Well, the sky’s not blue but the pink dogwoods are in their glory and when I look out my bedroom window I see the azaleas peeking through the petals of the dogwood flowers. If I didn’t know better I could be in Atlanta this birthday!
The final post of this birthday challenge is below. An interesting exercise to discipline myself this way. I know, tons of other bloggers post daily or tweet or whatever. Next challenge, to do this once a month moving through the cycle of topics. Wherever you are, whatever is blooming in your state, enjoy the day and thank you for your comments and sweet wishes and celebrating with me the whole week through. And now the fifth post.
A few years ago I had the privilege of volunteering in Cranbrook’s gardens. My second or third week, the Garden Mother offered me some rudbeckia she was digging up. I said as polite a no thank you as I could; rudbeckia is such a tenacious spreader that even the thought of introducing it into my flower beds made me cringe. Whatever she saw in my face obviously changed the assumptions of her newest volunteer, for her next words were, “Ah, so you’re a real gardener, are you?” Yes, I guess I am.
Our gardens are often filled with cuttings from one friend or another’s garden. The sweet woodruff cheerfully colonizing the shady patches at the edge of the patio was given to me by our wonderful neighbor Kay. She was moving away, uprooting not only herself and her husband, but some of her magnificent flowerbeds as well, sharing her mature perennials with friends. It’s lovely to see the bright green leaves of this well-behaved creeper and remember when Kay lived across the street. And by pure coincidence she now lives near my father and step-mother, so we still get to see each other.
A college friend of mine has hosta cuttings from our garden that she planted in her mother’s backyard some two decades ago. When she purchased her first home a few years back, we got together to celebrate, and there in her own garden were the offspring of our hostas that she had divided so long ago. Makes me smile to consider this leafy thread of propagation making its way from house to house, state to state, garden to garden.
The summer after I demurred on the rudbeckias, the Garden Mother was separating some magnificent Japanese anemones. These are wonderfully showy plants. Sprays of pink and white flowers, the shape of apple blossoms, cascade from slender stems that bob gently in summer breezes. When they’re happy, you know it because the flowers are profuse and keep a comin’. I was thrilled to be offered three cuttings.
They’ve now gotten a bit too happy and last year I divided one of the clumps and tucked it behind some azaleas. She was a bit peckish last summer but we’re hoping all will be well once spring is underway. It gives me a thrill to know that a small piece of Cranbrook’s magnificence is happy in our yard. Even better I was able to offer her some bee balm when I was thinning them. That something from my little patch of earth has sunk down roots at Cranbrook is way cool.
Looking around the yard, there’s one spot where no perennial flower has ever taken hold. The earth is too rooty from the Bradford Pear; it’s shady. Some daisies are persevering, but not really spreading. You know, I bet they’d look great accented with some…
And a great big thank you to my writer buddy and friend Diana D. for this lovely birthday bouquet of grape hyacinth. Diana, the color swoonful and I love it! Thank you.