I grew up in a home surrounded by lush growth of flowers and trees. No one gardened the property as it was part of the “natural landscaping” look popular at the time. That meant there were numerous native plants, including trillium and johnny-jump-ups. There were also remnants of the time when the home, built in 1909, had employed a gardener. Hence roses, rhododendrons, daffodils, dogwood, and snowdrop bushes bloomed every spring. Countless trees populated the two acres, so many that when a storm in 1960 took our 13 trees, there were still plenty left.
In other words, I took plants for granted and never took up gardening as a hobby. Fortunately, I married a man who has a real talent in the yard and who recognized a neglected yard when he saw one. After we married in 1988, he began to FEED the plants which then actually thrived. When we moved into our present home in 2001, he continued his practice of feeding, watering, pruning, dividing and transplanting the landscaping already present. And in the intervening 19 years, he has introduced thousands of bulbs, perennials and shrubs to our city lot.
He especially loves spring bulbs, and he fights with the squirrels who want to dig them up for meals every fall after they go in the ground. He also has added some perennials to a shady spot in the yard. Above are three plantings that recently bloomed, two from bulbs, one from a plant.
Often I carelessly overlook all his work, taking it for granted in the same way I took my childhood surroundings for granted. This spring I am housebound and rejoicing at each new bloom, grateful beyond measure for having married a man with a genuine green thumb.