Where you tend a rose, my lad, A thistle cannot grow.
Yesterday was a bad day, but I’m determined to make all of the other days in the year, at least partially, good. All of the posts so far on this blog (all 4 of them lol) have mentioned something about doing what makes me happy. And this is something that makes me happy 🙂
Over the past year, I’ve gotten really into gardening. I had spurts of determination while growing up, from growing California Poppies, and tomatoes to planting flowers around my deck but none that resulted in a full grown splendor. I was pretty set on success this time around though. It started with going to the local garden center with my mom around this time last year. She bought a hydrangea, planted it next to our house, and it totally hit me that it was pretty and that I liked it and I was missing that from my life.
I have a lot of memories and moments dispersed throughout my life what are all very flower-centric; I remember my dad and I walking home and him asking me why Pink Ladies were so unique (they have no leaves when they flower), and my mom seeing a huge bush of blue hydrangeas and just standing and staring at them. Whenever we went on trips, for whatever reason we took a lot of pictures of flowers. We always had flowers around the house. They’re a really familiar site; they’re visually one of my most comforting things.
As a three year old, I remember watching The Secret Garden and feeling like that’s what I wanted more than anything (that dream de-toured a bit when I turned 6, saw Independence Day, and wanted to be Jeff Goldblum, which is a long story). Walking into a space, completely my own, and feeling at home with all those flowers. I told you, was a dreamy child.
At 22, I realized it was no better time than any to make that a thing. To make my own little serene space. So I did.
It started off with buying one very small Iceberg Rose. I bought it around September, so it was at the very end of it’s blooming season. I spent hours online researching roses, figuring out how to keep it healthy, pruning, diseases, replanting and just overall care. I was totally obsessed. Since we were going into winter, there wasn’t much else available to buy at the time so me and my little Iceberg Rose marched on through winter.
The little rose started to get ill and I was so attached to it that it really was hard to watch it slowly decline in health. But I again poured over articles and books and resources online to try and kickstart its health again. It’s on it’s way back but it’s still struggling. I’m working on it 🙂
As I was nursing the little rose back to health, I accumulated nine other roses this spring. I’ll eventually show them to you in another post. My mom and I also gained two new blue hydrangeas (we already had four in various colors and species), a small Calamandarin tree, a fuchsia plant, various small cactuses and succulents, I grew about 10 tomato plants from seed, 10 basil plants from seed, a small sweet pea vine, two potato vines, a jasmine vine, I grew four forget me nots, we planted about 30 tulip, crocus and freesia bulbs around the house, and just now, in the thick of spring almost summer, there is life thriving around our house.
There were a lot of challenges through this process, which again, I will go into detail in another post, but cultivating all these plants has been rewarding and just took off such a load of stress off of both my mom and I. I think during my dad’s illness we focused in so tightly that when he finally passed away, a lot was left unattended. There was a hollow feeling in the house. It’s not as obvious to me anymore though. The light all of our “garden” brings physically and emotionally made a world of difference.
I’m going to start doing almost weekly (every 10 days or so) “garden party” posts. It’ll be a way to track our success as well as share bits with you guys.
As one of my most favorite parts of our house and honestly most personal parts, it’s again not something that I’m used to sharing but I think I’m ready. That will also be a common theme through at least the beginning of this blog.
So here’s a little step into my happy place.
first tomato of the season 🙂