Catalogs Galore!!

So, I’m sitting here with a huge stack of gardening catalogues and my mind starts to wander.
My father, who gardened for the majority of his life, was also an architect. Needless to say, his gardening plans resembled the floor plans a sub-contractor might follow in building a new structure. There was something very comforting about working with Dad on the whole layout. We both knew that if we stuck with “the plan”, that garden would be symmetric, and the flow would be just perfect. My mother, an art teacher and artist, would assist with the “Palette” of colors. She loved yellows and greens and bright purples – all the colors that could be easily found in nature. Her eye for color and his eye for design melded into the most beautiful gardens and I learned much from their guidance.
One of their best kept secrets was that they started small. A few plantings here, some hostas in an especially shaded or partially shaded area there sparked off by splashes of color to bring out the most beautiful hues at different times of the day. As each spring came, a few more plants were added to these humble beginnings.
My folks also loved to cook, so Dad went to great pains to design and build an herb garden just off the kitchen deck. That garden was surrounded by stepping stones so that no matter what the weather conditions, he could step back to any area and choose thyme, Italian parsley, basil, mint, rosemary or sweet marjoram to include in the evening’s dinner recipes.
As I turn back to my array of catalogues, my mission is clear – carry on the traditions that my parents so tenderly nurtured – start small and plan for the future.


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