Dec 9, 2009

Cheers, toda oba, & dank u voor alles...

England was the first leg of my journey, and I experienced so many great gardens, gardeners, and landscapes there.I learned so much from Great Dixter. The gardeners there have such a passion for what they do, and it shows. The plant combination's are the most colorful and vibrant I have seen , and the skills and techniques that I learned there have been used over and over again since my time there and has helped make me a more confident gardener. The relationship that exists between home and garden really made itself understood during my time there.
Thank you Christopher Lloyd, though I have never met you, for providing such an opportunity for students, and for cultivating such passionate teachers such as Fergus and everyone else that I met while there. Cheers.

Next leg of my journey was Israel, which was one of the most exhilarating travel experiences I have ever had. Thank you to the British Friends of the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens, for making such an incredible scholarship available to students.
The lessons that I learned there are invaluable, not only to horticulture, but to life as well. I enjoyed the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens, the Dead Sea, the culture and food of Israel, and most of all, it's flowers and the friends I made while living there. The Mediterranean flora has been a very exciting thing for me to discover and learn about. Toda oba!

And then there was the Netherlands, in which my experience couldn't have been cast in a better light....
The experience I had at De Wiersse was the perfect ending to my adventure. As a kitchen gardener, it is satisfying to witness people enjoying what you have grown and seeing the pleasure it brings them. Food will neve be looked at again the same way for me. Being at DeWiersse allowed me the time and space to reflect on the many things I had encountered during the past year, and also to ponder the future. And the people I have met there couldn't have had a more positive impact on how I see things in life. Dank u voor alles.

My time away has been an incredible experience, a period of my life that I will go back to many, many times in my mind. It is bittersweet that it has come to an end, but that doesn't mean the adventure ends now that I have returned home. Now that I must utilize all that learned knowledge and push myself with all that I had encountered that was inspiring, the adventure has just begun.
Thank you for joining me on this ride......
Live well.

Nov 15, 2009

The Days of De Wiersse.....

At first arrival, I knew it would be different...

With its orchestra of bulbs,
it's emergence of lush green foliage,
or a field of yellow blooms, together they all helped herald the arrival of spring.
De Wiersse lead me down it's path,
shrouded my mornings with enchantment,
and bathed me in its warm light,
letting me end each day with a plethora of satisfaction.
I enjoyed the long path laden with Magnolia blooms,
or greeting it's geometric forms,
and hearing the buzzing of life in the meadow during summer.
Each moment carefully orchestrated and stored in my mind.
Boat rides in the outer moat , walks with Petal (yes, and you too Flopsy..),
and the nodding of the the Fritillaries in the wind, waiting for just the right moment to collect and distribute their seeds,
my mind and body floated languidly through each day,
lost in a haze
of fleeting moments.
Each day taking me further into my adventure.
To view the Rhododendrons from the boat seemed as if they floated above the water.
Each vista was special in its own way,
sometimes linking the interior of the garden with the surrounding landscape, never seeming forced.
The Wild Garden was a barrage of color with help from Foxgloves,
Azaleas and Bluebells, causing much excitement to my eyes.
And then there was the kitchen garden,
another slice of my paradise,
sometimes dream-like,
sometimes a flurry of organized chaos,it was a place to learn combinations,
to experiment,
and to watch life unfurl.
Oh, Sweet Williams,
heavy harvests,and the fruits of my labor,
time was lost in the richness of it all.
The kitchen garden enveloped me with its lessons,
and I was tangled in it's fine silky web
and thus, it brought me much, much happiness and delight.
Each day lined up new experiences,
new places to admire,
and secrets and surprises.
Two seasons have been found, and hopefully more will be unearthed,
and revealed in time.
The Sunken Garden, that lifts a smile to my face,
and provided many moments of solace
you made me giddy with delight.
It was a sight to watch your mood change,
from loud and vibrant,
to mysterious, I enjoyed it all the same,
never fully knowing where it would take me.
You shared your home with me,
and your food,
and your many, many flowers,
which inspired me tremendously,
and over,
and over again.
It woke my spirits,
and pushed me further than I imagined it would.
My eyes, my enlightened heart,
charming flowers and smiles,I walk down my memory.
Thank you so much DeWiersse.xoxo