Here’s what I like…I like to putter around with plants. I like to pot them and water them and watch them grow…or maybe just watch them stay alive.
I have a small triangular shaped bed in the front of my house. When we moved in there was a tree in the center of it, but it was really messy and blocked a lot of sun, and we wanted to brighten up the place so we pulled the tree. And, suddenly, I had a little patch of dirt to call my own. We had a huge backyard that I never did anything in, mind you, but this little triangle became mine to experiment with.
And experiment I did. I learned about different flowers, what looked good together (though I fully admit to putting in what I liked and letting it be wild, hang the symmetry!). One year I threw in a handful of wildflower seed…nothing bloomed, very depressing. During xmas, when most of the plants were dead anyway, we’d put potted pointsettias all around and a lit up reindeer in the center and call it day. I remember a year that my husband went away for the weekend, and when he came back the garden was full of snapdragons, his favorite, a little surprise I concocted for him and he enjoyed. I tried to get my son involved, but he really wasn’t interested. He would occasionally go to the nursery with me and pick out stuff he liked, but that was the extent of his involvement. One year my dear friend Margaret died, and she bequeathed me some iris bulbs. Two, I believe. I planted them in my triangle with absolutely no knowledge or faith that they would grow. Well, I’m sure it’s no surprise to real gardeners that my little triangle has been taken over by iris over the years. I’m not even good about splitting them and all of the stuff you are supposed to do…they just grow and spread. I now have to put in other plants around and under them in the spaces I have left. I love it though…every year when the first one blooms I remember Margaret, her wisdom, gentle grace and indomitable faith and it brings me joy. (They also bring me confusion, because I still have no idea how purple iris, spreading, turned into orange iris? How does that happen? I had only purple iris and suddenly I have orange too. Weird.
I also potted plants and had them all over my patio. They needed to be shade plants and I would put them right outside a large window we had looking into the backyard so I could look at them from the house. I also had pots, mostly hydrangea, which I love, standing sentry at the front door, greeting all who entered.
I have a million memories around these pottings and plantings, how they looked, what they meant. I may not be a gardener in the biggest sense of that word, but I loved my little piece of the earth and what would miraculously happen if I paid any attention at all.
I write all of this as I plan to leave this house. Right now the little triangle is pretty dead. I had planted it and made it look so inviting as people tromped through my house deciding whether to buy it or not, but we have had a couple weeks of really hot weather and watering hasn’t been enough. I was looking at it on Friday and thinking how much I was going to miss it. I had a thought, well, a couple of thoughts.
First, my new place has one of my “must haves” from my vision board, which is a balcony…it is small, but it will be covered with pots of flowers, and that makes me happy. I may not be able to get down in the dirt, but at least my hands will get dirty, my watering meditation will be met and I will have some pretty flowers to look at out my window. I also know that I will actually split a few corms and bring a few Iris with me; Margaret has to stay with me, she does. But not all, I will leave some here for the new owners, in hopes that they like them.
The second thought I had was that I want to plant it once more. It doesn’t cost much, it gives me great joy, and it is a little gift I can give to the new owners, a little space of happy and bright and joy and love. A little triangle filled with hope and best wishes and lovely life. A Blessing.
Just like my life in this house that was once my home, and is now theirs.
A Blessing beyond measure.