Rays of Hope 2017

In a frenzy of design and installation, 27 trees, 179 shrubs, 467 perennials, 700 annuals and 980 bulbs were planted for a total of 2,353 specimens this year.  Normally not one to boast but that’s a whole lot of digging. Entering the 16th year of this profession proved a bit challenging with my resume’ reading as blisters sculpted in sinewy palms. For the love of the art, I wouldn’t have it any other way! A mild spring  made opening season a pleasure with light weeding, mulching and installing bulbs for potted displays. At home, cherries were prolific at the end of June with a bumper crop to harvest and hours of patient pit removing that ensued. The pie was worth the wait.

Another generation of dragonfly re-visited sculpture made for a garden I tended at the same time and date as previous year. There is inexplicable magic in it’s timing on 7/11 at 1:11 pm; as if it’s unspoken presence represented an ancient ‘Anum Cara’ as the Irish say. Later this season, there was an ever present calling from a great horned owl’s hoot. It foreshadowed the changes to come in the weather. Usually sitting high and dry by mid-July, it was quite the opposite with above average levels of rain and over-saturated soil.  All that was planted earlier was not done in vain; most of the trees installed took root and flourished, withstood the following two-month drought and a few waned before their time.

So the good bones of garden design stand the test of time clad in carefully placed rock, forgiving and unhewn by human hand. Their soul essence alive with time immortal; stoic and steadfast as as an old friend, treelike in their entrenched presence. Another year awaits ahead of tree planting and garden tending.  Elder trees in their holy splendor speaking: it’s winter here, rest, renew and time to sharpen the shovel. There is much to look forward to in 2018.