Having survived the slings and arrows of an intense Easter season, replete with another First Communion (!!!), a birthday, and lots of school goings-on, I am now impatiently waiting with bated breath for predictable warm weather. Oh, for footwear that doesn’t require socks!! And as I tromp around my cold, wet, gray yard, pondering future landscaping possibilities and better acquainting myself with the particular plant species inhabiting this corner of the earth, my soul is craving real Spring. To reassure myself that it, in fact, will arrive in due time, I have been enjoying last year’s pictures of the garden splendor and hunting out some relevant quotes (the purple parts are my own take home messages from this exercise… applicable to so much more than gardening). Enjoy with me until reality is once again in bloom…
The first day of spring is one thing, and the first spring day is another. The difference between them is sometimes as great as a month.-Henry Van Dyke (1852-1933)
Be patient, O be patient! Put your ear against the earth; listen there how noiselessly and gently it upheaves its little way till it parts the scarcely broken ground, and the blade stands up in day.
-William Coles, The Art of Simpling, 1656
If thou of fortune be bereft,
And in they store there be but left
Two loaves, sell one and with the dole
Buy hyacinths to feed thy soul.
-James Terry White (1845-1920)
The pleasure of picking a few flowers and finding the right vase for them is incomparable.-May Sarton (1912-1995)
I'd rather have roses on my table than diamonds around my neck.-Emma Goldman (1869-1940)
Do not think it a waste of time to cultivate a few flowers or to let the children have a flower bed. It is judicious for parents to cultivate a love of flowers in their children from the earliest years, as flowers have a refining influence, and never lead astray, but always upward to what is purer and better. If one's time and strength are limited, a bed one yard square, with a geranium and a few nasturtiums, for instance, can give pleasure to the whole household; and these flowers will bloom all season, until the frost blights them. A few flowers in pots are better than none.-The Old Farmer's Almanac, 1893
Don't try to follow all the advice that is offered to you; make up your own mind what you want to do and go steadily ahead. If you fail you will know how, and why, which is in itself a distinct gain. Distrust garrulous advice; the gardener with real knowledge is not inclined to force advice upon others.-Ida Bennett, The Flower Garden, 1903
It is very difficult to write about flowers. I discovered this truth only when I started to do so... In a very short space I had to combine the descriptive with the practical - petals, in fact, with slugs; loveliness with manure; lavishness with instructions for pruning. Successful gardening is made up of all these things, and to be a successful gardener one must also be a realist.-Vita Sackville-West, Some Flowers, 1937
I recommend to any person, however humble his means, however narrow his land - if he must choose between beauty and profit, between flowers and shrubs on the one hand, and vegetables and fruit on the other, to have beauty. [...] Potatoes and apples you may buy about as cheap as you can grow them, and you will buy them if you do not grow them, to keep body and soul together. Beauty can only be bought at the most extravagant price, and if it is not cultivated at your home, will hardly be bought; there is no physical appetite to clamor for it, and common economy begins with dispensing with it.-R. Morris Copeland, A Handbook of Agriculture, Horticulture, and Landscape Gardening, 1859