“I appreciate the misunderstanding I have had with Nature over my perennial border. I think it is a flower garden; she thinks it is a meadow lacking grass, and tries to correct the error.” ~Sara Stein, My Weeds, 1988
To that quote I add, and Nature generally wins. But it’s April and the world is newborn. I’m in my zealous mode, clearing away the old growth and wintering over weeds from around perennial herbs, flowers, and vegetables, like asparagus and rhubarb, and seeking out the newly emerging seedlings to determine whether they’re friend or foe. Or something in between. If foe, then they must be gotten out before they smother the surrounding plants. But it isn’t that simple. Many of the plants are wanted, within reason.
Take larkspur for example, a beautiful flower, but will take over unless kept at bay and that’s the way with many of my cottage garden favorites. Sunflowers are wonderful, but if not curtailed will overrun the garden. A knowing eye and hand must make order out of would be chaos–an ongoing challenge. One mostly undertaken by me, with some much needed help from daughter Elise. This year I’m also starting many seedlings in the small greenhouse husband Dennis built me years ago. It had fallen apart but he recently restored it; I’m very glad to have the use of this happy space again. So far the gardens look hopeful and are bursting with promise. I pray the weather will be reasonable this year. And we dodge the frost tonight.
Despite all the challenges, creating a garden is inestimably worthwhile and blesses everyone it touches. Go and plant something. And if you must wait until the snow melts, you have my sympathies. Spring is late but has arrived in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.
“Gardens are a form of autobiography.” ~Sydney Eddison, Horticulture magazine, August/September 1993
“You can bury a lot of troubles digging in the dirt.” ~Author Unknown
“Many things grow in the garden that were never sown there.” ~Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia, 1732
“In my garden there is a large place for sentiment. My garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams. The thoughts grow as freely as the flowers, and the dreams are as beautiful.” ~Abram L. Urban
“I think that if ever a mortal heard the voice of God it would be in a garden at the cool of the day.” ~F. Frankfort Moore, A Garden of Peace
“One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it provides.” ~W.E. Johns, The Passing Show
*Images of my garden(s) by my mom and daughter Elise