Thursday, September 8, 2011

Down my garden path ......

Five years ago today, I brought this beautiful Golden Weeping Willow home from the Briar Patch.  As hard as it may be to imagine when it now tops well over twenty feet, that day it came here in the back of my little hatchback!
Why this tree?   In plant lore, trees are either feminine or masculine.   Everything in the willow family is feminine ... undoubtedly in no small part owing to their ability to bend without breaking:)   As a sidebar note to that, willows are good picks to celebrate the start of life ... being ever so much more enduring than other feminine trees such as birches.
Why a feminine tree?   The short version of this story is that this particular tree was planted on the day my granddaughter was born.  Five years ago today, my daughter had started labour and so it was time.
Five years ago today, I was a mother and an animal lover ... a gardener and a cook ... and all the other bits that round out the edges.   Five years ago tomorrow, I was all that and a grandmother!   Now ... no matter where she goes, Lydia always knows her tree is here with me everyday!
Why did I plant the Lydia Tree?   For the same reason so many special shrubs and trees were started in the yard.  Could there possibly be any better way to commemorate life's passages?  
Although there are traditional plants for remembrance, such as Rosemary, I generally plant something that reminds me of the person or pet that I have lost.
There is an Alexander MacKenzie rose out back in memory of McG ... it's prickley self will wind up being much taller than me in time making it ever so suitable for all that Scottie feist!    The Labrador lays under a clump of daylilies that have faithfully flowered for every full summer season since he passed.
Honeysuckle for the sweet little mini Schnauzer who came to us when her people replaced her with a human baby.    Mountain Ash (another feminine tree) in memory of my Mom's strength.    Heirloom roses for the Dad who took such pride in his own roses.  
I'll be the first to admit that gardening isn't everyone's cup of tea.  It would be cold comfort to plant memorial plants if one had neither the skills nor inclination to keep them alive, eh?
It is not the only way to remember ... simply the way that works best for me!

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