Often I’ll go outside and just place my hands on the soil, even if there’s no work to do on it. When I am filled with worries, I do that and I can feel the energy of the mountains and of the trees.”
― Andy Couturier, A Different Kind of Luxury: Japanese Lessons in Simple Living and Inner Abundance
I have often thought about writing about the gardens we have here and so I may give it a whirl this winter. After all, it may inspire me, when confined, to think about why we tolerate the confinement. It is still fall and we are now in the middle of our second snowstorm.
The backstory on this garden: when I first moved here, I said, “New husband, I need a garden of my own.”
“Ok, how about that one.” He pointed to a row of flowers, three tiers of unorganized, tall flowers that abutted the clothesline. The clothesline stretched from this area to the barn and faithfully, Barbara (see December 7 post) put her laundry up to dry several days a week.
I plotted my garden out and I bought lots of plants…as I recall, one season it looked really good, but then…reality hit. Reality being work: the work I attended to every week, my job; the housework and grocery shopping on weekends; and the world of weeding. It felt too big and so, I believe eyeing its potential and my subsequent abandonment during a few summers, the new husband, who was not so new and had summers off, said: “I know it is a lot, if you don’t mind, I can take it over.”
In came the variation of plants, the bench, a little pond, yellow tulips, and a Japanese Maple, not all at once, of course. This picture is pretty close to how it looks today: fourteen years later. It is lovely. I can’t begin to name all the plants. But for me, it is where I learned how wonderful it is to dig in the dirt on a rainy misty day and see fushia colored flowers and my beloved peonies bloom.
Sadly, Barbara died shortly after this garden was finished. The garden then looked more like a template of things to come. The last place I saw Barbara was on the bench pictured above. She then went in to watch the US Open. That night, a short two days before she died, she called a friend and expressed a tremendous sense of peace sitting with my husband and I that day.
As if everyone she loved was right there with her.
This is the central garden and I will probably revisit it in these posts..
photograph & content: firstname.lastname@example.org
quote under photograph from Goodreads