Monday, February 21, 2011

Gardeners of "The Court" -- The Cycle of Life in the Garden

Garden as therapy
Membership in the unofficial garden club on the "Court" or cul de sac where we live is as precious as any professional affiliation.  A lawyer by trade, I am paid to "counsel," yet I often quietly marvel at the willingness of folks who pay me to listen, when what they really need is advice.  Not so with gardeners. 

Those bemused neighbors who track my burgeoning interest in plant cultivation, in addition to a helpful tip or two, have introduced me to the unique breed known as "gardeners."  Gardeners see beauty growing in places where others never bother to look--the crack of a sidewalk, beneath a crumbling overpass, or along a storm drain.  They understand the cycle of life. 

On my street, and I suspect most others, gardens serve as therapeutic incentives to keep going, instilling some normalcy when times get tough.  These cultivated patches of soil, window boxes, even containers on high-rise balconies reflect joys and sorrows, the good days, and those which are horribly bad. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Planting Windowboxes -- No pane, no gain!

It began with one.  Soon they grew--and multiplied. A bit of a theme for gardeners.  Windowboxes.  Small, contained minigardens, at your windowsill.  The eye is drawn outwards from in, and homewards for the inbound. 

Ours don't retire in the winter.  Before the soil freezes, I fill them with an eclectic (and cheap) collection of twigs, branches, figures and a few dozen varied sprigs from the local dollar shop.  If you haven't looked lately, these are not your momma's artificial flowers. Once frosted with snow, they create a beautiful celebration of winter.  The full boxes add depth and character and send a message to those who approach that the place is loved and cared for.