Right now my climbing roses are absolutely gorgeous. There are no bugs, no black spot, just vines heavy with pink roses.
Yesterday, John and I pulled out all the grape vines on the back fence. Sadly, this was probably it's best year but those white grapes were only for the birds and well maybe a home wine maker if there was one here.
We unearthed a beautiful little red climbing rose that had been struggling to find a place to grab on to with the grape vine taking up all the real estate.
The last of my Peony's came into the house and I trimmed the bushes back.
That was the easy stuff. The hard part was weeding the Thistle and volunteer Walnut trees out. We've had wonderful growing weather so far this Spring & Summer. Although, some parts of the state are starting to worry about flooding, it's been enough rain and warm temperatures to get everything growing quickly. I swear you can see the corn, in the fields, growing if you stand still.
Anyway, it was hot and muggy and I pulled and yanked and swore at the weeds, myself for letting it get like this and just general good sailor swearing. Grandpa and Riley were in the pool so they couldn't hear Grammybea. I got about half of the garden paths relatively cleared. That means that I can actually see that there is a path, I can go back and hit it with weed killer and then mulch. The rest is still a work in progress.
Today, I can feel the stiffness in my shoulders and my wrists. Today, it's just a day of spreading some mulch around the newly planted Apple trees and the replenishing around the old ones.
My mother didn't garden. She didn't have time and certainly not any interest. Her mother didn't garden. I'm quite sure my grandmother didn't because she was blind and lived in a nice house with a tiny tree shaded back yard. I can't remember seeing my Grandmother on my father's side garden either.
My great Uncle Harry was the first one to show me a book about Wildflowers and take me on walks to look for flowers that matched the pictures in the book. I couldn't have been more than six years old, if that.
I will say that I seldom care what a flower's name is but it's the color, height and texture that interest me. I love to see a soft, gentle, golden yellow, Daylily with spreading arching dark green leaves, next to a plant with tall purple spiked and short rounded leaves. A plant, I sadly can't remember it's name.
I do remember, when visiting my Grandmother Beatrice that I was allowed to play in the backyard of one of her neighbors. I say play but the tiny little brick enclosed back yard was absolutely wall to wall flowers, with hardly any walking around room. It was the SECRET GARDEN before I even knew about a book with that name.
It was thick with flowers. I don't think a weed could have come up in there if it wanted to. I think she probably grew everything from seed. There was no order and if I remember correctly no real design either. It looked wild but beautiful.
I was allowed in because I didn't do any damage to anything. I generally found a place to sit with Daisy's next to me towering over my head and just looked at the flowers.
I know, for a fact, that I hadn't ever really seen such color and shapes in such masses before.
My Grandmother didn't understand my love of that garden. She would walk down the street and ask her neighbor if I was bothering her. She would shake her head at me and ask me why I wouldn't go find somebody to play with. Then she would mutter to herself about "Jean's daughter" and go back inside.
I don't know if all only children have vivid imaginations. I do know that before this generation, only children learned how to entertain themselves. It's different now. With technology childhood is different. But, "in the old days", only children or children whose siblings were spaced farther apart learned how to create.
We created playmates, we created environments, situations and our own little worlds.
For me, sitting on the earth, surrounded by masses of colorful flowers meant I was now in the secret world of the little people. If I sat quietly enough I would see them start to peek out at me from behind a Delphinia. I would see them putting Hollyhock blossoms in their hair. Or drinking water from a Bellflower.
So, today, look around your world, your landscape. Look through the eyes of a child. Give yourself a break from the grownup world and just be small again.
Just for a moment.......