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Thankful for the Garden

baptisia-australis

With Thanksgiving just a couple days away, I am counting my blessings. Family and friends top my list of things for which I am most thankful, but my garden follows close behind. I took a few moments to remember the past year in the garden and sum it up in a letter of thankfulness.

Dearest Garden,

I am so thankful for the joy you have given me over the past year.

female-cardinal-on-deck

In January and February, you welcomed birds of all sorts to share in your bounty of berries and seeds. The pond offered them water to quench their thirsts and bathe their feathers. Those feathered friends kept me entertained as I watched through frosty windows.

squirrel-looking-thru-sliding-glass-door

The branches of your trees and shrubs became obstacle courses and jungle gyms on which squirrels capered and cavorted. Their antics were the source of many winter giggles. They seemed to enjoy my antics, too.

winter-view-of-garden

While flipping through pages of seed and plant catalogs, your views offered hope and inspiration for the landscape of the future.

scilla-under-weeping-willow

In March and April, you exploded into color as you roused snowdrops, crocus, glory-of-the-snow, squill, grape hyacinths, tulips and daffodils from their winter slumber.

crabapple

Crabapples, magnolias, viburnums, lilacs and other spring-flowering trees and shrubs were loaded with exquisite blooms beseeching me to take a moment to appreciate their beauty or breathe in their enchanting fragrance.

helleborus-orientalis-flower-close-up

Thank you for the plethora of perennials you kept sheltered beneath your soil until the warmth of spring sunshine encouraged them to rise again. Their buds and blossoms were all cherished beginning with early risers like hellebores and columbines and concluding with fall-blooming perennials like sedum and toadlilies.

coreopsis

As the season progressed, you helped me de-stress after work while deadheading spent blooms on annuals and perennials. You realigned my priorities while pulling weeds. You listened without judgment as I worked through decisions and made plans for the future. You never laughed when I sang.

window-box

Thank you for indulging my weakness for new plants and allowing me to squeeze them in spaces too small according to experts. You shared my philosophy – the more, the merrier – or at least, you tolerated it. How many annuals did we cram into pots? You kept my secrets.

strawberries-ready-to-harvest

In the summer, you produced yummy fruits and vegetables. I enjoyed them straight from the garden – peas right out of the pod and strawberries, raspberries and blueberries plucked from plants and popped right into my mouth whenever I passed by.

hummingbird-04

Thanks for hosting hummingbirds, butterflies and bees and frogs, toads and dragonflies. They added life to the landscape as they flitted and fluttered, buzzed and whirred, and splashed about.

fall-color

In October, you set the foliage on fire. Hues of yellow, orange and red filled the landscape. The mums and fall-blooming annuals and perennials kept your performance on stage well into November. It wasn’t until the first freeze in mid-November, that you showed signs of needing rest.

Thank you for calming my anger, sharing my happiness, stretching my muscles, making memories with grandsons, your patience with my mistakes, and inspiring and motivating me. Good night, dear garden, rest well.

What does your garden do for you? Let’s share our experiences with others in the hopes that everyone will know the joy a garden can bring. Garden with me!

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