Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

Think there's nothing to do
In the garden
In the thick of winter?

This is the best Time to
Imagine and Plan and Dream!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Don't Be A Bear

It's easy today to hide from winter.  Are you spending your time huddled in front of the computer, counting down the days until warmer temperatures arrive?

Here are some pictures to entice you step outside and enjoy the magnificent snow-show you are missing. 

Bundle up and go outside.  Beauty is all around us.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Snow Fairy

Be careful if you meet,
A fairy in the snow.
She'll cast on you a spell,
And never let you go.
She'll lure you far away,
To lands lost long ago.
Trapped in her fairy world,
It's all you'll ever know.

"Come faeries, take me out of this dull world,
for I would ride with you upon the wind..."
William Butler Yeats

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Birth of the Unconquerable Sun

The sun is a primal source of all light and warmth on Earth.
In winter,
as the sun takes its lowest path across the sky,
we languish in its absence
and seek other comforts
for our shorter days and longer nights.

We needn't worry.
As the Earth continues along its elliptical orbit,
the birth of the unconquerable sun is just around the corner.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Frog King

The snow has finally fallen.  I believe it's here to stay.

This year the Frog King chose to ignore the council of his Advisor,
deciding to remain above ground
where he could continue to survey his pond.

To his unhappy Advisor he said,
"In the depths of winter I finally learned
there was in me an invincible summer."
by Albert Camus

The Advisor did not approve
of the King's decision,
and took his post with a most disgruntled air.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

There's No Place Like Home

Black are my steps on silver sod;
Thick blows my frosty breath abroad;
And tree and house, and hill and lake,
Are frosted like a wedding cake.

From Winter-Time by Robert Louis Stevenson

Saturday, December 4, 2010

"No object is mysterious. The mystery is your eye."

When we only allow time for a superficial glance, we miss the wonders that await a patient, closer look.  Looking around my November garden, I spot something that still has leaves: a rhododendron.

Endless multi-coloured dots
speckle burgundy leaves,
wondrous as a starlit night.
Buds wrapped tight
 like an Egyptian mummy,
to be reborn in the spring.

"No object is mysterious.  The mystery is your eye." 
Elizabeth Bowen

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Winter Afternoons

There's a certain Slant of light -
Winter Afternoons -
That oppresses, like the Heft
Of Cathedral Tunes -

Heavenly Hurt, it gives us -
We can find no scar,
But internal difference,
Where the Meanings, are -

None may teach it - Any -
'Tis the Seal Despair
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the Air -

When it comes, the Landscape listens,
Shadows - hold their breath -
When it goes, 'tis like the Distance
On the look of Death -

Emily Dickinson

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Red Door

Only now that the flowers are gone,
and the fallen leaves have blown away,
am I able to appreciate the weathered hues of my fine red door.

Beauty is all around us.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Caught Red-Handed!

Walking through the garden making sure all is well, when I feel a small, but definite, thump on my back.

Guess who threw the first snowball of the winter?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Promise

Plants with plans, that's what my garden is full of.

This rhododendron is such a smartie. By showing me now, the buds for next spring's flowers, it makes sure I will protect it the whole winter long.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

I'm Thinking About Garlic

"If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed;
If in terms of ten years, plant trees;
If in terms of 100 years, teach the people."

If you're thinking about garlic, plant it now.

Monday, November 15, 2010

White Candles For Winter

" not a mere absence of colour;
it is a shining and affirmative thing,
as fierce as red,
as definite as black...

God paints in many colours;
but He never paints so gorgeously,
I had almost said so gaudily,
as when He paints in white."
G. K. Chesterton

Sunday, November 14, 2010

What do you see?

"Zen masters say you cannot see your reflection in running water, only in still water."
Elizabeth Gilbert

Maybe you should not be seeking your reflection at all.

I see a cold November day,
Seedlings who've lost their way,
A touch of rust on grey.

The rain that fell last night
Reflects the subdued light
Of a day that's dark and grim.
My thoughts turn within.

On this cold November day.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Child of the Trees

I have always felt the living presence of trees.
The forest that calls to me as deeply as I breathe,
As though the woods were marrow of my bone,
As though I myself were a tree.

From the poem: The Presence of Trees, by Michael S. Glaser

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Fire Engine Red

And you, how old are you?
I asked the maple tree:
While opening one hand,
he started blushing.
Georges Bonneau

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The View From Here

            The view from here
                is fall,
                  it's clear
                    that time has come and gone.
                      I stop while on
                        a garden stroll
                          to hear
                            fall's wondrous song.

Monday, November 1, 2010

November 1st, The Return of Sanity

Halloween gives us the opportunity to become someone else;
to toy with our dark side,
and enjoy the goosebumps
 that creep up our legs.

Now it's time to put the costume away,
reign in the wild imagination,
and apply some sort of discipline toward the towering pile of Halloween treats.

November 1st, the return of sanity.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Invasion of the Snow Ghosts

I feel a chill in the air.
The ghosts have arrived.
As they fall from the sky they glow.

Wait - those aren't ghosts, it's snow! 

Let the Spooking Begin

"When witches go riding,
and black cats are seen,
the moon laughs and whispers,
'tis near Halloween."

Friday, October 29, 2010

Lavender and Old Lace

The cold October air has brought a pink blush to the Hydrangea bushes.  The clusters of rounded pink and cream petals swirl together, transforming the dreary garden into a soft, romantic cloud.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Web of Opportunity

What are you building, dreaming, wishing for?
Plan it out, make it strong, place yourself in the centre.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The White Rose Breathes Of Love

The fragility and luminous beauty of the wild rose stand in stark contrast to the dreary decay that surrounds it in my October garden.  Just like true love, strong and persistent, it is the light that shines in an otherwise darkened world.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Things that go bump in the night.

It's time for ghoulies and ghosties and long leggy beasties
 and things that go bump in the night...

My spooky mailbox!

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Blueberries are Red with Embarrassment

What colour would you turn if you hadn't done your job and wanted to go unnoticed?

My blueberry bushes should be embarrassed - they did not produce a single blueberry this summer.

As Head Gardener, I am certainly not going to blame myself, so I blame the soil (not acid enough), the bees (not pollenating enough) and the bushes themselves. 

Much as I don't appreciate their poor performance I do admire their in-your-face fall attitude.

I went out this afternoon thinking I should just pull them out.   As you can see, they decided to end the season by turning fire-engine red.

Now they've made themselves too pretty to toss.

Interesting strategy.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Never Laugh At Live Dragons

My Dragon has not appreciated being relegated to the back of the garden where the tall purple loosestrife have tickled his nose and obscured him from view all summer.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Turning Garbage Into Gold

Right now we are closing the garden; cutting, chopping and grinding everything that is above ground and gathering it into one huge compost pile.

Although it is cold and messy on the outside, deep in the center of that heap grows a heat that will break down all that is old, transforming it into something new - into gardening gold.

Imagine if we could take our 'life' garbage, our fears and failures, disappointments and fatigue and mound them into one life-pile for composting.

Wipe clean the slate and start anew.

We can and should!

Monday, October 4, 2010

A Rose By Any Other Name...

This is the picture of the seed head of a clematis flower.

Lit by the sun, it reminds me of Einstein's messy snow-white hair.

It is tangled, chaotic, cloud-like and brilliant!

Most of all, it is wildly beautiful.

Henceforth, it will never be simply "seed".

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Changing Of The Guard

Our wonderful seasons, marking the passage of time, forcing us to change our routines, giving us the mental nudge we need to reinvent ourselves.

Closing up, putting things in their place, more time to think, less time to squander.

As Mother Nature moves summer into fall, I move along with her.


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