© OLD SAGE HANDS

Archive for the ‘In the Garden’ Category

What A Difference A Day Makes: Peony Parade

In In the Garden on June 13, 2013 at 9:47 am

Just another day in the garden…

Earlier this week: The anticipation and promise from this multitude of buds on an ancient peony.

Earlier this week: The anticipation and promise from this multitude of buds on an ancient peony.

Days later: Ahh, the sweet scented air so fragrant as these blooms explode to life!

Days later: Ahh, the sweet scented air so fragrant as these blooms explode to life!

The morning after: Oh no! The evening rains have done their damage. How fleeting the beauty in nature.

The morning after: Oh no! The evening rains have done their damage. How fleeting the beauty in nature.

Never despair!

Never despair!

Fallen flowers are a call for clippers…

Fallen flowers are a call for clippers…

All's well that ends well.

All’s well that ends well.

Urn Fern

In In the Garden on June 11, 2013 at 9:29 am

urn The Boston ferns are loving this warm wet weather. Pairs nicely with chiso (Japanese herb also known as Beefsteak or Perilla) and geraniums.

A Tree Falls in the Urban Forest – A Community Weeps

In In the Garden, Our Earthly Paradise on May 22, 2013 at 7:31 pm

pruningIt’s been a week now; phone wires down and internet service out for half the day, two trucks and an crew of almost a dozen to take this giant on. We’re on edge as the concrete jungle creeps ever nearer the beloved sanctuary and refuge of our urban arboretum. The incessant buzz of chainsaws and wood chippers has my head pounding and eyes growing heavy. There’s clear cutting going on in my neighbour’s backyard and it’s heartbreaking to see an ancient tree being ripped down, limb by limb. Torso thick logs lugged and cavalierly tossed into the chipper. Decades of growth reduced to bark chips a moment later.

chipper

Farewell old linden tree. You’ve served us well. A playground and nursery for numerous litters of raccoons, home to generations of birds, squirrels, countless insects and more recently the rabbit we call Garden Bunny. Goodbye to the deliciously cool shade you provided during the dog days of August, the privacy you’ve afforded many of us neighbours and the endless supply of fresh and fragrant air.

Stripped to the root, the yard now lays bare, naked for all to see the flaws of the landscape open and exposed. Magnified, in fact, as the glorious sun rushes in to fill your void. Picking up the pieces of scattered leaves and fallen branches, we welcome the warm stranger to these once shaded parts, though still in mourning we remember the cool friend who always had our backs.

It’s a Beautiful Day!

In In the Garden on May 2, 2013 at 10:44 am
The garden bursting back to like. Can't wait to get my hands dirty with all the work that awaits!

The garden is bursting back to life. Can’t wait to get my hands dirty with all the work that awaits!

An Earthly Paradise

In Animal Kingdom, In the Garden on April 24, 2013 at 11:20 am
Backyard

The garden bursting back to like. Can’t wait to get my hands dirty with all the work that awaits!

The last couple of days were spent working in our earthly paradise. No, we don’t own a cottage, but enjoy working in our own backyard. Over the years we’ve transformed it from an overgrown selection of weeds to a gorgeous garden that we love to spend time in – and we’re not the only ones.

As soon as I ventured out, it seemed the birds were waiting for me. As I went about preparing the birdbaths and feeders for the first time of the season, I could hear the excitement in the air through the chirping and different songs of those awaiting my efforts. One robin even hopped into the large birdbath to inspect the soapy residue before I had a chance to rinse it out in his impatient anticipation of cool waters.

Once the baths and feeders were all cleaned and filled it was a riot in the wisteria as sparrows and cardinals jockeyed for position. It’s always a joy to watch these incredible creatures. As my husband and I looked upwards to the sunny skies, we saw another familiar figure. Circling above our heads, riding the wind currents or stalking prey, was one of the neighbourhood hawks. That we’ve had the opportunity to see these majestic birds in this busy city close up when they’ve landed on our roof or perched in nearby trees simply amazes me – so equally beautiful and terrifying they are in physique and plumage – a sobering and foreboding reminder on this beautiful afternoon.