Thursday, July 30, 2009


My boss told his young-but-wise grandson that I have a green thumb. AJ answered, "she does not!" So, who's right?

My gardening and landscaping endeavors have been, for the most part, quite successful. I bask in the daily oohs and aahs of the campers walking the various garden paths; I humbly say "thank you" a zillion times a week when I'm told how wonderful the lavish gardens are. But for all that, I can't say I have a green thumb, just a great passion. I'm no professional, just a hobby gardener who learns as she goes and who relies on internet sources for her continuing education, and who, with the help of all the garden gods, continues to create happy accidents in these gardens.

To help me believe that I do indeed have a green thumb, I'm seriously considering painting my thumb green (or having it tattooed). Sometimes a person just believes better with visual aids!

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Here I am, all settled into my routine of summer garden job in the north and winter vacation in the south, always the same places, and very content with this arrangement. Along comes a daughter telling me she's quitting her corporate job, buying a motorhome, and she and I will travel the southwest U.S. for six months.

OMG, panic in the streets of my mind! What, get me out of my comfy little rut, and make me think again? How Dare You. Now I have to learn how to winterize my trailer, something I've never done before. Now I have to find a keeper for my truck for the winter. Now I have to make lists of what to bring on this new adventure.

Remembering that the difference between a rut and a grave is that one can still climb out of a rut, I'm loving every minute of this! New Adventure is the name of the game, and this is my opportunity to join forces with this daughter in new ways, as we not only explore the great outdoors of the southwest, but also the great "indoors" of our inner truths. We're not a religious lot, but we are spiritual seekers.

Life's little side trips add such richness to the equation; the unexpected can be so delightful; each little trip gives us the opportunity to say YES! to adventure. Look out World, here we come (beginning mid-September)!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


No rain in sight . . . gardens are thirsty! I fondly remember the early spring days when we had frequent gentle ground-soaking rains, and I never had to water. I had time to finish up garden prep, and do all the needed planting. Now, as I drag my watering hose from spigot to spigot, I think an irrigation system would be wonderful.

Oh, wait --- is that what I really want? With my hose, I get to seriously visit each section of the garden as I water. I get to see who needs deadheading, and who has weeds that are pretending to be flowers (and I pull them as I see them). I get to notice all the new little buds that promise continued blooming. I get to be surprised at the first hibiscus bloom, and can imagine what our "hibiscus hill" will look like when all seven plants are in bloom and look forward to getting pictures of that! Our first giant sunflower just opened fully, what a delight, and there are buds there too. I get to notice what garden insects are active, and I get to capture that darn japanese beetle who thought he was hiding in the rose.

When I water I see so much detail that I might miss if all I do is walk throu
gh the garden. This way, I'm standing in front of one section at a time. It's the difference between driving through a neighborhood and walking through a neighborhood. When you walk, you have the time to wave at people, and stop for a friendly chat.

OK so I don't want an irrigation system after all.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


Our newest garden area: a former grassy field has been transformed by a gazebo surrounded by small gardens and pathways. Less grass to cut and surely easy on the eyes!

This first picture taken in April is of the "naked" garden areas, ready for planting. . .

This was my first-ever experience at doing it all, from laying the bricks and gravel paths, to planning then digging the gardens, hauling lots of compost to amend the soil, to setting the borders, to doing the actual planting. There's color for every part of the growing season! The rest of the pictures were taken a few days ago; all planting is done for this year and there's room for more next year.

Of course we're not finished: there are more areas to be transformed. Saving that for another time; Rome wasn't built in a day, right?

Campers want to know what the plants are, so I've placed labels for the more unusual things we have growing. This sparks so many nice conversations with our visitors!

They're surprised to see we have herbs scattered among the flowers. . .

And these final few pictures are of some very happy faces!