Monday, January 20, 2014

Sweet Memories & Mysteries

Almost first harvest time... of Lughnasadh... of the grain, and what feeds me.... and so, I turn to the garden once more for inspiration, to find that almost every square meter of garden I've made holds memories of people I have loved, and places I've lived. 

Much of my garden has travelled with me throughout my life, and without the familiar scents and textures, I feel a little lost... Cuttings and seeds, saved from my own precious crops, and plants generously given to me as gifts, or passed down through families and friends, tell the story of me to myself... So precious is my small collection, yet to someone else, they may simply be greenery...

For instance, this wild-looking Penstemon, comes from a handsome plant by my mother's front gate, that so cleverly shaded the roots of her elegant, formal hybrid tea roses... I remember her fondly, working away in her front garden, each time I walk past this delicate little treasure.

And this little rose, was originally propagated for me by my mother-in-law, a wise plantswoman, who taught me much about gardening. She loved this plant because it was a French rose her husband loved, and remembered it growing in his own mother's garden in Guernsey. When I moved to this place, my dear friend propagated a new rose from the one I'd been given. It had grown too large to be transplanted, & is rather rare. The same friend, gave me an elder tree, lovingly grown from a cutting taken from her farm, when she moved to the city... Now I have a small orchard of them, all grown from cuttings, and each one producing the frothy white flowers I love for midsummer champagne, which she says is as a Faerie's kiss... Ha! So on the story goes, my garden history merges with hers.... 
 Another friend, years ago, was given a root cutting of this excellent red rhubarb by her father... I was fortunate to be the recipient of another piece, when she was dividing her plot, and last winter, I passed on 5 more crowns from my own thriving clump to my son, who now has the delicious ruby jewels growing in his own little patch of Paradise....
So, as you can see, there is much history in my garden, and in the gardens of all gardeners who treasure plants because of their associations, as much as their usefulness.

In every garden plant, there is a story connecting it to someone's life.... it may reach back through history... it may have touched the heart of millions, or just one... Such is the mystery of gardens...



  1. And in every memory, a garden
    Where all our weeds did grow
    But if we beg their pardon
    We'll find all the flowers there we did sow xxx

  2. my garden is very small now but still full of memories like yours. gardens are such special places. I love walking around the streets here viewing peoples gardens xxsusanJOY

  3. Lovely! We have oak trees here grown from acorns from my Great Grandmother's house. My Uncle has one too. I am busily growing on some potted seedlings that grow under them to plant out next winter. It is a very comforting form of continuity.