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."

Archive for the ‘Rock Harbor’ Category

Flowers of Fire


Chasing the Sun

It’s a rainy day here today, so I’m glad to have saved a bunch of sunshine from Sunday to share today.

Sunday was, as its name implies, a warm and sunny day.  As Sundays sometimes are, it was a day long enough for relaxing, puttering and just a smidge of really hard work.   Maybe because the week before had been so cold and dim and rainy, when Sunday began to wind down, I still wanted a little more sunshine.

So as the evening rolled around, I wasn’t quite ready to collapse in a heap before the television and I walked through the neighborhood and down to Rock Harbor to enjoy the day’s end.

There was roses and other things blooming all along my way, and I’ve already shown you some of that last time around.   I’m sure if you’d been along, we’d have found something to talk about for nearly every step of the walk and possibly all this would’ve been merely backdrop for our experience, some of it even unnoticed.

On my own, however, I was lost in my own thoughts and free to stop and admire things here and there.

Walking to see the sunset and driving to the beach to do the same are completely different experiences, of course.  You can see (above, left) the small crowd gathered at the boat launch on the Orleans side of the harbor.

If I’d driven down to the shore for the occasion (and the sun setting almost always IS an occasion – sometimes here at the harbor, they even have a steel drum band!), I might’ve stopped somewhere for an ice cream on the way, and I’d probably stay until the last glimmers of light faded from the cloud-streaked sky.

But my walks are exercise as much as anything, and since I also like to have arrived back home before full dark, the sunset for me is a walk-by experience and while everyone else lingers still at the shore, I’m already working my way back to the house.   (On this night, I wanted to be home in time to see most of the Tony Awards, after all.)

But every now and then, I looked back over my shoulder.

Around The Corner

First things first:  THIS might be my new favorite song.   I can’t think of a reason why it shouldn’t also be yours.  Let it play in another window as we go.

It’s been a cold week.   Oh, there was plenty of bright golden sunshine, but punctuated with gusty winds and low temps and the usual spring blend of rain, snow and sleet to mush it all together into general Grossness.

Anyway, it’s nice to have the crocuses to draw my focus down to the ground, so that it’s easier to see that – while the general landscape of the neighborhood is still dressed in those dull earthen tones of late Winter – there’s a change happening down at our feet.

While I was looking up close at the crocuses, I discovered that there was a forest of newly-sprouted sweet allssyum seedlings beneath the protective canopy of last year’s dead allyssum plants.

I couldn’t be happier that I’ve got this plant growing there so nicely with so little encouragement from me.

It does encourage me, however, and my mind’s already begun to whirl a little with ideas and plans for what to do this year as Spring becomes Summer.

I also have to explore more of the other beds around the house and see what charms the season might be working there.   I’m interested to see if last year’s sunflowers make a comeback on their own for 2011, as the calendula did last year from a 2009 planting.

In another part of the forest, the heliotrope appears likely ready for division after this spring’s blooming.   It seems a surprise that it’s twice the size it used to be, but it’s also another of Life’s mile markers – it or rather, we, have been growing here for just about three years, so the heliotrope’s right on schedule.   I love how it presents all purply-red from the early spring frosts, before turning it’s lovely green as our days warm.

As the song says, just around the corner from the Nest I’d seen a whole bunch of Spring, with this pink heather blooming in the same yard where a great colony of early daffodils have been singing their golden song since St. Patty’s Day.   So this morning, I went off for a walk to see it close-up.

Aside from these early trumpets of gold, crocuses are the dominant bloom on the landscape, although there are surprises to be found here and there.

Several small patches of purple in someone’s lawn turned out to be wild violets, which was a happy surprise, indeed.

I also found a few Glory of the Snow.    I’m tempted to say they’re my favorite, but I realize – as you must, too, by now – that every plant is my favorite.   On this topic, you can be sure I’m not real objective.  But I’m fond of their true blue color and their delicate, short-lived blossoms and the way they create puddles of color in a place where they’ve been allowed to grow for a while.

The bay as seen from Rock Harbor today was greener than it appears in this image, another one of those signs that the season is well underway, even if it often seems not quite so obvious.   The wind off the bay was a little sharp, but also less so than its been recently.

And on shore there’s crocuses.   Lots and lots of crocuses.

“…I know what they told you in the press,

but people, Spring is just around the corner.”

Richard Julian.