That’s life

More often than not, an opportunity to be in the garden offers a time for reflection. I reflect on recent changes, our return from Prague and family. I used to say that all problems are solved in the garden. For me, this is still true, especially when experiencing loss. It is during these times of complicated thoughts, that the garden offers solace and peace.  Over the twelve years on the Mount, one companion has helped me dig, watched me weed, walked the paths with me and called out when it was time to go in. So when his time came a week today, it was very sad. Sarge, our fourteen year old cat, was a quirky character and a very personable cat. He was brave and fearless in his territorial duties – even venturing down a wombat hole.

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He now rests in the garden he loved.

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I guess that’s part of life. Nature overcomes all. For now, I continue to think of how fortunate it is to have a garden like this and animals to give it joy.

   
While I repot and re-plan, I reflect on the myriad  of relationships we share with others and with Nature itself. Let us use our gardens to reflect on that which is lacking in our world today – peace. I wish you this in your garden today. 

The Lilac Tree

In deepest darkest winter I often look out of our back windows and try to remember the lilac tree in spring. Now that it is in full bloom, it is most certainly a place of great serenity. A garden, even though it is hard work, is a place to find that peace and tranquility which is often lacking in our busy lives. As school teachers, we find the garden conducive to thoughts and ideas as well as a place of welcoming for our neighbours.

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20121112-211447.jpg The back deck overlooks this great tree.

20121112-211839.jpg We had the great privilege of meeting the woman who planted this stunning specimen. Susan was a nurse with four little children and doing it on her own without any formal horticultural experience. It was her elaborate combination of colours, scents and shapes which we tend. We are then custodians of her vision and her carefully orchestrated plan to create a place of calm.

20121112-212458.jpg I truly believe that we must devote time to nature, admiring each and every change in the garden.

20121112-212833.jpg This afternoon I spent time admiring the lilac tree from beneath its arching branches. It gave me a different perspective from each angle; it engaged all senses – it’s wonderful colour, its delightful distinctive perfume, even the currawong flew in to sing its distinctive song among its flowers!

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20121112-214035.jpg I hope you can find your own place to contemplate, even for a short time, leaving the hectic pace and place, for a moment in a garden, whether it be your own or a communal one. I leave you with today’s warming back deck sunset!

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Leaves of Grass

One of the most exciting things about coming back home is seeing the changes in the garden. We were both very jet lagged after twenty-nine hours in the air, however, our car had hardly come to a standstill when our older cat Sarge, came bounding from behind the camellias with his garrulous greeting! It was after copious pats that I noticed the tulips and the daffodils in full bloom and of course, the grass.

Yes, grass. As much as we loved our Italian escapade: the Medieval towns, the castles, the famous sculptures, the abundant artworks, the historic churches, after a time we found we missed greenery and indeed nature – maybe it was all that stone work. We did enjoy the Tuscan countryside via bus and some yellow roses protruding amongst the monuments, some nice potted containers, a balcony grapevine, many old persimmon trees and vine covered buildings, but we probably needed more back yards.

Now we have come back to our mountain home among the gums trees and the soon to be flowering rhododendrons. Apologies for the cliches! Perhaps the last words should go to Walt Whitman, “I believe a leaf of grass is the journey-work of stars”. I might have to look for that old John Denver CD. Can you guess which image is of our garden?

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