Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Saying Goodbye to a Garden


It's been a week of lasts. Last visit to the Carrboro Farmer's Market on a Saturday morning. Last watering of plants in the garden. Last sitting on a bench in the backyard watching birds. Last walks on familiar routes, where I saw deer and red-shouldered hawks. One block from my house, I heard a rustling in the trees along the road. I stopped, waited and a doe emerged, then two tiny fawns, covered in white spots. The doe stood still, looking right at me. I looked back. One fawn and then the other ran to their mother and began nursing.

Later, behind the deer fence, I dug up favorite plants. I felt a slight sense of guilt, even though these are my plants. But the letter of the contract on the house sale says that all plants in the ground are considered part of the property. Shh... Who's to know three or four dozen plants are moving with me? In fact, they're already resting under a pine tree at the new house, where the seller kindly offered to water them.



I took my favorites. Young shrubs that have not yet bloomed - two native azaleas, one pinxterbloom and one 'Clyo Red.' A Clethra alnifolia 'Hummingbird,' an Ilex sentinel holly, my only surviving blueberry bush. Two Christmas ferns, a few heucheras of purple and green variegated and limegreen foliage, hellebores, a spreading tiarella, three canna lilies ('Bengal Tiger') and a maidenhair fern. Japanese roof lilies, green 'n gold, and monarda, all of which will spread to become sizable patches. There must have been more - I dug for hours and filled two cars with plants, but I am not thinking clearly after days of packing.

More than 30 plants fit in a compact Prius.


I wish I could move the bluebirds with me. I believe the eggs hatched the other day. The male bluebird has been hovering around the box, proudly perching on the box top with fat green caterpillars and later a yellow moth. The bluebird then would fly to a favorite dead branch, eat his meal and return to the box, sometimes disappearing inside. This morning the male kept anxiously peering at the hole after the female went inside with an insect.



Then he disappeared inside the box. I'll miss the bluebirds. I hope bluebirds come live at our house in Raleigh. 







6 comments :

Indie said...

I'm sure it must be such a bittersweet feeling leaving your old garden but moving on to a new one. May your new garden be even more beautiful and filled with birds and other welcome wildlife!

Donna@Gardens Eye View said...

Oh Sheila while it is sad to be going, it seems everyone came by to wish you well...they will follow you somehow...they will spread the word as you set up your loving garden that yours in the perfect place to call home...I wish you well and am sending lots of good vibes as you take your first steps on this new path :)

Sheila Read said...

Indie and Donna, thanks for the good wishes. We move into the new house today. Donna, I like the notion that the wildlife was wishing me well. I do believe we somehow communicate, and that's why people who love wildlife see so many beautiful moments - they know not to be afraid of us....

Stacy said...

Sheila, I hope the beautiful, well-loved "lasts" ease gently into a series of beautiful "firsts" that will be just as well-loved in time. Hope you have some time to breathe today, too, to enjoy the newness of your new home.

PlantPostings said...

Awww, I almost cried when I read this post. It does indeed seem like your garden friends were saying goodbye to you. I'm sure it's tough, but you'll still have the lovely memories of this place as you move on to more adventures in a new garden. You really captured the mood of the "gardener on the move" in this post. Good luck with the transition!rkeecs

PlantPostings said...

Sorry about the extra letters on my last comment--they were part of the captcha code that accidentally attached themselves to my comment. ;-)