How Does Your Garden Grow Dearest?

One of many named irises in the garden

To my darling Frenchman, Olivier,

If only you were still here dear to see how the garden is continuing to bloom and bring me pleasure. Remember the discussions we had about how we would choose irises and roses to colour the exotic plantings which the landscape designer chose for foliage?

Some of the roses have struggled to survive in our hot summer and as I have already written they were all chosen by name to reflect our life together. Therefore, I watched like a worried parent as “Dearest’’ languished throughout summer, a stunted specimen clinging to life with no growth.spurts.

Its very name meant it could not die. Slowly the roots of  “Dearest’’ seemed to take hold in the hard earth and the odd new leaf appeared, but it remained dwarfed against the spectacular growth of “Amazing Grace’’ and “”French Lace’’. These two bushes have provided a summertime of beautiful flowers for my floral arrangements.

Imagine my joy this morning when I noticed that “Dearest’’ had flowered – a delicate single pink rose which may not be perfectly formed. My heart jumped for joy and I cut it for the house.  One last white bloom from Amazing Grace keeps it company in a delicate vase.

The lavender border plants have been clipped into little balls and the lush green semi-circular hedge has had its honeysuckle flowers cut back. Daffodil, hyacinth and tulip bulbs have been scattered around the garden. All of this activity has had me feeling like mother earth herself. I sense that I am a gardener and I love tending your memorial garden.

There is much left to do before winter takes hold. The native grasses, which have flowered in fluffy purple fronds need to be cut back and the sour sobs, that scourge weed of the Hills are springing up like mushrooms through the mulch and must be poisoned.

Daughter-in-law Vanessa’s father , John, has had a circular support made for the wisteria which is now wound around the pole and nudging towards the ring. By Spring it should have hitched itself onto the ring to prepare for a splendid flowering in September.

Dwarf Nandinas form a spectacular red border in autumn, the named irises given by Gwen Alexandrou still flower and the salvias are still spread their floral lavender skirts.

You will be pleased to know that I have not moved the strelitzia from the pond’s edge as I threatened to do and I have added two more to the garden for dramatic effect.  The hillside garden is dotted now with carpet roses, cannas, seaside daisies, geraniums and the odd agapanthus. I am happy to report that the three red geraniums that you potted as your last gardening act, are surviving, but I cannot say thriving. It’s tough terrain up there on the hill. That said, I am happy to tell you that of all those 11 bougainvilleas that “died’;’ three resurrected themselves. The pretty pink and white species that we loved so much at Hindmarsh Island is beginning to fall over the rear wall.  I think of you every time I look at it.




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1 Comment to “How Does Your Garden Grow Dearest?”

  1. By Janet, 18/04/2013 @ 7:06 am

    The personal is heartening………x

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