One gardener's observations, discoveries and random thoughts whilst simultaneously worshipping and dallying in a Cape Cod garden. "A garden," said Ralph Waldo Emerson, "is like those pernicious machineries which catch a man's coatskirt or his hand, and draw in his arm, his leg and his whole body to irresistable destruction."

Oriole Evening

I was drawn out onto the deck after dinner the other night by the song of our recently-returned oriole.    He sings every evening at dusk, it seems, but I’m not sure if he’s forecasting weather, posting a personal ad or just composing a tune about what a beautiful day it’s been.   It doesn’t really matter – I’m happy to listen, and the orangey-gold light of the setting sun suits him, too.

But then, while I was out there, I heard another bird, somewhere in the southern neighbors’ yard, that sounded like a parrot, actually.  I even heard something that sounded like “pretty bird” followed by some whistles and pops.   After the cycle of sounds repeated a couple of times, it began to sound more like an impression of a parrot, so I wonder if it was a mockingbird.  I never did make a sighting, so its impossible to be sure.   Just one of those random encounters with nature.

Anyway, it got me back outside, trying to spot the mystery bird.   There’s plenty of other stuff to distract me once I’m out there.   As always, the heliotrope has been quietly growing, stealthy green in the far end of the bed, leafy stalks suddenly five feet tall, flower bud clusters shooting toward the sky.  The next photos will be f’umundah.

The iris show here is still only just getting going, but the operative word is show.   We had lots of rain last week, and now things are drying out, but the days still aren’t too warm.   All this means nothing to mess up lovely blooms.

The buttercups are having their golden moment this week, scattered throughout the lawn (where I’ve carefully mowed around them).   There’s also a small patch of bright orange wildflowers.  I can’t remember their name, but they’re fun, too.

“Art is the unceasing effort

to compete with the beauty of flowers –

and never succeeding.” 

Gian Carlo Menotti


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