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January 14, 2008


Heather @ Desperately Seeking Sanity

I'm rusty!!!!! (And a little sleepy...:))

Welcome back!

My Mother always told me that I’d “grow” into gardening but I’m not sure that I believe her. I watch her and my grandmother, both part of the Master Gardeners, work flowers with finesse, knowing exactly what to do. They know when to plant what, what types of soil to use, what plants need direct sunlight and what plants require all shade. They also know about what I call the bi-polar plants, those that require partial shade.

Conversations about plants, gardens, dirt, and everything else that goes with growing stuff happen all the time. But I have no green thumb. I WANT to have a green thumb. I want to spend hours weeding and planting, pruning, fussing, taking care of the plants that I’ve come to love.

I WANT to have the nicely manicured lawn and the beautiful flower pots on my porch. I LONG to have the garden and the flowerbed full of mums in the fall and sunflowers in whatever season that you’re supposed to grow sunflowers in.

Yes, she says that I’ll grow into it, but I don’t think I will. I could be wrong, it’s been known to happen especially when my mother tells me something. There are the rare occasions that I get the urge to be outside planting and those are the days that I go to WalMart and grab some kit and come home and plant it.

My problem? I don’t want to wait for the sprouts. I want to walk out on my porch the next morning and see buds and then blooms. I don’t want to wait. At all.

Yes, I know that I can buy plants that are already blooming, but I have a slight problem with those, too. Did you know that you’re supposed to water vegetation so that it grows? I know it too, my problem is in the remembering. Somewhere between remembering to pack my child lunch money and what lesson I’m going to teach for the Youth at church, I forget to water them.

But I continue to watch my mother and grandmother in awe of what they know and what they do. I want that. It ranks right up there with wanting to be Suzy Homemaker, which I fall way short there, too.

So I just watch them, and I soak it all in. Because if I do finally grow into this? I want to have a little knowledge under my belt.


I see soft meadows of pink, purple, yellow, red and white. Flowing waves of soft colors sweep the landscape. I can’t wait to walk through them and touch their soft, silky petals. I can smell the gentle fragrance hanging on the wind. Tulips dance around me with vigor, singing their song of praise and joy to the Almighty.

God’s touch on this lonely planet seems completely obvious to me when I see a scene like this. How could this perfect gentle beauty ever be considered an accident or an evolutionary marvel? Nature, in it’s perfect untouched beauty is beyond what any of us could consider a fluke.

Tulips have always been my favorite flower ever since I was a little girl. I guess the idea of a perfect little flower in the shape of a satin cup just amazes me. Imagine the taste of sweet, buttery nectar that a lovely butterfly might enjoy today. Each petal has the most perfect oblong shape with a silky, velvety skin. So delicate and soft, I can’t help but pull the flower along my chin to enjoy the soft tickle it gives me.

Inside there are three tall white stamens standing at attention, waiting for their perfect mates. Each bumble bee and butterfly that visit the precious flower to drink it’s nectar brings with it life in the form of yellow pollen. I can’t help but imagine a little fairy floating from flower to flower sliding down the inside of a petal to rest at the bottom of the tiny cupped tulip.

Even the stems of these graceful little works of art are beautiful. Each one is thick and pale green with a smooth yet velvety texture. Sometimes, they seem almost transparent. Attached to each stem is a long, green petal that shoots upward seeking light from the seemingly endless sky.

Jessica (aka Rose)

I'm back too!
Glad to hear that you are ok!

The old tree stands in the corner of our new garden, surrounded by ivy and weeds. For a year we’d walked by it thinking about the promise that we’d made to the previous owners; take care of their tree. We were supposed to have it sprayed, fertilize it, do something to keep it healthy, but neither of us knows much about trees, and both of us are way too wrapped up in our own lives to think about an ancient tree in a yard we only ever walk through.
But today the sun light hit the tree just as I walked in and I detoured to take a closer look. Peaches adorned every square inch of tree branch. Huge golden peaches; just begging to be picked. I’m going to have to come back with a basket or something. It would be a shame to let these go to waste. I plucked a ripe looking orb to take it in to show Mark. He’d be so excited. Wasn’t this one of the reasons we chose this house?
Walking into the kitchen I spotted a twin to my peach sitting on the counter. Mark had made his own pilgrimage to the old fruit tree. I smiled and went to find him.
“Have you seen the peach tree?”
“I can’t believe how many peaches are on there! Who knew that old tree could bear so much fruit!”
“Can we make peach pie?” The childlike excitement made me laugh and I started to nod.
“Hey, do you hear that weird noise?”
“What noise?”
“That.” I said as I moved closer to the window. I could hear an otherworldly creak coming from outside. As I moved closer the sound grew until it sounded like a muffled scream. A CRACK of thunder propelled me outside.
“The tree!” I yelled back at Mark, who jumped out of his chair and followed me.
We stopped as one when we reached the broken, splitting trunk of our peach tree and watched it slowly fall to the ground, its rotted core no match for the bounty of ripe fruit. I reached out and picked a peach, more determined than ever not to let them go to waste.
“Yes. We can make peach pie, and peach cobbler, and peach preserves, and canned peaches, and peach crumble, and anything else peach based that you want.”

Gwendolen Gross

Thank you three for a hint of green (and fruit! Oh, I'm so hungry for peaches now!) right in the middle of winter.
Heather, I love (and can identify with!) that sense of ambivalence about continuing traditions, and the sense of change in your piece--would love to see what happens when the narrator takes some steps...
"perfect little flower in the shape of a satin cup just amazes me. Imagine the taste of sweet, buttery nectar that a lovely butterfly might enjoy today. Each petal has the most perfect oblong shape with a silky, velvety skin." wonderwoman! Such sensuous (almost innocently sexy) writing! So visual and lovely!
And Jessica, I am so hungry for peaches now...sigh. The loss of all that fruit is tangible--I feel like I've lost the tree, too. Beautiful stuff!
Welcome back to you all, and keep going!

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