Friday, December 14, 2012


As I wait to celebrate the birth of one child...

Tonight I am praying for all children.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Find Myself Dreaming of Spring

Many moons ago I uploaded a book published in 1903, A Woman's Hardy Garden by Helena Rutherfurd Ely. I've been reading it off and on for over 2 years. I'm trying to fool myself into thinking that I could possibly grow a flower garden.  Now that we've had a yard for 15 months I find that I have quite the green thumb - my weeds were healthy and thrived all year.  I managed them so well that they survived even when my husband sprayed weed killer on them.  I have a gift.

So now I am perusing several gardening books.  I started to do some research on the author of Woman's Hardy Garden.  Found this bit of information -
In the early 1900s, Helena Rutherfurd Ely, a founding member of the Garden Club of America, wrote three books encouraging a generation of gardeners to abandon the Victorian practice of "bedding out" garish colored tender annuals in geometric beds, the gardening equivalent of a showy, status-seeking home. Instead, she urged her followers toward a more informal and sensual style.
What started as a matter of personal taste became a revolutionary movement, and made Ely and her garden early stars of American horticulture.
Her inspiration came from the relaxed plantings of farmhouse dooryards and rural fences lined with casually tended hardy herbaceous perennials. Her first book, "A Woman's Hardy Garden" (1903), sold 40,000 copies, an impressive number for a garden book even today. Her five-acre garden on the New Jersey-New York border became a mecca for her disciples, and she was inundated with fan mail. Letters were still arriving more than 20 years after her death in 1920.
Hmmmm, I live 9 miles from the NY/NJ border....hmmmm.  After a bit of internet snooping I found out that as of 2004 her gardens were still being maintained, and they are 7 miles from my house!!!  The owner who had maintained the gardens died in 2004 so I'll have to find out this spring if the new owners of the property are allowing folks to have a look! I've lived in NYC for over 20 years so I have NO CLUE when it comes to gardening.  Now that I'm living in a rural outpost of the city, I think this spring I'll stick a few plants in some dirt and see what happens.
(I found her book on U Penn's digital library, have a look).
This ends my ode to spring - now I gotta shake a leg and get ready for Christmas. HoHoHo.