been surrounded (and somewhat protected) by a traditional white picket fence. Then, as the wood deteriorated, woodchucks discovered they no longer had to tunnel under the fence or vault over it; they could chew their way through. I'm now faced with the task of sinking new posts and cutting some 250 pointy pickets. Just as difficult is deciding on a new color. I bought three gallons of a clear, straightforward blue-- just a few shots of pigment in a white base. But asample picket (shown in the center) struck as too perky. I tried adding a tad of the chartreuese left over from our exterior doors (the picket on the right), but it looked too tamely Colonial. In contrast, the original picket now struck us as attractively cool and crisp. To bump up that side of its personality, I stirred in a little red acrylic paint, arriving at the picket on the left. That's the one we've decided to go with, adding a border of blue plantings this fall--hydrangeas, Mertensia, iris, sage, ageratum. Curiously, when a cloud passes over the sun, the three pickets look nearly identical, making this chromatic fussing seem silly.

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