Have the Garden Catalogs Arrived?

Back when I had sufficient energy, I loved creating my flower gardens. When the flower catalogs arrived I would pour over them, looking for flowers that I thought would thrive in my garden’s unique conditions. I would try to remember what was planted where and what type of color I needed for early, middle and late summer. It was my elexer for the mid-winter blues.

Strawflower buds?

Strawflower buds?

Sometimes I miss this creative aspect of gardening, especially when I see something isn’t working and want to move established, hard-to-get-out -of-the-ground plants. I also recognize my loss when I bring home plants from the garden center and they have to sit for a couple of days before I have the energy to plant them. My focus has changed from creating gardens to enjoying gardens and this doesn’t feel like much of a loss – when I think about it.

A winter-blooming blanket flower in Florida.

A winter-blooming blanket flower in Florida.

But I do remember the sweet joy of working the clay soil until it is light and fertile. I remember the joy of grabbing a shovel and digging up that day lily that would look better three feet over, next to the clematis.

I don’t want you to feel bad for me, all you gardeners, because I have a lifetime of garden memories to bring a smile to my face and I don’t have the sweat and achy muscles. You continue to grow the gardens, and I’ll be content to photograph the beauty you create.

In the meantime, I have told the teen across the street that I’ll need to hire his brawn in the spring to get some compost worked into the clay in a few spots. Life is good.



  1. So nice that you don’t miss it too dearly, and that you have helping hands available for when you do want to move things around. I far prefer the outcome to the effort, though my mom fully understands the need to get dirt under her fingernails 😉


  2. Dear Pat
    I understand your distance to gardening, though the reasons are different. In my case, I have no time for gardening (and have got no garden), but I love visiting gardens. Here in England where I live, houses normally have got a little garden in front of the house. I love it to stroll around and to take pictures of these garden plants and flowers. People even invite me to come into their garden so that I can take better pictures 🙂 I’m so lucky, I’m surrounded by gardens and don’t need anything to do for them.
    Your entry before about the shapes and so on, marvellous. Inspired me again. I can’t wait for the Spring. It’s not that cold here in the South-East of England as in MI, but this winter feels longer than the winters before.
    All the best !


    • Nice to hear from you, Ben. British gardens are fun to look at. I bet you will be having shoots coming up pretty soon. I am very fortunate to now be able to spend my winters in Southern Florida where there is lots of green and flowers growing all winter.


  3. I hope to make time for gardening. I find it quite therapeutic. We’ll see how it goes. Lately – life with the fam & kids has been so busy. I’m so in need of spring!


    • I remember eagerly waiting for kids to be out of school – then equally eager for them to be back in school. It is such a busy (and stressful) time of life. Just thinking of you makes me need to take a deep breath. 🙂

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