Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Thank You For My Garden

I woke up early this morning, in time to catch the first light coming through the fog. Every morning that I do this it reminds me of just how lucky I am to live here in such a beautiful place.

As the good-bye colors come out all over the countryside, I really want to offer my heartfelt gratitude to all the plants that have continued to grow and thrive in my garden. I started planting trees and perennials five years ago, and every year since then they have been growing, sometimes a little, sometimes a lot. Every month there's a new surprise to see when I walk outside, new growth or new flowers. This fall they're really starting to show their colors.

Two years ago, this Acer circinatum was a pair of four-foot sticks. Now it's starting to look like a real tree. I love the rounded palmate leaves, and the fact that it's a perfectly adapted and adaptable native of Oregon. Shade, sun, heat, cold--it doesn't care. It's just happy to be here.

This Cornus kousa Satomi was the very first tree I planted here, a bare root twig. Now it's 7 feet tall and about to turn the brilliant red-orange it turns every fall. Oh boy!

This Acer palmatum Sango Kaku, coral-bark maple, in the foreground is a young tree I just planted a year ago, and it started turning color almost a month ago. In early morning when the sunlight hits it, this baby lights up like a Las Vegas marquee. I'm already imagining what it's going to look like two years from now when it's a foot bigger in each direction (drool). Behind it is one of the Viburnum plicatums, the snowball viburnum, who is still getting established and couldn't manage to crank out any snowballs this year, but is making up for it with a really lovely fall show.

The aforementioned snowball viburnum. Ahhhhhh.

My extra-super-special scoop of the year, a very hard-to-find Disanthus cercidifolius, in the middle of transforming from green to crimson. It's also covered with tiny flowerbuds the size of ladybugs, that I think will open this winter.

My Sedum 'Brilliant' is still living up to its name this fall, even though the flowers have already dried.

And last on the list but right at the top of my heart, all my beautiful hydrangeas that bloomed so richly this year are in their gentle fall colors. This Sister Theresa has big, pure white heads of flowers, and now they're lovely pink and green. Other ones are blue/green, blue/violet, and blue/pink, I could cut some off for inside the house, but they're still so pretty outside I haven't wanted to.

So thank you, dear plants, for making my garden so beautiful, for being a continuous source of joy and inspiration to me, for making me feel like an artist every time I walk outside. May your roots grow deep and your trunks strong, and may your beauty bless the earth till the end of time.


  1. These are lovely images. You must live in a wonderful place!

  2. Thank you, Helen, and thank you for visiting! I enjoyed seeing your photos of Portland on your blog. You have a great eye for color. Cheers!