Can we remember that every thought we have is a seed also and that we plant seed inside ourselves all the time? Our inner gardens have thistles and ragweed as well as marigold and sunflowers.
— Gunilla Norris, Author of “A Mystic Garde”, working with soil, attending to soul.
It’s been a beautiful spring if not an odd one. I can’t decide if it’s really more lovely than every spring or if it’s appreciated more after a long season of a hot summer, a cold winter, along with enduring separations from those people we care about. The rains have been plentiful and the flowers, trees, and grasses abundant. There are two raised beds packed with coreopsis swaying in the wind like smiley faces. Daisies are still popping up everywhere. All but one rosebush is in decline as is the clematis. I think mostly the rains and the wind have knocked their petals off. One rose bush is filled with hundreds of tiny red roses. I’m not sure what it is but its lush and beautiful and the wind doesn’t blow its petals off.
The zinnia seeds planted several weeks ago are about four inches tall and I can hardly wait to see how they bloom. The packet is called Cactus flower mix. Another packet of seeds is called Cut flower mix and it includes eighteen different types of flowers good for arranging. If only half of the assortment is successful, I will be thrilled. They are about two weeks behind the zinnia seeds.
This season I am adding herbs to the perennial garden. There’s something about an herb garden that seems peaceful even if you don’t really use them. They are so aromatic that when I squish the leaves between my fingers, I can hardly stop sniffing them and walk away. Rosemary and mints are most pungent.
My recipe for tomato pie calls for fresh basil, of which I had none. Recently basil seemed to be in short supply at the garden centers. I did finally locate a couple of basil plants and bought a few more herbs to start my new herb garden. I discovered a list of twenty different common culinary herbs in the seed catalog. Of those on the list I purchased two basil plants, a Cuban mint called “Mojito,” Greek oregano, both Fernleaf dill and Bouquet dill, and Flatleaf parsley at the garden center. The garden already has lemon balm and spearmint. The spearmint also grows wildly at the edge of the lake and produces an amazing, seductive, aroma when mowed.
While I’ve been busy working with the perennial garden, herbs and flowers, Sam is trying to get in the mowing during those short dry spells between rains. What we call the “yard” gets mowed and the fields get bushhogged. The turbulent storms have knocked down plenty of limbs, large and small. The burn pile is starting to look like a mountain. I like to think of it as critter habitat. One day Sam spent most of the morning picking up dried magnolia leaves downed by the night’s wind. The ground was littered with what looked like leather shoe soles. He came inside hot and tired and asked, “Do you think we need that magnolia tree?” I told him I’d think about it.
Email reaches Shannon Bardwell of Columbus of Columbus of Columbus at [email protected]