The Bluebell Story

I am pleased I found bluebells blooming in my garden today. I love their delicate lacy caps in shades of pinks and purples. I recall the day a garden friend gave me the plant; she invited me to her home and stood in the hot sun digging up gifts from her incredible garden. She instructed in her southern drawl as she handed me a clump of what look like a nearly dead plant. “You need to mark the spot where you plant this.” She is a true southern lady and looks the part in her garden hat. I took the plant skeptically. She continues, “It dies back after it bloom and you will forget about it.” And she was right. If I had not marked the spot where I planted the clump, I would have accidently dug it up. I am thankful I trusted my garden mentor when I planted what I thought was a dead plant.

She shared more than plants she also shared her wisdom. She is a certified master gardener and took the time to instruct a new gardener. This is more valuable than the plants she gave. She has become my mentor, and I believe I am successfully growing bluebells because of her. If I want to be successful, I need a mentor and possibly more than one. I have read about bluebells from books and the Internet, but do not retain the information. I do recall my dear friend’s voice as she instructed me of the care of this plant.

I have other plants she gave me, and when they come in bloom, I will hear her voice again, gently instructing me on how to care for them. Each plant she gave me is precious – because of the lessons attached to it.

All That Remains…

Daily Prompt: Meaningless

The season has taken a step over some invisible line and declared that it is now spring. A higher power has spoken, and the landscape has opened, sprouted and blossomed. The insects woke up, the butterflies have come out of their cocoon, and the sparrows have arrived to move into the birdhouses. I believe that force has spoken to me too.

I greet each bloom as if they were long lost friends. I take a minute to join the lenten rose as they bow their heads as if in prayer. I breathe in the intoxicating perfume of the hyacinth. I pet the mounds of creeping phlox and its neighboring candytuft. I dig around the leafy beds to see what is yet to come and I find the peonies first unfurling leaves and the star-shaped mound of the lilies.

My cherry tree is the star of the garden. It is in full bloom and humming with bees. The flowers are white rather than the faint pink of pervious years.  Maybe the frost had something to do with this. Worried, I inspect my beloved rose and notice a few leaves were nipped, but for the most part, there is little damage. I found my rhododendrons, and both did not survive.  I touch a nearby butterfly bush and its leaves crumble under my touch. The last frost might have been too much for it.

The loss dampens my spirit, so I force myself to turn around and view the garden as a whole. It is bursting with new life, promising a beautiful season. I record the miracle, as I do every year, with my camera. I will remember the perished plants in the photos I took last year and that will have to be enough.

Writing keeps the memory alive as well. It is the reason I attempt this daunting task of journaling – which at times is painful. The words I write will tell the story to go along with the photo. I believe it is my purpose to write about the garden and about my loved ones.  The garden helps keep life in perspective – my living metaphor.

I will fill in the holes left by the plants that have died. New life will continue as if they never existed. A few pictures and this journal entry will be all that remains. And one day it will also be all that remains of my love ones and of myself.

Winter Garden

DailyPost Writing Prompt: Shine

It is winter, and the sun refuses to shine long enough – warm enough. I spent the last couple of days standing at the window longing for spring or wistfully turning pages of the seed catalog.

I understand the rhythm of the garden and the need for all fallen seeds to incubate in the winter. I am aware of this same rhythm pulses within me – within everyone. The seeds planted, thoughts and teachings of my past – be it last year or just yesterday – need time to incubate and to take root. I must spend this quiet and dark time on reflecting.

What I reflect upon will grow in my soul’s garden. Each thought must be examined to determine its origin. Is it a weed? The bitterness weed spreads quickly and can wipe out a garden. I must pull up the weed before it takes root and nourishes the seeds that will allow my garden to flourish in the spring.

Winter is necessary.

I put away the catalogs, close the curtain and settle down with my journal. It is time to concentrate on a different kind of garden.