Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Up the Garden Path




           It's hard to live in the moment. But something happens in the last week of April and the first days of May that has me trying.
            The low phlox (top photo) blooming under the big maple tree makes a tiny stretch of tired sidewalk glow with color. It's the bright moment of the year for this little piece of the earth's surface.You have to enjoy while it lasts because, trust me, it doesn't last very long.




            It's tulip season (second photo). Tulips tend to deteriorate after a few years. Professional display gardens tend to pull up all the bulbs every other year and plant new ones. These yellow and red ones keep coming back. We forget about them from one year to the next, but they appear to keep track of time very well without us.   Some taller violet colored tulips fight their way up in a spot in front of the house crowded with shrubbery as well.
            Pale violets (third photo), spotted with purple dots. They will grow on your lawn, mixing with the grass and clover, if you don't use "weed killers." I think this batch moved with us from Plymouth.
            Up the garden path, front yard style (fourth photo). The stepping stones we put down the first year to mark the curving path from the so-called cottage garden in front of the house were overgrown and covered by dirt almost immediately. Some of the plants I tried to grow along them haven't survived there either. But the roses, lavendar, adromeda, butterfly bush, and maiden grass (too low to be seen yet but a fast grower when its new green spears come in) have all flourished.
            In the back garden (fifth photo), the fresh colors, and new leaves of plants emerging from the ground and beginning to take their proper shape make a jumbled but pleasing May Day early spring climax.It's the light that pulls everything together in this photo.
            Some taller plants in a view just a few feet to the left (sixth): the Chinese peony, the first leaves on the thin-limbed dogwood; the red Japanese maple against the fence.
            A closer view of this piece of the back garden (seventh photo) bring the vinca, day lilies and the dark green of the evergreens behind them into focus.
            A shadow-striped photo of  the right-hand side of the back garden (eighth photo), looking toward the oak tree. Spring vetch at the base of the tree is blooming purple. Also purple penstemon, the itea shrub, low artemisia, and too many other plants to remember all the names.
            Rediscovering all these plants in the certain slants of light of the just-now season is the peculiar pleasure of a time that can't last .You have to be there when it happens. I'm glad we had the chance to be there then. Because now it's now, and time is always fleeting.