From the patio shadows facing dawn.
Tag Archives: petunias
Sparhawk Garden & Meadow
Last winter. I sort of remember my hands stretched out in front of me, blindfolded by fear, stumbling through the chaos of what had been and was no more. Then I found a teeny new studio. Which had a massive garden. Which seized my heart on day one. Which surely angels led me to.
Moi: It’s PERFECT!
Real Estate Agent: It is?
It is. I’ll let you see for yourself. It had exquisite bare bone established, fallen, gone to seed and cluttering dead branched shrubs and trees. I watered, fertilized, tilled, moved rocks, opened to sunlight, transplanted, and incrementally added every flowery small cheapo thing I could get from Grigg’s Nursery down the block. That was the new. The old have revived, blossomed, stretched arms to the sun. Brutally pruned cherry tree, hedges brush-cut before they could flower, tall reedy Oriental Lilies chopped to knee high are all now an hourly windsong thrice the height of yore. Just started really. This is the beginning and I am very proud. And yes, naturally, I painted the chairs.
Ah, August you darling you, let joy be unconfined……..
Terra Firma Flora Changes
My meadow got a cutting. I knew it was coming and sure it would break my heart, the loss of 3 foot high waving green gold lushness. Instead it is become a thrill of blanched silver honey that in moonlight and dawn is sand on beachfront. The dark green black bushes and trees at the river border, the orange curved bridge, shock it into compelling invites to explore, to walk across, to paint.
I have the good fortune of a very old, huge Bird of Paradise in residence at the meadow fence, my side, companion to a cherry tree, and a large pink blossomed mystery fruit tree. Two full birds have burst into bloom, I’d forgotten the brilliant electric blue spear at their center, tall enough to catch first light. Five, six, who knows, more fulsome stems ready to open. The fruit trees are in exuberant rising to blue sky following years of brutal pruning.
Right on the meadow side of the white board fence another massive plant, a rambling rose covered in small pink flowers. Easily fifteen feet up and sideways. I’ve pulled out all of their underbrush, dead branches and choking vines. The beautiful stems and bowers and bark are clear to see again. The morning population of birds gather, their tiny toes holding between the thorns until I replenish the feeder in the far garden, watching me, then zoom and dive and eat when I have stepped back apace to watch. I fastened a piece of dead blanched tree branch to the gate post and drew the rose branches that would reach to it. I’m making an arbor over the gate, it should reach in another few weeks.
Some orchids close to the bungalow are still in bloom others in rest. Spider plants with long arms flowering. The geraniums, reds, pale pinks, peppermint leafed, huge hot pinks, whites, are flourishing. Purple perfumed petunias and lobelia in hanging baskets. Apricot begonias. Blue daisies, a new blue hydrangea, apricot twist wallflowers, some exquisite tall vines with clusters of blue with yellow innards, rampaging nasturtium, ferns, orange daisies, primrose of every hue, gold and purple pansies. I uncovered a struggling wisteria that is climbing back up the trellis above the rock wall. The far borders are guarded by twelve foot stalks, great huge clusters of Pride of Madeira in brilliant blue, purple, and white. I can hardly stand it if it’s true but I think I’ve lost my hibiscus after a three year love affair, it was in continuous bloom. I’m hoping it will come back to life but it’s last bloom was over a week ago and the pretty lacy leaves are dry.
Great clusters of those very tall iris like plants that produce short-lived orchid looking white/purple flowers bisect the garden with some ancient, thick trunked lavenders, evergreen hedges, rosemary hedges, Breath of Heaven starting to make teeny pink flowers, ornamental grass, sea lavender, wild ginger. I don’t know what half the things growing around me are but intend to find out. There’s a forty foot pine about fifteen feet behind me, down the meadow, that drops impressive pine cones and lots of orange needles.
Past time to set up the easel. Thank God I’m not in Brooklyn.