Thursday, May 7, 2009
I don't know when it started exactly...
I guess in my childhood. Both sets of my loving grandparents had vegetable gardens. There were larger or even multiple gardens when they and I were all younger and as they aged, then the gardens became one and the one became a bit smaller, but still a garden all the same. Then from as long as I can remember and probably before I could walk there were pecans to pick up and we used 5 gallon buckets as far back as when the buckets were still larger than I was. Grandma would sometimes provide me with an empty ice cream bucket for the blackberry picking, but she could have just as well sent me with the 5 gallon bucket for the blackberry expeditions as I ate much more than ever ended up in the bucket. Fresh from the vine blackberries are as much a part of me as running barefoot frome early spring to late fall and through most of the temperate winter inside the house, well until we moved into this old drafty 150 year old house about a decade ago. The drafts rather curtailed my barefooted ways and now of course with my foot injury the doctor is adamant about me wearing shoes all the time. Can you imagine? I mean yeah, I love designer shoes as well as anyone else from around the world, but for a southerner to be told to wear shoes as much as possible, well that's just about like a southerner being told not to fry chicken, and to not fix cornbread and baby lima beans to go with it, and we certainly cannot have fried chicken, cornbread, and baby lima beans without a tall glass of sweeeeeeeet tea with real sugar. Of course the irony is that I don't actually fry anything, which confuses the heck out of my Mississippi friends who have decided I must be an imposter because what true-blood Mississipian doesn't fry???
What is my addiction, you ask?? Well, not only did my grandparents have various flowering trees and such, my maternal grandfather liked to have a few rosebushes and I can still remember him planting the rose bushes some 30 or so years ago and he told me that this one particular rose bush was mine - that he was planting it for me right outside the sunporch. I'm not sure if it was then or much younger when I got to help plant various vegetables by dropping seeds in holes that one grandparent or another had dug a hole for and they must have been really patient with the goal being more of teaching me about growing things more so than speed of planting as you and I both know that getting a two or three year old to meticulously drop seeds in dug holes is about the equivalence of herding cats.
So, for as long as I can remember I have loved plants of all kinds. I love the itchy leaves of tomato plants, love tasting honeysuckle every summer, cannot eat watermelon without remembering my late paternal grandfather who had a bumper crop one year when my sister was too small to rember, but she and I had two watermelons a day that summer. I'm not even biased for or against wildflowers and clovers, as long as they don't take over the yard. The hub. tends to leave me a patch of clover growing in the back of our property. Then there are my roses and the row of crepe myrtle trees among various bulbs, bushes, trees, and such that we slowly keep adding to our little two acres. When I was still in high school, my hubby who was then my boyfriend told me he wanted to create a huge flower garden for me one day. I thought it was nice gesture, but didn't give it much thought. Well, the lilies start at the mailbox and the crepe myrtles line the drive, daffodils cover the front hill through late winter and phlox take over the hill in early spring, the antique climbing rose bush our aunt gave us covers about a 15 to 20 feet section of fencing, another climbing rose bush grows through one of the crepe myrtles, the mock dogwood bush is starting to grow and maybe it will get a good bit of height this year....then, there are the wild sunflowers that get to be about 8 - 10 feet tall every fall in the wildflower bed. They were in beautiful bloom the September we had a wedding for my bestfriend here.
One of my addictions, if you will, is plants from hostas to crepe myrtles to invasive tallow trees and even the three friends as I have named them - there's two old oaks and a box elder in a row that relatively divide the two acres into two sections. We hung tree faces on them a few years ago and even before we gave them the faces, they were already named the three friends. And of course, my addiction includes lots and lots of flowers. I love our Iris garden that blooms from early spring into summer. They're absolutely stunning. So, I thought I'd share some photos of the yard. There's lots of work that needs to be done that hasn't as the husband has been doing most of the maintenance by himself, especially the last few years with me busy first on completing that last degree and then the last 18 months or so have been something else. However, I have complete and utter faith that I willb be back out in my flowerbeds covered in dirt smudges wearing my straw hat and knee pads - it will just take some time.
Do share your flowers with me as well. I love them all. I love my clover patch just as much as I love the Italians the hub. bought me for Valentines a few years back. As much as I love roses, I tell him to buy me the whole bush instead of a bouquet of cut roses. So, I tend to get whole plants or trees instead of bought bouquets and then my bouquets tend to come from the yard, which is fine by me. :)