The Blue Ghost In All Its Glory

Rhododendron augustinii ‘Marion McDonnell’ April 29 2017 — Scan — Alex Waterhouse-Hayward

My friend Alex Summers now dead so many years ago was my friend. He started the American Hosta Society. He had interesting things to say about gardens. Read here. But salient is this:

“It takes a year to plan and design a garden. You need a year to build it. You wait three years for it to mature. On the 6th year you enjoy it. In the seventh it declines. You start from scratch on the 8th.”

Our Athlone garden in Vancouver, BC, was one we started in 1986. It had many of those 8-years progressions but it finally died in 2015 when me moved in early 2016 to our present small garden in Kitsilano. Rosemary has yet to recover from the loss. I supress it while enjoying our little garden that is transforming itself into a jewel of a garden. Some of Summers’ dictums might not apply as we moved mature plants from Athlone to here. We had one big loss our Magnolia grandiflora.

April 29 2017 — Photographs Alex Waterhouse-Hayward

I finally cut the dead magnolia into pieces and took it out a week ago. We replaced it with a brand new one which is much smaller. We live in the hope that it will bloom some day.

One of the best of the plants that we brought from the old garden is Rhododendron augustinii ‘Marion McDonnell’. It did not look very good over the winter but it is now in bloom and it is glorious in our garden.

The rhodo simply enlarges on the idea that a garden is a work of changing continuity. This is our second spring in Kitsilano. A few of the roses already have buds. The hostas are emerging in all that pristine glory they show in early May.

Our garden is a promise. Rosemary’s cat Casi-Casi spends a lot of time in it (when it is not raining) as well as Rosemary. I hope she soon forgets Athlone and like Summers said, …on the 6thyear you enjoy it…”

Early 2016

Link to: The Blue Ghost In All ItsGlory

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