This was all set to be a walk-about of an Alaska garden at the end of May. That was before “Mr. Energy” aka the Last Frontier Garden hubby in project mode, planted ladders about the yard like perennials. Yes, you read that correctly…ladders. I had a lot of time to ponder ladders, I was parked on one for several hours on Saturday. Not at the business end, which would be the top, but the insurance end, which is the bottom rung. I was making sure Mr. Energy didn’t drop to his death, perched atop a twenty-foot bit of aluminum. Mission accomplished.
Some readers may remember that Mr. E. threatened me with painting the house after the last garden dustup. No idle threat, which I discovered this weekend when I stepped out of the house to work in the yard. Why is this ladder here, I wondered to myself naively. And this visqueen? (Actually, visqueen is known as a “temporary tarpaulin,” so that explains it’s presence in our Alaska garden…gotta have tarps, even temporary ones) And what are these wood blocks and holy moly, is that piece of cardboard on the Viburnum and Alliums?!
Like many people, I have learned to cope with unpleasantness by eating or shopping. Since those options weren’t available at the bottom rung, I decided to do a bit of day-dreaming. Blurring one’s eyes (or closing them, even better) for a virtual get-away is a good idea when the alternative is shouting, headaches, or giving up gardening altogether. I decided to dream about ladders…I know, slightly disturbing, but I hadn’t thought of a post idea yet, and ladders don’t get much love (or press). Check this link for info about different ladders, from the old trusty step ladder, to the more exotic cat, bridge, and turntable ladders. Our own three specimens, pictured below in a happy group shot, were the extension, folding (the one with Mr. E’s feet on it), and orchard (the wooden one with three legs) breeds of ladder.
Ladders aren’t the new kids on the block in the tool shed. There is a Mesolithic rock painting in Spain thought to be over 10,000 years old depicting a ladder. They left out the part whether the caveman’s wife was standing on the bottom rung or not. Maybe he placed it in her Mesolithic flowerbed and she is holding a club for when he climbs back down. And maybe he saw the club and stayed on the ladder. Sorry, letting my fantasy run away with me there….
Need to storm a vessel or building? Why then you need an assault ladder. Suited for, and I quote “covert operations such as sniper placement.” Wow, I never thought a ladder could sound so…James Bond. The other end of the sophisticated spectrum boasts the rope ladder. Maybe boast is the wrong word here. Just the sound of it makes me think of Tarzan or at best, the Swiss Family Robinson. A rope ladder is indispensible for those with no storage space or if one hopes to summit a roundish object, say a planetarium or something. I note that it requires more skill to climb than a “rigid” ladder and can “swing like a pendulum.” Which guarantees I shall never be on one, if I can prevent it.
Whether you love them or loathe them, ladders are as useful as tarps. A high compliment from an Alaskan gardener, especially one whose had her plants smashed. I feel no rancor, against the ladders, at least. Now if I can just get my hands on one of those sexy assault ladders….
Got any ladders? Are you a bottom rung-er or a top rung-er?