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The Weekly Bloom: Week of May 15

4 Comments

A couple days ago, a visitor asked me, “So, when will the flowers be out?” I gave her my friendliest look of polite confusion; to my eyes there are flowers all over the place! She continued, “The roses are still dead.” I explained that peak rose season is June, and she smiled. Her view that there aren’t flowers to see was confirmed, because, for her, flowers mean roses.

It started me thinking about how we see things, and how we learn to see more and more. Next time you are in the Gardens, try to see something you haven’t seen, or acknowledged, before. It will open your eyes.

• Colors: Everywhere I look, I’ve been seeing fabulous color combinations, some produced by nature and others facilitated by our horticulture staff. After a grey and brown winter, the colors of the tulips and other standouts will knock your socks off.

• Dryland Mesa: The ultra-xeric plants of Dryland Mesa are soaking up the recent rain, and repaying the bounty with their blooms. At the south end of this garden, you can see Claret Cup cactus (Echinocereus), tiny purple and white checked Nemophila maculata, and even a few early, radiant blue Phacelia flowers.

Phacelia

• “What a wonderful thing!”: Today, strolling through June's PlantAsia, I came upon a few seven-year-olds with their school chaperone. One boy was looking around him, transfixed by the stream and the patterned rock walkway. I wrote down his words; they showed such delight. As I passed, he looked right at me, his face radiant, and said, “This is amazing! What a wonderful thing!” Makes me want to try his eyes on for awhile.

Favorite lunch spot this week: Sit in the middle of the Lilac Garden, and inhale.

Gardens to spend time in: Wander the wooden walkway that connects the Gates Montane Garden with the Laura Smith Porter Plains Garden; explore the tiny plants blooming in the Rock Alpine Garden; enjoy the patterns and colors of new vegetables in Le Potager.

Comments

Ellen Hertzman
As with anything, I believe we all start from where we are, and, with encouragement, learn to take our next step. In my experience, this is true in the case of appreciation of plants or art or music, protecting the environment, really everything that requires a deeper and growing understanding. We just need to have patience, with ourselves and others, and look for the teachable moment...
Greg Holmes
A garden should be a symphony of sensations as this article reveals.
Ruth Pendergrast
I'm dismayed sometimes by the people who want nature to perform according to that person's convenience. I work in a garden center at a big box retail establishment. In the middle of this past week, customers complained that the plants were covered! "Well," we say politely, "if we didn't cover them they would freeze."
Doris Boardman
Wonderful post, Ellen. I am going out into the Gardens right now to find something I haven't seen before.

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