Summer in Review

Maybe the best spot from which to view my garden is the upstairs bathroom window, while sitting on the pot. I don’t know if it is the angle and perspective down onto the garden, and the particularly nice view of the corner of the vegetable garden where, outside of the fence, there is a mix of plants that somehow looks just right, or if it is the enforced stillness that makes it the best place to actually see the garden. I don’t know that I ever really look at it, except from that window. I sometimes wonder what my neighbor sees and thinks if she looks up at dusk and sees my head, back lit, peeking behind the bathroom curtain and down into the garden.

It has been a cool and lovely summer, a nice one for being out in and for looking out at. Last winter’s polar vortex blasted many things, including the stink bugs and, I think, some of the Asian tiger mosquitoes. Some of the more wonderful things that were blasted, too, like Noah’s fig tree, have come back. The fig’s regrowth is now about 6 feet high, with some small green figs just shaping up. The limbs are soft and seem tenuously connected to the ground, but hopefully the tree is really and truly back. Noah won’t be climbing it any time soon, but at least his friend is alive and well. The butterfly bushes seem to have enjoyed their bashing by frost, and are blooming beautifully this summer, and the raspberries are large and flavorful. It has been a less friendly year for the annuals, which got a late start and are just now taking off.

Grant and I forgot our wedding anniversary this month, and it occurs to me that our anniversary is also my anniversary with this little plot of land (roughly speaking, anyway, much to my mother-in-law’s horror at the time). Eleven years I have gardened this one fifth of an acre. I still remember the warm summer night we had our rehearsal dinner in the backyard, and how wonderful the cosmos and salvias looked in their crescent shaped bed that arced across the back yard. That bed is gone, and new beds have been made and unmade over the years. I don’t think, though, that one has ever been as beautiful or hopeful as that first sweep of flowers cut through a scruffy lawn. Happy anniversary, garden. And you, too, Grant.

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