Art and Life and Gardening
The peonies are finished in our neighborhood. We feel lucky to have space for our one tree peony. Thankfully, our neighbors have several of the herbaceous type and we were the recipients of a large bouquet when they had peaked. When the flowers started to fade, I cut off their heads and floated them in a bowl of water just to keep the scent going. Even though the pink color faded each day, the scent carried on for several days. I just threw the petals into the compost today. More and more I'm appreciating what a creative and artistic activity landscaping gardening can be. I think I always knew it, but I'm appreciating it more as I get older. We've had a few hot days in a row lately, so I've taken some time in the shade with a cool drink and a few garden books. One is Rosemary Verey's, THE AMERICAN WOMAN'S GARDEN, published in 1984. I purchased it not long after that and still feel inspired by the stories of visionary gardeners. The photography is inspiring too. Tucked into this book was an article from the Wall Street Journal by Sara Lin (the date is lost) about Courtnay's Daniels 350 acre garden near Charlottesville, Virgina. At the time of writing, Ms. Daniel's garden was believed to be one of the largest privately owned gardens on the East Coast. Before turning to gardening full-time she was a trained painter and now looks at her work as painting with plant material. "It's a painting that's never finished". That's how Barry and I feel about our garden.
A new book in my gardening library is GARDENISTA by Michelle Slatalla (with the editors of Gardenista). The volume is full of kindred spirits and stories of how they developed their gardens--some very tiny and some grand. It's also a source book for garden furnishings, tools and expert advice. Just love this book. I've been dragging it around the house and outdoors since my sister presented it to me as a gift.
Here are four images from our garden. The snake is most recent.