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the garden of remembrance

On 15, Apr 2011 | 3 Comments | In the daily gardener | By All Year Garden

I walk tentatively on the foot wide dirt path between the flower beds, careful not to get scratched by the landscaping roses covered in clusters of red flowers. To the left, flanking the fence, cosmos and goldenrod find their way between the roses in an unruly jumbled mix. To the right, in the shadow of the hibiscus trees, grow care free gladioli and fragrant lilies, mixed with lily of the valley; wild strawberries and buttercups gently cover their feet and expand into every nook and cranny they can find. Above it all, an old bleeding heart arches gracefully over the moss roses. It only blooms one month a year, which makes it even more fascinating, a garden princess unlike any others, extraordinary. I can’t reach it because it is kind of in the middle of the border where the roses guard it with sharp thorns.

Many times I just sit on the ground and watch the little candy colored hearts sway gently in the wind atop a profusion of giant parsley-like leaves. There is a contradictory nature to this plant graced with such noble and unworldly blossoms but sustained by the most unsophisticated kitchen herb-like clump.

The flowers in grandfather’s garden are always in bloom: he is a consummate gardener and doesn’t let a day go by without caring for the flowerbeds, deadheading plants, picking a berry or two or planting something new. I spend many afternoons on the wooden bench in the shade of the grapevine watching him sweep the paths, aerate the soil, or just wander around to enjoy the flowers. I must confess that I am giving him plenty of stuff to clean up, since that garden bench houses my dolls, my fashion design atelier and my daily gourmet play kitchen, activities which create a copious mess.

So, as I was saying, I am walking on the foot wide path, in my old crochet slippers with soles made of yarn, in loving memory of my grandfather; in the garden of remembrance it’s 1974.

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