Our garden is a celebratory garden! It is also a random, rambling garden not unfamiliar with the odd weed. The lawn bordering the garden does not always form sharp, delineated edges which give way to gently sloping rich loam leading up to precisely staked flowers with appropriate distances between each plant. More often lawn edges sport wisps of grass missed this week by the lawnmower and so given a reprieve from the butcher’s blade until the next cutting. The flowers, although exuberant , appear to have been ‘broadcast’ – which is an old fashioned way of saying the planter walked along scattering seeds with a gentle arc of his or her hand completely unaware of the concept of prepared rows. The joy in our garden does not come from its All-American perfection but from its contents.
The tiny sky-blue for-get-me-nots are the first to greet the spring in their eagerness to get their message across. They bring with them a bittersweet remembrance since my mother suffered for 17 years from Alzheimer’s and although she forgot me, the adopted flower for the Alzheimer Society begs me not to forget her. Yes, Mother, you are remembered. Fast on the heels and mingling with the forget-me-nots are the yellow and burgundy iris which take me back to my childhood and my roots. Iris were introduced to the North American continent in the early 1900’s – just at the time my grandparents homesteaded their farm in southwest Manitoba – which would become the home of my childhood. In her first garden my grandmother planted the Princess Victoria Louise iris. When we left the farm a root from the Princess Victoria Louise came with us – to Winnipeg and eventually migrated west with us to Edmonton. Each spring they flag (their early common name) the end of winter.
While on your way through my garden to the roses, lilies nod their welcome as they have since our 40th anniversary – a gift from a friend. You pass the roses commemorating the birth of our last two grandchildren, Eliza and Tess to reach our latest addition – the Morden Sunrise Rose – celebrating love. Welcome to our garden!