Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Garden Walk

Growing up, a child has many opportunites to learn from their Dad. But I'd have to say that the things I remember and hold onto the most, are things I learned from my Dad since I've been an adult.

I don't have the chance to see my Dad everyday, like I did when I was a child. Obviously I've grown up, gotten married, had my own children and pay my own mortgage now. But there is one way I've found to spend time with my Dad every day. About 2 years ago, I was chatting with my Dad on the phone one evening, when he mentioned that he had just gotten through with a "Garden Walk". I envisioned some fancy nursery tour, or a glamourous - ticket needed - type of event. Come to find out, the "Garden Walk" was simply a time to peruse his gardens at home and survey the changes and miracles happening right in his own back yard.

I believe I started the very next day. As soon as I was up and the kids were settled into their morning activites, I slipped on my flip flops and started walking around the property investigating the changes that were occuring. It's incredible what you see when you look every day. You don't miss a single bloom. You get the opportunity to pluck out unsightly weeds early on. You get to plan for the future.

I also find it exciting to look at my plantings and remember the story of them. The peonies I got from my sister and friend Malissa. The miniature irises from my Mother-in-Law. And, the myriad of plants from my Dad and Vicki. You see, my Dad didn't just share his love of the "Garden Walk"... he has shared actual plants that were dug from his gardens at his home. And as I partake of my own "Garden Walk" each morning, I think of my Dad. And I find myself wondering if he's doing his "Garden Walk" at the same time.

And now some photos of my latest "Garden Walk":

This is one of the plants my Dad gave to me. These buds will open into a wispy display of tiny white flowers.

Little violets. They look like little faces to me.

Probably my second favorite spot to linger. Despite the eyesore of a propane tank, I like how the landscaping turned out here.

The gorgeous leaves of the smoke tree - not yet in bloom.

This is a sign for our property that my Dad made for us.

Jack joined me on my "Garden Walk". And wouldn't you know... the first ripe strawberry! See what we would have missed?!

My spreading raspberry patch. Complete with "Beans" sign (my childhood nickname).

When we cleaned out the overgrown flower beds when we moved in, we found tons of irises.

The start of my plums.

Pink peonies from my sister.

Peppermint stripe petunias from Vanessa for Mother's Day.

Dad & Vicki turned us on to Ninebark shrubs. This one is just gorgeous.

The mulberry tree is getting its berries ready for me to make jam!

The miniature irises from my Mother-in-Law.

This is one of my favorite hostas.

Another flower from my Dad. Cardinal flower.

I salvaged this chair from the curb. Works great to keep my peonies upright.

This is an area we planted for privacy in the driveway.

I just love all the colors in the garden.

This is probably my favorite spot. Especially when the pink crab is flowering.

Our kitties like to sleep in the cool shade of the barrel in the summertime.

This iron gate was purchased at a flea market and I just love it!

How incredible is this color?!

I love peonies, and my husband does not. But I over-rule him here. They aren't in the way and what color!

I love to reuse old items so this salvaged enamelware pot (with built in drainage) works great in stark contrast to the vivid red geraniums.

Jack picked out these flowers because they looked like mowhawks. The white fuzz is due to our prolific cottonwood.


Jeanie said...

Sweet Shelly Beans! I loved what you wrote and the beautiful pictures!

Stephani said...

Beautiful garden pics! I too remember Dad mentioning his garden walks - though it came up for me when I asked him how he keeps his beds weeded so well. I can't say I do it as regularly but it was his inspiration that got me out there doing it more. I also have some plants from him as well (and others) - I love walking through my garden and remembering who gave me what and just enjoying the blooms.

Vicki said...

Thank-you BEANS. Wow what a nice way to say I love you. Brings a new meaning to "Say it with Flowers". I also printed off the whole thing so I could keep it for later. Garden Walks are a big part of Vicki and my mornings, afternoons and evenings. We enjoy them at all times during the growing season. It's wonderful to see how God works, how he supplies for us, and provides such beauty in the little things. Thank you girls.
Love You, Dad

Terry said...

Beautiful pictures and write-up, Shelly! Your gardens have turned out great --- and I have a vivid memory of all the huge weeds that were in those gardens when you bought the house. What an improvement! I'm glad you enjoy the whole process. :)

colette said...

Beautiful gardens and landscaping. One thing I love about gardening... each person's garden reflects their own unique style and personality. Love the enamelware pot!