How do we grow gardeners? We start them young. We intrigue them with our questions about what they’re seeing, what they’re hearing. We let their imaginations run rampant. We celebrate their dirty hands and knees and when they grow up they already love their favorite garden spots.
My grandson CJ taking a break from chasing dinosaurs in our woodland garden on April 26, 2006.
We pass on what our elders taught us that captured our fascination with the world around us. How did we come to appreciate the complexity of leaf edges and the critters crawling under our stumps and stones? We talked with them, we enjoyed the experience of learning and sharing. We made the garden the center of their invented stories, their imagined dinosaurs, the strolling around the paths that led to nowhere but really everywhere.
My Uncle Teddy passed down to me the mysterious and exciting world of nature and the gift he gave me keeps giving. As my grandson CJ completes his Eagle Scout project of creating a woodland path through a nature preserve dedicated to native plant species with the eradication invasive species, we see how we generationally share our knowledge and continue to contemplate our universe.
My grandson CJ Ahern sitting at one of his favorite spots in our woodland garden on April 29, 2018 just before he started his Eagle project to restore a neglected woodland area at an animal sanctuary in Seaford NY.
I know I’m suffering from a pretty awful case of cabin fever. So last Friday, January 22 my Hogging buddy, Elisabeth and I spent a wonderful day at the New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx, NY.
Snowdrops are put on this planet to bring a smile to your face in winter
Galanthus elwesii in bloom in the Jane Watson Irwin Perennial Garden, NYBG
Walking through the Jane Watson Irwin Perennial Gardens on the way to the Conservatory, what do we see but the heralding of spring. The Galanthus elwesii and Helleborus niger were in bloom. Right out there, smack in the cold misery of January.
If you need a boost to get you through the next few weeks, seeing these in bloom is just the ticket.
Hellebore niger were in bloom as were the less showy Hellebore foetidus
In my own garden I have many cultivars of Hellebore but no Christmas roses
Check your own gardens for what buds are beginning to swell and whether your daffodils are starting to push through the mulch. When I came home from the NYBG I did just that and found a whole host of growth going on right outside my windows.